I stretched the tracing paper, and it was surprisingly absorbent, and VERY fragile. Then, when it had dried, I tried painting on it again. The same image, which is interesting to me, but might be getting a bit dull for anyone reading this – sorry!
I very gently used sticks of watercolour ink after re-wetting the paper for this image. You can’t smudge them like pastels, as the sticks are very hard, but they did crumble a little. The sticks also dragged the paper and it split. This looks stiffer than the pastel version. I’ll put it against the light.
It is far more translucent than I thought it would be, and than it is on a solid back. It is also looser and more abstract than the pastel. But because I couldn’t smudge the inks together, there is no subtlety to the colours. I’m not sure about the split paper though. I like the fact you can see through it, but it is looks too straight and deliberate.
I made one in watercolour. The wetness seemed to dissolve the paper! But I wanted to see how it would work once the paper dried, so I kept going. Here it is drying out on its board:
Once it dried, the breaks in the paper remained. I rather like these, as they echo the damaged celluloid in the original film frame. I didn’t make them by pulling the paper – the paper sprang the gaps because of the way its own fibres lay, I think. They make the paper almost lacy. Here it is against the light:
I’m more pleased with this one. The colours are a bit sober. I also wonder whether my handling of the paper made it more likely to dissolve, so I paint another more solid looking stretched sheet, then wait to see what it does.
The paper behaves almost the same way. I love these colours, but the tears aren’t as wilful-seeming. Against the light, they really do seem to relate to the damaged cine frame and its lost narrative by being so fragile and wafer-ey (if that makes sense?)