Susan & Mari: friends who collage January 02 2024

Susan Hartman:

Mari and I have different stories about what we do with our creative grist. I credit Mari for getting me rolling with projects. We inspire one another regularly with new ideas. In 2020 cancer loomed - leading me to an "early retirement" and prompting a new perspective. "By 2022, my treatment was finished, and my life changed." I became a support to other survivors through a website capturing personal stories with helpful resources. Mari introduced me to Wellness Coins, coins with inspirational messaging, which I left at my cancer center in Providence, RI gifting to others. In the past year, I've made over 250 pieces, branching into creating journals and items using similar creative collaging and Paper Connection's *Pastiche collection of paper samples. I include additional material transfers from my garden plantings. Sometimes my pieces become large compilations which I break into other imagery. Any leftover scraps become something else with no waste of materials or resources. Mari is a super clever person and does amazing work. She offered the first light of encouragement during a time of uncertainty.

"We are a great support to each other on our separate and unique journeys."

Mari Ryan:

My creative journey has had many starts and stops.

In 2003 I picked up photography, which has remained my primary creative outlet. By 2019 I started attending a monthly creative networking group, learning collage. I was smitten with collecting paper and playing with a variety of techniques. When the pandemic hit, I knew I had fostered the perfect hobby. Since then, I have expanded my interests including mixed media and watercolor. 2021 brought a new home allowing space for an art studio. I knew this to be a key as I worked less and created more.

"My art certainly is therapeutic for everyday life and the friendship with Susan is so valuable."

*note from Paper Connection: although the Paper Pastiche monthly subsription pack has been halted for now, we are making "Odds & Ends" collage packs described in our recent blog post: Way to Play.

September's Pastiche-Subscription Sampler September 01 2022

With a hint of cooler days to come, our September Pastiche will warm you with some rich, jewel-toned papers. This is our third month of Pastiche and moving full steam ahead. These fallish colors and textures are sure to get your creative juices thrumming! September Pastiche includes a bit of Lokta paper: Off- White Floral on Kelly Green, Woodblock Hands, Turquoise, and Woodblock Quatrefoil. Prints and solids at the ready. We've talked about Lokta and the bush's strong, silky fibers, and its leadership as a main source of fiber for local papermakers of Nepal. Don't forget about its characteristics of smooth-surfaced, ideal for book arts, printing, card making, collage, box making, sewing, and interior design projects. You can check out our complete Lokta family of papers here. We've got a 100% Rayon Red in the bunch. Very fabric-like which lends itself to sewing, laser printers, invitations, cards, graphics, etc. Acid-free and quiet (no-noise paper). Check out the entire Rayon Family here. Japanese Lace Asanoha is from the classic hemp leaf and comes in six colors. Delicate-looking pattern, excellent for collages and many crafts/applications. Oh yes! Katazome! Traditional designs are reminiscent of Southeast Asian batiks. These are opaque patterned papers great for book covers, end sheets, boxes, graphic design, framing, origami, and mixed media projects. Katazome, or Sarasa paper is decorated with a combo of stenciling and resist dyeing. It's laborious but the results are so lovely. See for yourself. Last, but never at the end of the line is An-Jing Lucy Yellow-Tan, the fun and funky family member of our An-Jing paper collection handmade mainly from xuan ("shwen") fiber. Typically these papers are lightweight and ideal for brush painting, and collage. They are and a bit dainty to work with, so consider the challenges in using them for printing; good for hand-printing (gently apply inked block to paper- or paper to inked block- press by hand.) You can check out the entire family here.
More to Come!
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Calling All Makers, Artists, and Imagineers September 01 2022

Fricka Jones, gyotaku, gampi benibana paper, washiMimi King, EtchingThe creative power of the universe flows through each of us. From a single molecule to a supernova, giving voice to our journeys through self-expression is to share with the larger community - to spur our direction with refreshing perspectives, revisited or otherwise. Your platform of sharing and filling can continue here at Paper Connection International. Show your work in paper through your love of paper exploration. Being curious and open has gotten you this far, perhaps changing the way you work with paper and its properties gets you even further. Do you work with our papers? Are you working with our papers? Tell us about it! We'd love to spotlight your maker-ness. Want to share your portfolio or next show? Even better. Click here to leave your contact info and a brief idea of what you are working on/with/out, and we'll get back to you with the next steps. Kit Davies, mini book The soul Fricka Jones, Waterfall, origamiof why we do, what we do here at Paper Connection, is sharing the art and artistry of using paper, from inception to completion. Communities around the world are fed from paper's iterations. Families thrive by providing an art form they can pass down to future generations. You also can be inspired by the beauty, breadth of natural materials, workmanship, and care that goes into each sheet of paper, packed carefully - sent directly to you - ready to help tell your story. Let us give back in this way while giving thanks for all you do.Book with hanji signatures. Bari Zaki. Julie Miller, joomchi, paper felting Click here to tell us more about you.

A Paper Pastiche- New Subscription Sampler August 12 2022

Helpful Details!
More Colors, Weights, Depths, to Come!
paper sampler, July Pastiche, collage pack Last Month's Beauties

Summer for many countries.

The weather flecks between less consistent heat, with lower temps that remind us the season is just beginning to transition from the strength of July's sun. July was the premiere launch of our subscription service. We had so much fun deciding what we wanted for each month and came up with tons of winners!

The low-down on August's Pastiche selections:

With a hint of cooler days to come, August holds Lokta's Olive Brown and Pumpkin as two earthy and organic pals. The lokta bush produces strong but silky fibers, and is the main source of fiber for local papermakers of Nepal. Nepali hand papermakers are maintaining traditional hand papermaking methods in their communities, and at the same time sustaining their livelihoods. The result is a strong, somewhat smooth-surfaced sheet, ideal for book arts, printing, card making, collage, box making, sewing, and interior design projects. You can check out our complete lokta family of papers here. Pull and shape, tear and sew, paint and crumble, print and fold. This Paper Pastiche is beauty coming your way in bite-size pieces. Laurelai Designs are fashion and eco-conscious patterns designed by a couple of paperwomen exclusively for Paper Connection International. All are silk-screened on a handmade, recycled, cotton paper chosen for its mat surface. All backs and fronts of each of the 18 styles meant to work in any combination, for card, box, and bookmaking and, of course, collage, made from handmade recycled silkscreened rag paper. The upbeat and bold patterns will certainly inspire! Speaking of changing weather, An-Jing Meteor Shower has some very interesting properties when printed. Recently used in the making of Gyotaku prints, this paper is way too cool. Water-based ink allowed the 'meteors' to show through. All handmade in Sichuan, China of "xuan" (pronounced "shwen") fiber is traditionally used for painting calligraphy. It's been used for making boxes, envelope liners, end pages, lampshades, quilling, collage, and, of course, printing. Head on over to and see the rest of the pack. This yellow Tengujoushi is the machine-made version of the thinnest specialty Japanese paper in the world. Funny how super light-weight it is but crazy strong. 100% hemp fiber, prepared by hand, with the final sheets formed by machine. It's sheer and comes in soft/soothing colors (black too). Conservators love this paper for strengthening holes in pages or works on paper, but it's also ideal for collage, like "chigiri-e" printmaking-chine collé, and silkscreen with wax. Japanese Lace Uminami or "Sekaiha" with backing. Everyone needs to have a piece of paper lace. If for no other reason than imagination. A lovely/traditional pattern of waves. So delicate it's backed with a thin paper. The overall effect is translucent minus the open spaces of lace. Think collage, lampshades, window treatments, bookmaking, card designs, paper sculpture. And there is the all handmade Jewel-Toned Cotton Lime Green Stripes, screen printed stripes adorning a bright green, opaque paper made from cotton from recycled t-shirts. It's got a nice sturdy body that will complement many applications- even making posters with letterpress printed messages. Want to sign up?