Thursday, March 26, 2015

Drawing on the Hair Side of Parchment

This is the hair side of parchment.  The surface is beautiful, intricately patterned;  but it's hard to draw on with my black waterproof pen.  This side feels slick and greasy in places, almost plasticky.  I did a little research and found out that calcium compounds such as calcium carbonate can be used to remove the grease.  To make it smooth, thin pastes of lime, flour, egg whites and milk can be rubbed onto the surface.  I have some calcium carbonate and will try rubbing some onto the next hair side page and see what difference that makes.  I don't want to obscure the pattern, so will skip the thin paste.

I like the look of the hair side, and with careful attention to pen strokes it's possible to draw on the unprepared surface.  It takes a long time, though, and I only had time to make two drawings tonight-- a sea horse skeleton from a Chinese medicine shop and a bone that I found on the beach at Lake Michigan one summer, possibly a seagull bone.

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