Paper is made from cellulose found in organic matter. True papers are thin sheets made from fibre that has been macerated; this softens the fibres until each individual filament is a separate unit and works water into their inter-molecular structure. Raw materials I use can be abaca, cotton linters, indigenous plant fibres such as thistle, and kozo (a Japanese fibre with silk like properties), all are pounded in my Hollander Beater for a length of time. The fibres, now pulp, are then mixed with water into a vat. The paper mould and deckle that I use are normally wire mesh and of varying sizes, and I work western style. I dip the mould and deckle into the vat and lift a thin stratum of diluted pulp.
The water drains through the fine openings of the mesh, leaving a sheet of knitted, clotted fibre upon the mould's surface. I turn this paper out into a dry felt or cloth. This action is called 'cooching', or to turn out onto a table or board with a rounded top especially made for this purpose.
Bill Scott Sculpture Centre
Edinburgh Sculpture Workshop