Paper marbling with pigmented fountain pen ink

Happy accidents with ink marbling

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My barrier to trying out paper marbling has always been the materials/set-up required. I don't have a studio with a dedicated craft space to get messy. My rental is carpeted. My work desk is where my papers and computer live. I can't afford to get nail polish or oil-based inks all over the place!

I saw this tutorial for suminagashi (Japanese marbling) from Rokolee. It looked like it could be simple to do at a smaller scale and I wondered if it would work with fountain pen ink, specifically pigmented ones. I sacrificed a small amount of Platinum Carbon Black ink in a vial and used that as a tester. It does work!! Like the video, I used very few items:

  • Platinum carbon black (pigmented) fountain pen ink, in a vial
  • 2 brushes
  • Cup of water with 1 drop of dishsoap
  • 1 styrofoam tray I had from grocery shopping
  • A bunch of extra letter-sized HWA covers cut down to quarters (100lb coverstock)
  • Some place to dry the papers; honestly I just laid them on top of the boxes piling up in my apartment haha (some of them were laying on papers inside my recycling bin)

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Because of the weight of the cover stock, the dried papers weren't super curly, at least not in a ripply way. I did end up ironing them a little bit to flatten them down, but they were completely usable even without.

I don't have other pigmented inks to try this with, but I imagine that it would work with other colours. So much fun potential! Marble pattern feels timeless, elegant, and an interesting way to decorate otherwise plain things. I also have an itch to DIY my own paper so I can reused all these...papers (overprints, cut-offs, etc.) I have...but same thing re: no studio space, haha.

Today's music post: Wadada Lasts by Mama Odé, from their Tales and Patterns of the Maroons album. The album is described as "At its core this is a classic “hip hop” format LP - but have you ever heard Creole Sega Rap Roots music before?"

I'm trying to link to music in way that directly leads to a way to hear and support/pay for artists' music at the same time. Bandcamp has been doing Bandcamp Friday on the first Friday of every month until the end of the year. It's where Bandcamp waives revenue sharing that day and more $ by fans go directly to the artists. Bandcamp fridays coming up are:

  • November 6 2020
  • December 4 2020

I've been hearing abysmal things about little musical artists make very little revenue from streaming sites like Spotify, for example, "£12.34 (about $15.67) for five to six million streams" as cited in the article. I haven't done extensive research into what platforms get the artist the best cut.

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