Sunday, April 18, 2010

We begin! WIP ~ Fiber Sculpture ~ Day One!

This is how my day started out.  Foggy and no sun!!  What a day to be working outside...chance of rain!!  Sigh!  But I have to get the paper started so it will be ready to use.  I ordered paper pulp from Twinrocker and they sent me some fabulous pulp.  Clean and white....tooth whitened white!!!

Isn't it beautiful.  They also sell sheets of already made paper in many different textures and styles.  It is just a blast to visit their stuff!  Anywho...there is the pulp.  Now to make the form.

I laid down a sheet of 3/4 plywood, exterior grade, so that it would hold the weight of the pulp.  Then I used two by fours to make the form.  The clamps secure the form to the plywood so it won't shift during the drying process.
I usually make paper indoors but these sheets are 4 feet by 8 feet and I just don't have the room inside for that.  Not to mention the water that will be dripping out...what a mess that would be.  When I ordered the paper, I had them put in extra stabilizer so this large sheet would hold together.  We will see!!

As you can see, I laid twigs and branches into the form.  I also covered the plywood with black plastic.  There is one draw back to using plastic on the bottom of the pulp.  It will make the paper somewhat shiny on one side.   But that will be the side I glue down to the piece, so I am not overly concerned.  I also keep the plastic bunched up to give more texture.

Now to add the pulp.  I colored one batch with Burnt Sienna and a touch of Red.  Then I layered the different colors onto the form.   Burnt Sienna and white!

I just used my hands and a scrap two by four to settle the pulp down into the form.  The form is two inches higher on one side to facilitate drainage.  The rain keeps threatening, so we have a tarp standing by.  I am not sure how long this will take to dry.  Since I live in an arid shouldn't take too long. 

These are some close ups so you can see the branches being held by the pulp.  You can also see the colors and how they flow one into another.  When this won't be as bright.  Right now it glistens because of the water.

As predicted, the rains did come.  So we covered it securely with the blue tarp and now I have to wait.  I will keep you posted.  Tomorrow I make the undulating tubes that will give the piece it's movement and depth.
I will take pics along the way.

I have two canvases.  Both are four feet wide by eight feet wide.  They will sit, one on top of the other.  So to speak.  There will be a space between them.  Just wanted to remind you of how big this piece will be.  I have my studio reorganized so that I will be able to work on each canvas, one at a time.  Ought to be interesting.

Thanks for stopping by and viewing this work in progress!

Have a magical and blessed day!
Hugging you


Brian Miller said...

how cool...thanks for involving us in the process...really intriguing...

przhym said...

Come on sun and dry air!!! Let's dry that paper!!! Oh, and I hope the wind stays down too!!

She Writes said...

Looking very cool!

bonniebluedenim said...

wow, amazing, keep us posted!

The Lucy and Dick Show said...

Beautiful paper! My sister dabbled in making her own paper for awhile, but never the huge sheets that you've made. Hats off to you!


wow !!! amazing work !

ellen abbott said...

I'm very interested in this. thanks so much for showing us how and what you are doing.

Cinner said...

SueAnn, I think this is just amazing, I have never seen this before. So cool how you put the branches in. I will be watching....I hope you don't mind but I used the same blog template as yours, not on purpose,,,but I love it! Let me know if you want me to change it. I hope the rain did not damage your WIP. Have a great day.

Land of shimp said...

I think the most fascinating thing about people is how much we have figured out. Someone essentially invented this process, isn't that amazing?

I always end up thinking the same thing about intricate recipes. At some point, some person stripped the bark off a tree and discovered a spice. We have natures that cause us to always quest for more.

I think that's really what art is, taking one thing, creating something else with it. An endless quest about possibilities.

Thanks for sharing this, it is very interesting. We people, on our long quest to alter our surroundings, make them more useful, or food more flavorful, or pulp more beautiful :-)

Sarah Knight said...

I so miss making paper! I had an awesome time doing it as a teen. I think my mother hated what I did to her blender... but, ah.

That looks wonderful, I hope your project turns out fantastically!
: )

Alix said...


I had no idea the process was so involved, and yet... the paper is such a unique thing it should have to be involved to be that beautiful.

Thanks so much for showing and teaching us SueAnn! I am just glued to your art work. It's amazing!

Jane said...

Wow...this is so cool to see how you do your work! I can't wait to see it finished!

I love the Cranberries!


Mimi said...

I've always wanted to make paper! I can't wait to see what happens next.

SandyCarlson said...

That is the neatest darn thing. I love your work.

Denise said...

love that you are sharing this whole process with us. it is fascinating to watch how you create such beauty!

imbeingheldhostage said...

Fascinating SueAnn! Thank you so much for blogging about this-- how else would I be able to have such an experience?

The Artful Paper Doll said...

This project looks like fun! I have ordered pulp from Twinrocker myself but it has been ages.

Anything paper just makes me crazy cause now all I wanna do is play.

Have fun and I'll look for more on this. :)


Kim Mailhot said...

What patience and dedication to work with such a detailed process ! Wow ! Cool to know how it is done.
Hugs, SueAnn !

Hilary said...

Wow you certainly start from scratch. What in interesting process. I'm so looking forward to seeing more.