Introduction: Paper Marbling 101 - Making the Nonpareil Pattern

About: Paper marbling artist, instructor, performer based out of the PNW.

A tutorial on how to make the nonpareil pattern when marbling.

The nonpareil pattern is the third of what I like to call the the base patterns. There are three base patterns, which make the basic foundation for more detailed advanced patterns. The better you are with the base patterns the better your results will be as you progress in to the advanced patterns and techniques. So practice your base patterns.

You will need a tray, carrageenan based size, paint/color, paint pallet, marbling brushes, bamboo skewer, marbling comb, and alumed paper.

Step 1: Stone Pattern

Use your bushes to splatter paint onto the top of the carrageenan size to make the stone pattern. Use 3-5 different colors. Use the darker colors first.

Check out the stone pattern video tutorial for demos of the stone pattern.

Step 2: Zigzag Pattern

Set your brushes aside and pick up the bamboo skewer. The bamboo skewer is your stylus.

Starting at a far corner of the tray draw a horizontal line across the carrageenan size with your stylus. Then move the stylus 3/4 inch closer to yourself and and draw a horizontal line back to the other side of the tray. Continue these steps until you have done the whole tray.

Check out the zigzag video tutorial for demos of the zigzag pattern.

Step 3: Nonpareil Pattern

Set the stylus aside and pick up the marbling comb.

Start from the furthest part of the tray. Place the tip of the teeth of the comb in the the water and pull the the comb toward yourself in one one motion. Pull the comb perpendicular to the zigzag pattern to make the nonpareil. Set the comb aside when your done.

Check out the nonpareil video tutorial for demos of the nonpareil pattern.

Step 4: Mono-printing

Im using Texoprint paper pretreated with alum.

Lay the paper on the surface of the water. Start with the far edge and in a smooth motions lay the paper down without pausing or jerking the paper.

Or hold opposite corners of the paper and hold it so the paper bows in the middle. Lay the bowed paper on the water and lay the corner down in a smooth motion.

Now gently lift your paper from the tray and rinse off the carrageenan size and extra paint. Then place the paper somewhere safe to dry. Once its dry press the paper flat if it needs it.