Prepping Watercolor Paper

These are the beginnings of backgrounds for an swap I’m participating in. Each member is to make 25 pages based on the theme of “winter” for the swap. I decided for my pages I would use watercolor paper (140#) and do a wash technique on the very bottom layer. Then work my way forward with stamps and paints and images.

What I didn’t do was to pull out my art techniques book and read up on watercolor before I started! But, I’ve been known to just jump in and see what happens.

What I learned was that it’s probably best to read first. If I had, I would have “stretched” these dry pages before I did the wash, and according to the book, they would not have then curled. Stretching, apparently, is done by taping the dry watercolor paper to a solid surface. Then brushing it with plain water to soak it, and allowing it to dry while still taped. Which should then maintain a flat surface as you apply further layers of watercolors.

Live and learn, and who knows, maybe they’ll still flatten out?

2 thoughts on “Prepping Watercolor Paper

  1. Judy, I love that background. I am not participating in the swap but the background is perfect. You’ll find once you cut your pages to size and maybe weigh them under a heavy book for a day or two or glue them to a heavy cardboard they will flatten out. I would still find a way to use them. They definitely say winter to me… the way, I’ve never heard of stretching paper. Thanks for the tip.

  2. Thanks for the idea and technique of stretching the paper…. I have to admit, I usually use an iron. Good luck with the pages, your beginning backgrounds look great!

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