PREPARING PAPER FOR WATERCOLOURING
 
Heyoooo, this is something I don't normally do, but I learned this cool technique to make watercolouring a little easier and nicer. It helps with the buckling of the paper when you use a lot of water when painting, like I do. 

It's something called "stretching the fibers" and I'm here to show how it's done! Or, how I learned to do it. I only learned to do this yesterday, so my results might not be perfect, but my professional artist friend showed me how to do it and today I did it myself! Someone might do it differently than me, though.

SETUP:

This is what my setup looked. I had to do this on my balcony, since I don't have room anywhere else in my apartment lol

WHAT YOU NEED:

- A clean, flat surface that can be moved out of the way, as the papers need to dry a long time, so avoid doing this on just a table surface. I used a part of my old living room table for this purpose, because it's A) Big and B) movable. If you don't need much paper, use a smaller surface.
- Paper towels for taking care of the excess water
- Ruler to scoop out the excess water
- Adhesive tape or paper, I don't know what it's in english, but it's basically tape/paper that works once you wet it.
- Paper, of course
- A basin of cold water (it needs to be cold)
- An assistant kitty (totally optional, I had 2)

THE STEPS:

Soak the paper in cold water, try to move it around, for example bend it in the water. My basin was a little too small for this paper, but I managed. The paper needs to be soaked for a couple of minutes. After a while, you can see that the soaking has worked if it bends smoothly when you move it around the basin. It's not done, if the paper bends like dry paper and leaves a crease.

Place it on the flat surface and leave some room for the adhesive paper, so basically don't leave too little room, like you can see I accidentally did lol

Measure how much you need the adhesive paper, and rip/cut it

Briefly soak in the water. Just a dip underwater will do the trick.

Add the adhesive paper around the paper and scoop excess water with the ruler. Bare in mind that the adhesive paper cannot be removed from the paper once it dries, so you need to cut it.

Done! Now let it dry overnight, preferably somewhere where pets are not allowed. I moved mine to the clothes closet. If there's some hair on the wet paper, fret not: it can be dusted off once the paper dries. Which I will have to do to these because my hairy assistants were very "helpful".

This is what the finished, dried paper looks like. This is the paper my friend showed me this technique with yesterday, so it looks good, there's no guarantee mine will be as good haha.