Tuesday, February 8, 2011

When Everything Goes Right

Sometimes  a poster comes across your bench, printed on thin paper from the 19-teens and lined with acrylic glue and fabric.  You think it is going to be a complete
fabric lining removed, heat set tissue still in place
monster to work on.  Maybe I can just stabilize it, 
encapsulate it with some buffered paper in the back, because it is 30" x 20" and on thin paper which could mean many, many, hours of coaxing, skimming and lifting with a spatula or scalpel, and many, many opportunities to run the scalpel through the poster.  And so you mend another copy of the poster for the exhibit, and let the scary one linger in the drawer for a bit, until you feel ready to tackle the monster. 

And, then...and then...everything goes right! The fabric lifts easily when you slip the spatula under the edge and eventually comes off in one piece.  The heat set tissue, instead of being firmly tangled in the fibers of the paper, is merely sitting on top in most places and peels away in big, easy strips.  The strips of heat set start littering the floor and you make a mental note to vacuum when you're done, but first a new blade on the scalpel to work on the more stubborn spots... but you're getting
heat set coming off, bare paper exposed
there. And very soon you have a smooth surface that needs a little mending here and there, but otherwise looks a whole lot better than when you started. Phew!

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