Our adult beginner papermaking and moulding workshop (details here) was a huge success this week. The studio was buzzing, the participants were enthused and the Primrose Paper Arts volunteers were there in numbers helping everyone to achieve great results.
And, boy, did everyone work hard!! Of the 11 people attending only 2 had a little papermaking experience. This workshop started with forming the sheets, lovely crisp white paper, moved into some inclusions in the paper and then to moulding and shaping. A lot to take in for one day, but with outstanding results.
The day was led by the very knowledgeable and experienced Jill Elias, not only guiding people through the process but also explaining how to prepare pulp, the properties of paper (commercial, plant fibre, cotton based, etc.) and how and why fine pulp forms into new paper.
Once everyone had mastered how to use the mold and deckle, extract the pulp from the vat and layer the new sheets between the couching cloths the stacked ‘sandwiches’ were placed under pressure in the press.
They were then transferred to drying boards, which ensures a good flat finish.
Included in this workshop was a 30 minute talk from Ruth Faerber, a founding member of Primrose Paper Arts and a leader in this field.
Ruth has been both a pioneer and influential innovator in the world of Australian paper arts. At the forefront of molding and casting paper she has produced art pieces that are held in numerous galleries and collections. Ruth, now 94, is still sprightly and ever dedicated to the art of forming, manipulating, colouring and otherwise working with paper in all its forms.
She spoke about her own creative evolution, experimentation and also generously gave much advice to our new papermakers.
Her talk was lively, entertaining and engaging. She also asked questions of Jill regarding the workshop content so she could pass on relevant tips, hear about what had been achieved and what the afternoon program was to be. At 94 she is as keen as ever to be involved, to hear about new experiences and keep up to date with what is happening in the group. After all, without her the group would never have existed.
The afternoon saw the group move into molding wet paper sheets.
Jill demonstrated on a textural tile and explained the many options available for creating texture, shaping and dimension.
Here is some of the work, both in progress and finished pieces:
A terrific workshop, excellent progress and outstanding results. Looks like Primrose Paper Arts will be getting some new members – and we are ready to welcome them.