The Marbling Process

Turkish marbling or ebru is a monotype printing process in which each paper created is truly one of a kind. It can be an unpredictable process but when all the various components come together it’s a satisfying one!

The first step is preparing the size. Carrageenan and water are mixed together, making the water a slightly thicker consistency. The size is then poured into a marbling tank and left overnight. The next step is mixing the paint to the desired consistency and adding the surfactant. The addition of surfactant allows the paint to expand and float on the surface of the size. Using whisks, pipettes or brushes the prepared paint is applied on top of the size. Once the paint is applied it can be manipulated into different patterns using combs, rakes or a stylus. Paper treated with a mordant is laid down on the surface of the size and the floating paint adheres to it. The paper is lifted from the size, washed and hung to dry. Any remaining paint left on the surface of the size is skimmed off and the seemingly magic process repeated.

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