Saturday, August 08, 2020

What to do - I love glue

5 x 7 postcard. Blind contour, drawing, collage. Judith Hoffman

Well, it's more like "I love PVA." I have been trying to make collages on postcard size pieces of paper. The paper tends to curl. I'm using both 90 pound papers and 300 pound papers as substrates, both coated on two sides with Matte medium. Next I collage on some background papers for texture and interest, using PVA. These are not coated before collaging. My blind contour drawings go on top of the "texture" papers. They are on tracing paper because it's pretty transparent. The tracing paper shrinks a lot when glued down, so I coat it with matte medium on both sides, allow to dry, then glue it down with more matte medium. Neither substrate stays flat. Although I think things are improved by coating both sides of the papers. My process is intuitive, and I try to be fairly fast. I don't really want to plan every step, coat all the papers and then wait for them to dry before doing the collage.

5 x 7 postcard. Blind Contour drawing, collage. Judith Hoffman

There is a method, invented by Jonathan Talbot, where you coat all your papers with gloss medium and them iron them together. I have tried it, and it works perfectly. It even works with matte medium. It's almost too perfect. You have to have a plan, coat all papers, then iron everything in place. I am resisting that at the moment. I hate ironing and planning and really like the glue process. 

Transfer test, using Talbot transfer paper

I am also experimenting with transfers, thinking I could use that method instead of the drawings on tracing papers. Above is the first test - I drew on the Talbot transfer paper, ironed it to an old book page and after wetting the page, I rubbed off the transfer paper. I think this would work okay with a stronger substrate. But again it's not a fun process. If the whole collage was sealed with matte medium, I think this would work okay. The rubbing is tedious, although the Talbot paper comes off pretty easily. I wonder why I think this is supposed to be fun? I do also like the warm yellowish tones of the tracing paper. They show a little in both the postcards above.

Work table testing zone
And finally a shot of my work table. It's just a big sheet of 4 by 8 plywood on shelves so I cover it with this old yellow paper I got very cheap years ago. It's the perfect surface to test whatever I am about to draw with.


eileen2000 said...

Yeah, I got the talbot book awhile back but this method doesn't fit with my style of working either. I love the look of these.

Judith Hoffman said...

I can't imagine you using the Talbot method. You are so intuitive. I'm so glad you like these, I feel happy with the. content, just need to work on the presentation.

Dawn Gray said...

Do your drawings smudge at all when you add the matte medium over the tracing paper? Could you coat the tracing paper before drawing on it? I love the things you use for collage elements. I am going to have to go hunting for that kind of thing; my husbands study might be the most likely spot... We have purged so much lately that I'm not sure there is much left.

Judith Hoffman said...

Hi Dawn! The drawings are done in waterproof ink, so once they are dry they don’t smudge. The main purpose for the matte medium as the last layer is to hold non-archival papers in place. I think I could coat the tracing paper before drawing on it, assuming I used matte medium. But the ink soaks so nicely into the tracing paper. (This is a soft yellow paper that comes in a roll. It’s has a 7 lb weight.) Finding collage elements is a pastime in itself.