Wednesday, June 05, 2013

Making Paper

I took the first of a series of 
paper making classes yesterday.
I've always been intrigued by this process,
and when the class was offered locally,
I jumped on it, 
as did several of my friends.
Above is my friend Karen,
preparing to dip her screens into the pulp bath.
As you can see we had a really nice classroom
in which to work.
The class is offered through
and was held in one of the art 'labs' - 
so lots of great space and equipment.

Claudia Wilburn is our teacher
(you may recall that I took an image transfer class
from her a couple of years ago),
and we learned all sorts of terminology:
"hogging the bath" is when you slowly mix the pulp around
in the bath, making it relatively even,
before you put pulp to screen.

"Kissing Off" is another great phrase -
used when you goof and have to remove your uneven pulp
from your screens, and put it back into your pulp bath.
(I prefer my pulp layer to be rather uneven,
so didn't do a lot of kissing off.)

After you have your layer of pulp on your screen,
you remove your wooden frame,
sandwich your pulp between screen and a piece of interfacing,
flip it over,
and carefully sponge off some of the excess water.
That's what my classmates are doing here:

We each made about 7 pieces of paper,
sandwiching them between sheets of interfacing,
and then Claudia (on right) pressed them in the paper press:

It was amazing to see how much more water was removed!

Then we spread our sheets out on our tables to dry:

Tomorrow we will be pressing dried flowers,
leaves, and whatever between sheets of paper,
as we make them.
So I'm headed out to the garden to gather some petals.
I asked Claudia what would happen if I added 
some Procion MX dyes 
to my pulp, and she honestly did not know.
do any of you???????
So I am going to bring a few little bottles of dye
(and maybe a bit mixed up in print paste?)
to see what will happen.
Since the pulp is cellulose,
I should think it would work well.

Of course,
I fell in love with the process....
and with the paper press!

thanks for dropping by...see you next time!



deanna7trees said...

i've done something similar using my blender many years ago. a fun process and love putting in bits of flowers and leaves from the garden. some thread bits might also work. have never tried it with dyes.

Connie Rose said...

I made some paper back in the day, but sure didn't have that awesome studio and all that space to work in. Did it in the kitchen, was very messy, took forever for the paper to dry without a press. I'm using up that paper, slowly, now. So great that you have those resources so close by...because papermaking, like everything else we do, is addicting! xo

Jeannie said...

Fun! What a fantastic place to work and that press is beautiful. Looking forward to seeing the results. :)

Elizabeth said...

Looks like you are getting in lots of great play time!! Love this paper class and can't wait to see the results!! I just did a long post with lots of pics- my first in about 2 months- Isn't that terrible.!!!! Now I have to beg my good blogging pals to swing on by! ( Yes, that IS a beg!!)


Jane LaFazio said...

oh what fun! I wish I was there, taking the class with you!

Carol said...

Oh, it looks like a great workshop! What fun you are all having. I've made paper but a lifetime ago so don't remember much about it. I don't think I ever produced anything worth using.