Tuesday, October 1, 2019

Eco-Printing at the OPC

Six women joined me for an Introduction to Eco-Printing in the beautiful little cottage next to the OPC Senior Center garden in Rochester. A good definition of this process is on a guest blog post at the link below:

It was an ideal location and a beautiful day for setting up the steamers/roaster outside while we worked inside. We did have one snafu when the circuits went out, but as soon as they were fixed we were off and running with packets of papers, flowers, stems and leaves in the pots.
We gathered some materials from the nearby garden but mostly used the colorful box of materials donated by Utica Florist. What a treat to have those beautiful colors sitting in the middle of the table. 'Each sheet of paper was quickly doused in a vinegar/water solution.....many of the plants had had a bath in alum (pickling spice) and water the night before.....then plants or plant parts were arranged on the paper so that each side of the paper would be touch the plants. We folded our papers in half before laying the plants out. 

When we got everything arranged, I wrapped them in a cloth that had had a bath in rusty water (iron sulfate). A ceramic tile was placed on either side of the stack of papers/plants, then bound with a large rubber band. They were then placed in the steamer. We also wrapped a few 1/2" copper pipes with flowers and a heavier water color paper and placed them in the steamer. The heavier paper needed more steaming time than we had, but we did get some good results. 

While we waited for the 2-hour steaming time to end, we made small booklets with accordian-folded centers  for storing our papers when they dried.  We made covers from old text paper, and eco printings that I had done previously. Some of the students included small sticks as a frame around the cover collage.

Someone mentioned that this would be a good two-day project - one day of printing, overnight drying then processing the next day. This would be a good event for next Fall.

I enjoyed the day and even as a teacher, you learn a lot each time you eco print!!



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