Thursday, January 30, 2014

I....have made...PAPER!!!!

I feel like Tom Hanks in the movie Cast Away after he builds his first fire.

I took a Hand Made Paper class this past weekend with Karen O'Neal at Lansing Art Gallery. It was an amazing class and a much needed confidence builder. I showed Karen the paper I had made out of phragmites (pictured in my last post) and she suggested maybe I hadn't cooked the stalks long enough before blending. She actually liked the paper, but we both agreed that it might be too rough to transfer an image onto the way I was envisioning. Anyway, I'm going to throw it back into the pot and give it another go in the coming weeks.

I had called Karen prior to the class to tell her of my paper woes, so she went ahead and brought me some of her own phragmites mixture to play with during the class. She's awesome! It gave me the perfect opportunity to both see what the pulp should look like and to give it a test run under ideal circumstances. Whenever I ran into a problem, she was there to answer my questions and give guidance. It was simply wonderful! I made eight pieces of paper with which I can begin to experiment the photo transfers onto.

THANK YOU KAREN FOR ALL YOUR HELP, INSIGHT, AND ENCOURAGEMENT! If anyone wants to learn how to make paper, Karen teaches both private and group classes at her studio, Out of Hand Papermaking Studio, in Ann Arbor. She's a great teacher, passionate about the process and about sharing it with others!