Hi! My name is Travis Gray and this is
Travis Finds Out, from Regenerative Road Trip today! We are going
to be more learning about a cool art form called Suminagashi. Lots of
cultures have a paper marbling style of art, but historians think that Suminagashi started it all. It was invented in Japan around 1150 A.D.
It was used to create backgrounds for poems and other paintings. Translated to
English it means “floating ink,” which is exactly what you do! You’re floating the
ink on water, letting it swirl around a bit, and then soaking the ink onto paper
to make amazing natural art… that’s never the same twice. While the Japanese used
it to write poetry, kids nowadays can use the marble paper to write notes to people,
wrap presents, or just leave it like it is — as amazing natural art. [Miriam]: It’s
considered old-fashioned, yeah. People were fascinated they were doing it when we
were there. [Travis]: When you get down to it, Suminagashi is really simple.
First thing you’re going to need to do is take a bottle of ink, you can choose
whatever color you want, I’m using red. So you’re going to take the bottle and
squeeze it a little bit and let it do that. [Miriam]: I say also put the colors inside each other. You don’t have to do that if you get bored. It’s a good way to start. So you
are in charge. What color do you want to start with? You can bring it
way down to the water surface. That’s perfect.
Now what I would do is I would go with yellow inside, right? Let me show you a little faster. Yellow, then orange, then yellow… You’re starting to get your circles. Now it’s really up to you. Black is very substantial. Yeah, its
strong feeling you get from the black. [Travis]: Now we’re going to take a sheet of paper then
we’re going to lay the paper flatly on the water.
Now wait a couple seconds… okay… should be enough time. Pull the paper out and voila! [Miriam]: When you’re working alone, you can make the tray as complicated as you like [Travis and Ainsley]: Whoa! That’s pretty! [Travis]: That looks like a moon! [Miriam]: You know, this is yours to experiment with.
[Ainsley]: I’m trying to be a scientist to see what happens. [Miriam]: Say that again?
[Ainsley]: I’m trying to be a scientist to see what
happens. [Miriam]: Oh, of course! I think the part of what you’ll see is that no matter what
you do, it will go into a fractal shape. It will go into nature’s shape of water. The
same way like a river will do that. [Travis]: Look at that black thing right there! That’s cool! Look at that black horseshoe!
[Miriam]: You know, it’s the greatest… that contrast, isn’t it? [Travis]: The second print in Suminagashi is called the “ghost print,” and sometimes it’s really pretty because it won’t turn out the
same as that because the water is always moving. [Travis]: Can you do more than more
ghost print? [Miriam]: You could go for as long as you want, and then you’ll find out when it’s over. [Kids]: Whoa!
[Miriam]: This is your exquisite masterpiece! Look at that! I’ll be darned. It came out so well. So I think we’re starting and
you’re starting to get to the end of your ghost prints here.
[Ainsley]: Because we can’t write our
names on them? [Miriam]: Not until they’re totally dry. Does your mom or your dad have an iron?
[Miriam]: Because they could iron them when they’re done. When they’re dry they’re really pretty when they’re totally flat. Don’t forget you can blow on it
since we’re inside if you need to. See, because you’re getting this super cool, very delicate lines and breakout lines. [Ainsley]: Wow! Beautiful! [Miriam]: It is beautiful. [Kids]: Wow! [Travis]: Wait, oops! There’s a really wet part and I accidentally turned it over to the wet part. [Miriam]: Yup. You know the one thing that’s always a little bit annoying is the paper is
not actually not that strong. So you have to lift it very gently. [Travis]: Ainsley, that is cool! I wonder what your your two prints are going to look like? [Miriam]: Here’s the thing. No one ever knows what it’s going to look like. You think you know what what it’s going to look like. But when you start with
the paper, the paper moves it. I’ve been doing this for a really long time I can never get
it exactly the way I want it. But that’s part of it keeps me interested! [Travis]: As you
can see every time is unique. Even if you wanted to, you can’t have both of the same. [Miriam]: So I don’t know if it’s going to work… or if it’s going to be weird, or what. So where would you like some? [Travis]: How about in the center? [Miriam]: Right about here? Okay, let’s see what I can get…. [Kids]: Whoooooaaaaa!
[Miriam laughs] [Miriam]: So there’s a word for that… it’s called “repulsant.” Turpentine is a repulsant and soap is a repulsant. And also white ink functions as a repulsant. [Travis]: You can add more swirls by letting the environment’s wind take care of it You can also use paintbrushes to stir it up. Or a trick that Ms. Miriam showed me: You can blow on it to make your own swirls . What you need, to do Suminagashi at home is: a baking pan filled about a half an inch up with water, a fine set of inks and paper. I want to say thank you to Ms Miriam Sagan, the Artist-In-Residence here at Agate Fossil Beds And to all of our supporters on
Patreon See you next time on “Travis Finds Out!”