Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Marbleized Paper

I love marbleized paper but never really had much luck when I tried to make it in the past. I recently stumbled across the directions in a book for children's crafts so I thought I'd give it another try. The directions said to thin oil paint down with paint thinner and drip a few drops of a couple colors in the water, drag a toothpick though it to make designs and carefully lay the paper down to pick up the paint. Sounded easy so I played with it a bit in my studio. At first I had the paint too thin the directions said the consistency of cream so eventually I got it right. I wore gloves to lift the paper up after it touched the paint floating on the water. The results were beautiful. I let them dry and then brought them home but noticed they smelled strongly of oil paint and thinner even though I used Turpenoid instead of regular paint thinner.


Then my assistant Jeanne gave me a kit with supplies that were non toxic and water based. That prompted me to do an internet search and I learned about a method that uses liquid starch and watered down acrylic paint. Beautiful! I couldn't wait to try it. It worked really well once I got the paint to the right consistency. Now the kids could pull the paper up by themselves without having to worry if they got it on their hands and it smelled great, like fresh laundry.

Here's Shannon showing us the beautiful results. The kids loved it. I read that you should wash the starch off so we passed the prints though a tray of water after letting them dry a bit. I also just read that a 1/2 teaspoon alum mixed into 2 cups of starch helps the paint to adhere to the paper. I'll try that next time.



Sidney's using some tools from the kit to make patterns in the paint.

I started with a color story for each tray like red, yellow, orange in one tray and blue, green and purple in another tray.



This is April experimenting with all the colors.
I was worried that the starch would become too saturated with paint to be used but some of the paint sunk to the bottom and I freshened up the top with a bit more starch as needed. We were able to keep the same trays going for 3 hours.


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