I will be teaching a 3-day katazome class from June 26-28 at the Grand Marais Art Colony (GMAC) in Grand Marais, Minnesota. The course is suitable for beginners. I’ve taught katazome techniques on fabric at GMAC twice in the past (2012 & 2019).
In this class, we’ll be making nature-inspired katazome samples on both cloth and paper. I will test some ideas and approaches as I plan the details of the workshop, sharing my process here on the blog.
First, I plan to make a small concertina book based on the mock-up shown here. I will test several different types of paper to see what works best for this application. If all goes well, I will have a nice example to show students . Then, I hope to be able to create an “open edition” of the book, i.e., I can create copies whenever I want, trying out different color palettes, for example.
What led to this idea?
As you can see from my recent work, I love drawing and sketching flowers. I am not yet done with this theme! Two recent learning experiences have led to the idea of creating a katazome book.
In 2021 I took a terrific workshop at Grand Marais Art Colony with Karen Kunc (see Constellation Studios in Lincoln, Nebraska) called From Block to Book. We created reduction woodcut prints and made a concertina book from our prints. We made enough prints to create an edition of 7 books, which I completed at home and gave as holiday gifts that year. My chosen theme was flowers, and here are my completed books.
Then, just this January I participated in a workshop on the Domestika platform taught by Spanish Illustrator/Artist Jesus Cisneros called Artist Notebooks: Explore Illustration Techniques. It was a wonderful course to stimulate the imagination during this cold, dark, and monochrome season. Cisneros teaches how to create colored paper by rubbing a very thin layer of oil pigment onto the surface with the corner of a paper towel or tissue. Multiple colors can be blended on the same piece, if desired.
Then, using the theme of “garden and forest,” we were encouraged to create a series of symmetrically folded and cut plant and/or insect forms using the paper colored this way. The two examples of this shown here are from my sketchbook.
This particular technique – rubbing pigment on the paper – is similar to the way that pigments are applied to fabric in katazome. But rather than using oil as the medium, soybean juice is used along with a dry brush. Similar effects such as smooth blending and graduation of color can be achieved. This is one of the qualities of katazome that I particularly enjoy. In addition, with the folded and cut paper designs, there is a play of positive and negative space – “notan” – that is also an important part of designing stencils for katazome.
Please watch this space to see how this project (and workshop plan) progresses! For a full description of the workshop I will be teaching, Click Here.