Monday, July 21, 2008

Palo Alto Library Paper Making Workshop Day 1

Last Monday I conducted the first day of a two day workshop at Mitchell Park Library in Palo Alto. In this class for teens and pre-teens, students learned how to press recycled paper from food wrappers and other paper scraps. They learned how to use this paper to cover wire insects they created in the second workshop day.

Above, pulling a screen with paper pulp. I make my paper making screens from plastic window screen netting and small picture frames. Just cut screen to overlap edges and use heavy duty stapler to attach it to picture frame.

Above, adding inclusions of Japanese and Chinese food wrappers and manga to the paper vats.

Pulling a screen through the green vat. We added the coagulant to the pulp first.

Pulling a screen.

We had four colors to choose from: blue, green, red and yellow.

I use wooden boards for the paper pressing. You can also press onto squares of felt and place onto a drying rack. With drying boards like these you need to remind the kids to work from top to bottom in transferring paper to boards.

Luckily, it was a nice warm day so I knew the paper would dry pretty quickly overnight. If it had been a morning workshop, the paper would have been dried by late afternoon. I tape up my boards with painters tape to mark off sections for the kids to press their screens into.

Pressing the screen against the board, the students transfer the pulp by pressing a sponge against the backside of the screen. This presses out the water and makes the pulp stick to the board.

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