I am having some prints done of some photographs for an art exhibition, the photos are mounted and framed, and the photo is printed so there is a small visible white border around the print before the mount of 7mm at left, right and top and 14mm at the bottom.

The intention is to number and sign the print at the bottom as is typically done with limited edition prints of paintings (and I believe photographs). But because they are printed on satin paper (Canson Baryta) a normal pencil will not work, and the pens I have tried are too black.

Is there a type of pencil or a pen which gives the apperance of being pencil that will work on this type of paper.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Have you considered signing the edge of the matte instead? \$\endgroup\$
    – Michael C
    May 10, 2016 at 10:16
  • \$\begingroup\$ Yes but I really dont think its looks very good to sign the mount \$\endgroup\$ May 10, 2016 at 10:22
  • \$\begingroup\$ Maybe ask Mike Johnston? :) See: theonlinephotographer.typepad.com/the_online_photographer/2014/…, although hilariously, Red River recommends the Sakura Pigma that Micron Johnston didn't like. \$\endgroup\$
    – inkista
    May 11, 2016 at 0:36
  • \$\begingroup\$ What do you mean "too black"? You want it to give the impression it is a pencil line (as in graphite pencil)? So a grey line is the result you are expecting? Would you prefer alcohol-based, gel or pigment based (shinier when dry), paint-based? \$\endgroup\$ May 11, 2016 at 2:13
  • \$\begingroup\$ Good links, yes I would like to give the impression of pencil or at least not have it to black so it doesnt distract from the image. I went into my local stationary and tried a whole host of pens and the best one I found was a Pilot G-TEC-C4 Black, this was nioce and fine, went on okay and disnt smudge but it was still too black. Apparently in their equivalent Japanese only range of Hi-Tec-C Gel Ink Pen they have Usuzumi (Light Sumi Gray) but when I ordered it on Amazon was cancelled as they had none in stock, not sure if it still made in this colour. \$\endgroup\$ May 11, 2016 at 10:28

1 Answer 1


I routinely print on Canson Baryta paper. I leave a white border around the image and sign with a Pigma Micron archival ink pen. It is black, but the do have other colors.


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