Wookey Hole

1 Feb


I was given a stack of vintage art papers by a kind benefactor a while back and I am gradually using them for drawing and printmaking. Today’s daily drawing was done on a beautiful piece of W.S.H. & Co British Handmade Paper, made at the Wookey Hole paper mill near Cheddar in Somerset in the West Country. Wookey Hole is probably more famous for its wonderful ancient caves, the legend of the Witch and its cave-aged Cheddar cheese, but in amongst all of this is a paper mill that has been operating over 400 years, since at least 1610. The paper is beautifully textured with deckle edges, a large watermark and a slightly bluish tint.

I had used this sheet of paper to do a bit of opportunistic marbling. A fellow artist had some left over black oil paint mixed with turps and chucked it into a bowl of water with washing up liquid and the surface went all marbly. So I grabbed a few sheets of paper and laid them on top and got some lovely marbled effects. I scribbled this while Husb was Skyping a relative this evening, using compressed charcoal and black and white conte crayons. It took about 10 minutes. It is fairly accurate but makes him look much older than he is.

I like to spend my time fondling beautiful papers and doing research and reading about them. I am such a geek πŸ˜€

10 Responses to “Wookey Hole”

  1. Scott January 9, 2016 at 16:04 #

    09.01.16 I too have been given a roll of several sheets paper. Half of it is watermarked WSH & Co and has the Brittania watermark. It is very thin and parchment-like, not water-colour paper I think. 26 x 17 inches The rest is more like cartridge paper but I have wetted it and strtched it onto a board. It becomes beautifully flat but doesn’t take water colour really well. 30 x 22 inches Would this be WSH paper too, do you think?

    • Rosie Scribblah January 10, 2016 at 11:31 #

      Ooh that’s interesting. I have a similar WSH to your thin one and it’s beautiful for charcoal drawing. The other paper, I don’t know. I think WSH would have watermarked it. There’s a Facebook page called Vintage Paper Co that might be helpful. Good luck 😊

  2. mrsdaffodil February 2, 2015 at 20:00 #

    Powerful drawing, very memorable. I’m in the paper geek society with you!

  3. allesistgut February 2, 2015 at 08:42 #

    This is an really impressive piece of art. And I love the paper, too! Have a lovely Monday! πŸ˜‰

    • Rosie Scribblah February 2, 2015 at 12:59 #

      Thank you so much. I enjoyed using the paper. I hope to do more later πŸ™‚

  4. anna warren portfolio February 2, 2015 at 02:27 #

    I had no idea there was a paper maker at Wookey Hole – we often used to go there on school trips when I was a kid. That stash of paper is a wonderful resource!

    • Rosie Scribblah February 2, 2015 at 05:32 #

      I only found out when I researched the watermark on the paper. I am determined to go there this year

  5. claradoodles February 1, 2015 at 21:37 #

    Oh I love this! Lucky you for owning those papers – although if it were me I would be too afraid of messing them up, ha! This drawing/sketch of your husband is very loose and free…well done πŸ™‚ Also I read a couple of years back that Wookey Hole had advertised in the job centre for a witch πŸ˜€ I was so tempted to apply!

    • Rosie Scribblah February 1, 2015 at 22:09 #

      hahahaha yes, I remember reading about that. There is a witch on duty at all times. I’m determined to get there this year, it isn’t far but I’ve never been.

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