The Essentials of Paper | Presentation & Demo


Monday, September 11
7:00-8:30 pm
Open to the public, free of charge but registration is encouraged

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Monday, September 11
7:00-8:30 pm
Open to the public, free of charge but registration is encouraged

Artists, students, educators and just the plain curious are invited to a free educational presentation about paper.  Sarah Becktel, Artist Educator for Strathmore Artists Paper, will present “The Essentials of Paper”, a 90-minute slide and hands-on presentation.  The presentation will focus on how understanding a paper’s fiber, weight, texture, surface, grade and permanency affect an artist’s choice and usage of fine art paper. Attendees participate in hands-on exercises, using a selection of papers and drawing materials. The goal of the presentation is to provide information to help artists select the right papers for their medium and techniques.  Each attendee will some free goodies including  Strathmore papers,  a selection of drawing materials and a watercolor brush.  Open to the public free of charge.  Space is limited so registration is encouraged.

The presentation will cover all aspects of fine art drawing papers including:
– History of Writing Surfaces: parchment to papyrus to paper
– History of Paper: from China to Europe
– How Paper is Made: past and present
– Handmade paper vs. Machine made paper
– Components of Paper: fiber, watermark, surface texture, sizing, weight, permanence.
– Environmentally friendly papers and alternative fibers
– Types of Paper: newsprint, sketching, drawing, bristol, illustration, charcoal, pastel, watercolor, mixed-media
– Grades of Paper: student, artist, professional
– Paper Storage

About the Presenter:
Sarah Becktel is an artist who resides in Jersey City, NJ. She received her BFA in painting from the Tyler School of Art, and has also studied at Studio Incamminati in Philadelphia and the Art Students League in NYC. Sarah worked as the Product Research Director for the Colored Pencil Society of America from 2009 to 2015, during which time she tested colored pencils for lightfastness and educated members on archival issues of drawing materials. Sarah is a member of the American Society for Testing Materials (ASTM) where she helps to revise and maintain standards related to colored pencils and lightfast testing. Since 2005, Sarah has actively exhibited both her works on paper and oil paintings throughout the U.S. As an Artist Educator for Strathmore Artist Papers and Gamblin Artist’s Colors, Sarah gives lectures on the attributes and uses of fine art materials. Her work can be viewed at: