Experiments with carbon paper
Drawing Lab Challenge #11 – how did you do?
I managed to slip off the rails somewhat and do something not quite what the challenge was asking for. I didn’t really feel like drawing something, I felt like playing with textures, so I did. I grabbed some carbon paper (of which I have a pile of since my office working sister was kind enough to give me a stack years ago and it has been sitting in the bottom of my art cupboard since) and did some experimenting.
I was interested in what kinds of marks I could make on the paper using the carbon and a variety of implements. I used the ends of pens, the edge of my plastic sharpener, a playdough tool I borrowed from my daughter, but the most interesting effect I managed came from using a meat tenderiser and a citrus zester (yes, I raided my kitchen drawers :D).
A meat tenderiser, if you haven’t seen one, is a small metal mallet with shallow spikes on the hammer face. Mine has little pyramids that come to dull points. This is what happens when I drag those points around in small circles on the carbon paper.
And this texture was created using the citrus zester, a small tool with five tiny cutting circles on one end. Those five little circles create four points of contact with the carbon paper, all nicely in a row. The above was created by dragging those four little points across the carbon in a shallow zig-zag.
And then I played with home made circle stencils to see how I could control some of these effects.
But the biggest experiment of all this was using the meat tenderiser again with that first texture/pattern.
I did this the same way I have been doing most of my other experiments – created the background and then looked for the art, drawing from what I could make out of the elements.
This was fun, though I think I’ve hardly scratched the surface with the possibilities. One thing I wish is that I could do something similar in multicolour. I did a quick attempt with my watercolour pencils to create a rub down effect, but the transfer rate was very poor compared to the carbon. I might investigate different coloured carbon sheets (though they are likely to be in boring office colours if I can get any) or dig through my art cupboard and try different media….hmm, come to think of it, pastels might do the job 😀 Another experiment awaiting my play.
Anyway, this is not what the challenge called for, but it did sprout art which all I really care about. How about you? How did you go with the challenge?
(who introduced her nearly three year old daughter to carbon paper too)