(Space) Paste Paper

Not only did I have the opportunity to view a number of artist’s books at the Lilly and Fine Arts Library while I was visiting Bloomington, Indiana, I also made paste papers with Mary of Spring Leaf Press. I can’t wait to make more.

Directions as follows:

Mixture should be a 1(wheat starch):4 (H2O) ratio

In a double boiler, pour a small amount of water into pan and allow to heat up

Pour wheat starch into the measured amount of water and mix until the clumps are gone

Gently pour starch mixture into pan, stir constantly

After 1-2 minutes, the mixture becomes milky and begins to thicken to a pudding-like consistency

Keep stirring for a few more minutes. The mixture becomes glassy and bubbles begin to form

In order to test consistency, place some of the mixture on the back of a spoon and smoosh it against the wall of the pan- it should be stringy

Remove the paste mixture from heat and allow to cool

Wet a mounted screen and pour the now congealed paste mixture onto it

Work paste through the screen. This is the tedious part. The more you work the paste through the screen, the finer the consistency becomes

Massage paste with a paintbrush and add water until it reaches the desired consistency (make sure water is absorbed into paste before adding more water)

Add desired colors to paste mixture

For paper: secure a piece of mylar and place paper on it (for easy clean up). Dampen paper with a sponge, or spray bottle and begin

For cotton cloth: dampen both sides of cloth. Coat one side with unadulterated paste, flip to the other side and begin. If you use clear paste as the first color, painting other colors over it will result in a ghost image

Some samples: