Tuesday: (4 hours) Sketched some organic forms like leaves and vines, dedicated time to ordering more supplies after finding a good recipe – Calcium Carbonate and Cotton Fibers. Drew a lot of leaves on a large piece of paper, cut them out, soaked them, and folded them into shapes using a wet folding technique. Also watched the movie, Between the Lines (A paper engineer documentary) while folding these forms.
Wednesday: (1 hour) Picked up wood, staples, and other supplies around my house to bring to my studio. Composed a plan of how to work on Thursday and make my time much more efficient.
Thursday: (8 hours) After sketching and looking up animal anatomy -- built a wire armature and blocked it with pink foam for a Jackson’s Chameleon and a Buffalo relief sculpture to make molds out of in order to test the paper pulp recipe (Once the materials arrive). Made a few more leaves using the wet folding technique and created flowers and other organic forms.
Once I gathered the materials, I got right to work. Tuesday I didn’t waste time nor on Thursday at all and because of that I managed to accomplish 2 sculptures simultaneously and started folding paper. I’m happy to see physical pieces of work developing in my studio.
What I accomplished/discovered/encountered:
Through folding basic leaf and petal forms, I have found myself caught in a whirlwind of creative problem solving. I’ve made leaves following the same pattern over and over just so I learn how I made that certain leaf. Although once I move on to another method I find myself forgetting my previous technique if I try it again. After repeating this frustrating process I have learned to make three models of the same leaf: One of the completed leaf, one with fold creases, and one flat leaf with lines drawn on it. I hang up the successful leaves on my wall and keep the rejected leaves in a small pile to go back to later. It seems like such a simplified process that nothing spectacular is produced from it, but I feel that through this “drafting” stage I have more drive and a much better thought process than just researching. My research is used to supplement, but I’m at a stage now where I really should be making rather than just thinking.
On Thursday I dedicated myself to the studio almost all day away from the computer and books to producing more physical pieces of work. I started building my armature (Later to be put into a mold) and my relief sculpture to be placed in a mold this weekend. Once the materials arrive at my house I will be making a 3rd batch of paper pulp to see if this one is more successful than the previous recipes. I finished the relief sculpture, but the armature still needs more clay blocking and detailing to the figure. On the side I continued my paper leaf folding by hand, but I see an issue arising: should keep this technique of hand folding flora with thicker paper or make molds of individual leaves and use paper pulp? I see a lack of consistency between how I make flora and fauna – so I have to consider using the same paper for the paper pulp and the wet folding technique, but how drastic will the cotton fibers change the material? Ultimately I was planning on using recycled paper for the paper pulp, but most recycled paper is poor quality for wet folding. I would need something thicker like watercolor paper, but that could get expensive. I could try making my own sheets of paper FRM recycled paper which would guarantee nice thick paper, but that would involve an additional amount of work to my process. With the limited amount of time I have, I need to try making my own paper this Saturday at Hollinder’s to see if making my own paper is a possible variable to my IP progress. Once I get a good feel for making my own paper I can decide how things will fare.
What I think I should do next:
On Saturday I will be taking a papermaking class at Hollinder’s for a couple of hours and see if making my own paper would be a possibility in my project. I need to be realistic of the time I have this year – so I will be making a huge decision based off how this Saturday class goes. I will also start making a mold of relief sculptures while I wait for the cotton and calcium to arrive. I’m hoping to have some nice sculptures casted and wet fold sculptures done by Monday afternoon. Worst case, I have an alternate recipe to use from last time. Wish me luck this weekend!