Paper Poppies

Paper Poppies

The Sunday Paper #367

June 13, 2021

I had a lovely podcast interview with Jackie Radford, a papermaker and bookbinder working in her studio near Charlotte, NC. Radford’s work is heavily influenced by the texture and sensory nature of the materials she works with — she needs to feel them as much as see them. During the COVID pandemic, she immersed herself in making paper with pure cotton rag, pulling over 5,000 sheets of handmade paper. The slow, meditative practice of papermaking provided an anchor during the turbulence of a global pandemic, and she is now busy trying to keep up with orders on Etsy. Enjoy our conversation!

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You can probably tell that I love paper communities. One thing I really enjoy over in The Paper Studio (my free facebook community) is our Flaunt it Fridays. We share what we’ve done (with paper) during the week. Elaine Chu shared these hibiscus and poppy crepe paper flowers that she created online with Agniezka Spiesny through Craft Contemporary (based in L.A.). Not only do we get to see paper creations, but we learn about instructors, online classes, organizations, exhibitions, paper, and so much more.

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Check out how this sculptural bookworm — 140 feet of scripts and songbooks, twisted along a steel skeleton — corkscrews across the Drama Book Shop in Manhattan. This is a great story about how Lin-Manuel Miranda and friends gave an old bookstore a new life.

The new location of the Drama Book Shop, with a sculptural representation of a bookworm and a banquette inspired by “The Shop Around the Corner,” is set to open this week.

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Over 150 people attended my free zoom workshop last Saturday, and we created Accordion Solstice Books. You can watch the replay and make your own here. I showed my artist’s book, Birth Moon, which I created 20+ years ago after my son was born during a lunar eclipse. This book is the inspiration for the Accordion Solstice Book.

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YES!! I love this excerpt of an excerpt from the exhibition catalogue, Cezanne Drawing, on view at The Museum of Modern Art through September 25: “Usually relegated to a supporting, or background, role—indeed the very terms for paper are “support” and “ground”—paper is instead the central protagonist in Cézanne’s still lifes. The nomenclature “work on paper” is similarly misleading. The work is not on paper, it is paper. Watercolor’s luminosity—its very being—is wholly dependent on the sheet on which it is painted; its tone, its brilliance, a balance between transparent pigment and the bright paper seen through.” And it goes on… Hooray for the recognition of paper!

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Paper Tidbits:

  • There’s one spot left in my live, online Panel Lampshade Workshop on August 2nd.
  • I’m looking forward to summer 2022, when I’ll be hosting Master Classes and the Red Cliff Paper Retreat in my studio after a 2-year hiatus! Read more about the Master Class and express your interest by clicking on Apply Now (if you were signed up for a 2020 class, you’re already on the list)!

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In the Studio:

I’ve been recording the instructional videos for my upcoming Paper + Light online class that begins on June 21st. For some reason, I always dread filming, but I have to say that I enjoy it once I get going. There’s a similar creative process to making art. I get to choose fun papers, like this marbled paper by Iris Nevins that is in my current Curated Paper Collection (a few sets are still available). And as I’m filming, I often come up with ideas and tips to share with participants. My filming style is a bit like teaching in person. I imagine that I’m there with you, describing what I’m doing (but I do get to edit out those bloopers).

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Featured this week in my Studio shop:

Curated Paper Collection #2, The Papermaker’s Companion, Paper + Light Online Class, Playing With Pop-Ups

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