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Art Papers From The Kitchen

September 22, 2011

I was inspired a few weeks ago by Sassa Lynne over at Chittle Chattle when she wrote her tutorial titled Paper Fabric. I love her idea and want to pursue it further. But somehow things go through twists and turns between the spark of an idea that eventually becomes a taking off point for something almost entirely different. I want to thank  Sassa for putting this fun thought into my head. I do want to carry this process through to the eventual paper fabric she describes in her tutorial.

But here’s what I’ve done today. I love the challenge of recycling, and hate to throw anything away that could possibly be used for my art, especially for collage. When we buy cheese slices at the deli, the slices are protected in between with deli paper. I kept peeling off the cheese and throwing away the paper until one day I decided to see what I could do with the paper for collage. After all, it’s nice and strong and I like that it’s translucent. I took a stack of the sheets, washed them gently in very soapy warm water, rinsed them, squeezed the water out, carefully straightened them and hung them up to dry. They are such nice papers, and more fun than if I had bought a box of commercial deli paper.

Deli paper, each sheet is 8-1/2 x 11 inches

I suspected that enough of the oils would remain in the paper to act somewhat as a resist, and that is what happened. I laid the papers out, wet them with water on a brush (because I couldn’t find my spray bottle!) and dripped different colors of diluted fabric paints and acrylics around on the surface. I would drip color on the first sheet, lay the next one down on top of it, and continue stacking paint and papers. In some cases they had to be blotted on another sheet such as newsprint when I got a little carried away with the color. Then once they were covered I peeled them apart and dried them.

Papers drying

Ready for a second coat of paint

When these dried, I added more layers of paint, then dried them all with a heat gun.
I like the way the wrinkles and residual oils in the papers created texture. Here are just four examples.

These papers are going to be a great addition to my stack!

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20 Comments leave one →
  1. September 22, 2011 10:41 pm

    Martha,
    This process with found papers is intriguing. I buy sheets of deli paper by the 1000. You can also use it to do image transfers in your laser printer. They transfer beautifully into encaustic by just burnishing and removing. The toner embeds in the wax. I’ll have to do a post about the process.

    I like the effects you were able to create and I want to check out the link you noted. I’m finally getting back to blogging after very spotty summer participation. You’re always up to such interesting things!

    • September 22, 2011 11:40 pm

      Oooohhh, Margaret, that sounds fantastic. That would be fun to try. Yes, I’m thinking of getting some deli paper. I love it. I need to catch up with your blog. I always enjoy your beautiful work.

  2. September 23, 2011 12:18 am

    Martha, these papers are so cool, and thank you for the step-by-step, I’d love to try it. Now I’m off to check the link.

  3. September 23, 2011 2:09 am

    Martha, thanks so much for the mention again. Yes, DELI PAPERS! I think you’ll be buying them by the 1000 too, LOL

  4. Sandra permalink
    September 23, 2011 2:13 am

    Lovely colours. I do follow your posts even if not replying so much, really happy that you have found a new source of inspiration. Keep the deli papers coming!

    • September 23, 2011 12:35 pm

      Trust me, Sandra – I know how time consuming it is to try to comment on all our favorite blogs. I can’t keep up half the time either, and get the guilts over it from time to time. But I do know you’ll be here when you can. Glad you like the papers!

  5. Anonymous permalink
    September 23, 2011 9:35 am

    they are just fantastic and i plan to try it very soon just finished a whole lot of collage and am back to the sculpture…m

  6. Terry permalink
    September 23, 2011 11:28 am

    Hi Martha. These papers are very interesting. I like that they are “after market” as well. Plus it gives me the perfect excuse to visit the deli more often. Thanks for sharing. Terry

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