I am frantically getting my work ready for Artweeks. I’m off to my brother’s wedding in Australia and will be visiting my son in Singapore (so the blog will have a holiday after Easter) maybe with some intermittent posts.
When you do this sort of painting it is spontaneous and the watercolour is not completely controllable. So it would be too intimidating to work on stretched paper. In Chinese prints, the artwork is backed afterwards.
If you want to try this, look it up on Your tube as there are plenty of good demonstrations there. I’ll just explain the principles.
I lay the cat picture face down on the table (which was the glueing surface). Then I pasted over the whole print with thinnish wheat starch glue until it was gummy all over and superflat. (Above left) I rolled up a sheet of Chinese rice paper, cut 5cm larger all round and gently unrolled it over the print, brushing it down with a large clean brush. (above right, just before pasting the edges)
I then added paste to the edges and picked it up, turned it over and lay it onto the pasting board, face up. It is now double thickness and nicely stretched.
I added my Chinese chop signature (and my name in pencil) and framed it. These days I am more careful adding my chop signature as I’ve made too many mess-ups. I draw a pale line in pencil which will be covered by the chop, lay the print on some thick felt, press the chop into the Chinese red paste and do a careful gentle vertical and horizontal rocking motion.