Thursday, February 21, 2013

Papers, the dreaded final chapter

More papers for your delight below.

Other books about paper that are worth building extra shelves for...not that it's something I would ever do!

Jules Heller Papermaking: How to Make Handmade Paper for Printmaking, Drawing, Painting, Relief and Cast Forms, Book Arts, and Mixed Media

Bo Rudin Making Paper: A Look into the History of an Ancient Craft

Herbert Holik Handbook of Paper and Board

Leonard M Rosenband Papermaking in Eighteenth-Century France: Management, Labor, and Revolution at the Montgolfier Mill, 1761-1805


Papers:

Magnani Incisioni

Snow white, thick and absorbent, this is very much like Arches 88 except somehow it behaves better. It is especially suited for wood engravings or for embossing (surprise, since those two print-acts require such different characteristics).
For a white paper, this is definitely the king. It is very smooth and accepts buckets of ink, layer after layer. It is  a strong paper that tears smoothly.

Magnani Pescia Blue/Cream/White

This paper is thick and soft and of an unusual light blue color. Pescia also comes in a beautiful cream and pure white. The surface is very smooth with no grain. Tears or cuts remarkably well. Basically "acts" like Arches 88 but better quality all around.
It works well wet or dry, shrinks evenly (so it registers well), and takes much abuse so it is equally suitable for hand or press printing.  It embosses well because of the thickness and will take many layers of ink. It also accepts engravings and other printmaking methods, truly a king of papers.
Pine Creek Escapade is printed on Pescia.

 

Masa





This is a great practice paper but also very very very! suitable for wood engravings. It is a Japanese paper, so it is thin and strong. comes heavily sized on one side, smooth like typing paper--no, smoother. The other side clearly shows the typical long fibers of Japanese papers (a great and affordable teaching tool).
Other than that, it is snow white, thin and affordable. I buy it by the roll and keep it for proofing but also for engravings to get all that wonderful detail.

Mexican Bark

 
This hand-made paper is expensive and difficult to work with. Another one of those challenges! Unsized, tough, thick; made by beating bark "to a pulp" then forming sheets. It feels like thin layers of bark and absolutely will not accept ink unless dampened thoroughly. This doesn't mean it has to be soaked, just let the dampness travel well overnight. Printing requires a gel additive or the paper will stay on the block.
It comes in ivory, chestnut, buckskin, and marble (a mixture of chestnut/buckskin and ivory). It is specially suited for simple images and will emboss nicely. 
It will also tear nicely, not always where you want. It is impossible to cut or tear in straight lines, but wetting with a paint brush causes the paper to separate beautifully.
A nice challenge for specially planned images.

Mulberry Natural




This is a thin, unsized, decorative paper that is tough to use in prints. The best use I can think of is for one-color prints, since the speckled greenish background of the paper adds plenty to the image.
It behaves much like Japanese papers, that is, it loves ink and is strong, although not as strong and malleable as okawara or hosho. If you have a  specific image in mind like the Joshua Forest pictured, then it is a great paper and no other will do. I keep using it to print desert images.

Murillo Printmaking

This is a thick, cardboard-feeling, chunky and tough paper. It absorbs the ink well, but has to be soaked to print because in its dry state it is HARD!
It comes in the pictured Chestnut and many other bright and buff colors. The cream Murillo is especially attractive. It has a distinct wavy pattern which will show in the finished print. After soaking and drying it is likely that it will buckle much like watercolor paper, so it has to be dried under weights between blotters.
Murillo Chestnut was used for Hija Del Sol.

 

Niggeden

A meaty, German mould-made paper with very distinct waves running through the fibers. It is hard to the touch and medium weight, has to be dampened for printing. The waves will show through the finished print, so if you don't like that, don't use it.
It absorbs the ink readily, although dry printing does not yield good results. The warmth of the tan paper is difficult to find in others, except Arches tan and Kitakata. Renaissance was printed on Niggeden.

 

Okawara




This is a thin, lightly sized on one side, beautiful paper that is a dream to print on. It works equally well dry or dampened, it is lightweight, warm in color. It prints equally well on the sized side and the unsized side, giving beautiful results either way (oil inks). Tears well, feels soft and strong. 
If you are planning a big run, get all your paper in one order because the rolls (36"x72") can vary quite a bit in color. Also, there are different qualities, some hand-made and some machine made which are cheaper but lack the "gorgeousness."

 

Rives de Lin





This very expensive paper is so full of personality that I can't help using it, even though it's really meant for drawing. When I try to explain to someone how beautiful paper can be, I merely show them  a sheet of this stuff.
Rives de Lin is snow white and toothy, but don't let that stop you as it absorbs ink as well as any of the Magnani papers. The images are softer because the 'shallows' of the paper will remain white. It is a heavy Western type paper that I love using for soft effects.
It will accept layer upon layer of ink and the final effect can look like a watercolor. Tears beautifully and in fact the tears are closer to a real deckle than when tearing any other paper.
It is, however, expensive but well worth it and comes in rolls for the adventurous.

Rising Stonehenge



A very affordable all printmaking purposes paper. Advantages are numerous: comes in a variety of soft colors and black, it is a Western heavy paper ideally suited for both woodcuts and wood engravings, embosses well, prints great wet or dry.
It is lightly sized internally, so it is a bit harder (non-spongy) than the Magnani papers. It tears great and with a nice imitation deckle edge. Comes in all sizes. Behaves in every occasion and comes in a wide range of creams, tans and off whites. I know we printmakers are supposed to use more expensive papers, but this is a definite winner with me and I can't see a downside.
Also comes in rolls.