Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Tips and Tricks for Artists on Paper Conservation

Are you an artist working with paper? Ever wonder about how to fix a creased corner? Does it matter if you use archival mat board for framing or not? Do you know the difference between rag board, acid free board and lignin free board?

Here are the answers to all those questions and more. Our guest speaker for last weeks class is a paper conservator at the Texas A&M University. She had so much important and interesting information I knew that I needed to get a video of it as much as I could, instead of write a long and boring article about it that no one would read. She also had a handout of the basics, that you can download here.

Here are some closeups of the things she has laid on the table and talks about in the video:

Jeanne also came to visit me the week before, when she showed me hands on how to hide the creases on a corner that had been fairly badly damaged during shipping.

She started by using a water brush pen, like she has in the above talk. Carefully moistening the paper on the crease. Very localized only on the crease and right beside it, and slow enough that there was no puddles of water on the paper (i.e. no shiny spots). When it was wet and the paper fibers relaxed, we got to work with the teflon folder easing the fibers back into place. 

Here is what the big creased corner looked like with raking light after we worked on it.  It is so much nicer looking than before. Now when you shine direct light on it, it doesn't instantly glare back at you. Below is another corner from the same print before I worked on it. You see me working on it on the video in the second half. 

Thanks Jeanne, I learned so many new things in the last few weeks. Hope it was helpful to you too. If you have questions, you can ask here and I can relay answers back from her.