Current working copy
koi: graphite and water soluble pencil and water

In my last blogpost here (edit: actually second to last, since I also posted the mini crochet stitch tutorial), I told you that I was trying to get at least one copy of 346 done before the term break. (Tomorrow is end of term and then the kids have a two week vacation during which I can’t work in my studio and anyway will have to finally start packing boxes.)

This whole thing is coming along surprisingly well. In the last week I have drawn hundreds of fish to sit in the margins of the scroll. I have been editing the text some more, and finally printed a version onto white drawing paper. The final version is supposed to be on a white Japanese paper, which I have purchased, and is sitting in my studio right behind me at this moment.


a sample page of the scroll

There are some more edits in pencil marked on the scroll as it is, but once these are implemented, I am actually ready to print a first copy on the actual paper I want to use.
I am really happy with how the scroll itself has come along, with the fish swimming among the words, and the book form works well with it, too. My idea is that the finished scroll in its case will sit in a larger box which will also contain – well, maybe the add-ons will be a surprise. This will be something to finish after the move in any case.

What I am still working on is the details of the construction of the cylinder in which the scroll is sitting. For this third trial I added lips made from felt to the opening in the tube, which I then covered (complete with the felt) in tyvek:

lips of felt
lips of felt

That works really well for the scroll, and makes the seams where there is a double thickness and the paper has gone stiff from glue and paste move much better through the slit. Before the addition of these lips it always caught on those seams, now it moves very pleasantly. The top and bottom discs are also attached with tyvek. I have to add the scroll before I can put on the second disc, therefore I added another layer of tyvek to the main body after I added the second disc (to hide the material overlapping from the bottom). And then I glued on the title page, so to say.

This works all works well enough. But what is bothering me is that a bit of the cardboard tube remains visible where the slit is situated, and generally it doesn’t look very tidy yet:

a bit of cardboard peeping out

But it shouldn’t be too hard to eliminate this last bit of unpleasantness for the final copy. – I will hopefully finish all this during the weekend. And on Tuesday I am going to read a bit from it on the Nottingham Writer’s Studio Social. (If you are in Nottingham and would like to come along, let me know!)

The thing that pleases me most I kept for the end: For making the casing for 346 I used a cardboard mailing tube. It has plastic stoppers on both ends, and it turns out those fit perfectly over the yoghurt glasses I am using in my studio. – This makes me so happy it is silly.

tube’s end fits perfectly over the yoghurt glass that holds my paste-glue mixture


2 replies on “Update on 346”

  1. Love the fish! I think the scroll is a really good format for this piece, and I’m sure you will find a way to hide that little bit of cardboard. David commented that your case looks like a giant film canister. And so it does. ; ]

    Good luck with the packing!

    1. Thanks, Cathryn, both for the comment and the good wishes! Packing has finally started here, and I already feel like living in a madhouse, although I have packed just the tiniest fraction of what will need to go in.
      Indeed I managed to hide the cardboard in the second trial. Just too bad that this time the scroll didn’t fit in. A problem to be solved after the move. At least I have a final version of the scroll itself.

      Interested that David thought of a film canister. I hadn’t thought of that. But you are right, it does have these proportions.

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