St Cuthberts Mill are experts in manufacturing high quality artists papers. Our accomplished papermakers carefully make professional mould made papers, using one of the few remaining cylinder mould machines left in the world.

Contact us for more info!

Tel: +44 (0)1749 672015 Email: sales@stcuthbertsmill.com

Tuesday, 29 March 2016

Entries now open for the Sunday Times Watercolour Competition 2016

Now in its 29th year, The Sunday Times Watercolour Competition is the largest and most prestigious watercolour competition in the UK. Hugely popular with artists, gallery visitors and readers of The Sunday Times, the competition aims to celebrate and reward excellence and originality in the medium of watercolour.



Click on the link for more info - 


Thursday, 24 March 2016

Interview with artist
Eleanor Bedlow





Eleanor Bedlow creates imagined structures and landscapes beyond the restrictions of reality. Imaginary cities that occupy her mind are formulated into models and then into drawings. Fragmented land and cities are used as an allegory, conveying the turbulent relationship we have with our current and past surroundings. The imagined world is constantly evolving space both though nature and human intervention. The drawings are a snapshot of this world.

Eleanor Bedlow grew up in Kagawa, Japan before moving to London. She studied observational drawing at The Royal Drawing School in 2008, after gaining a degree in Fine Art from Falmouth College of Arts in 2005.
 
'Bones' Oil based pencil on paper
by Eleanor Bedlow




Interview with Eleanor Bedlow - 27/02/2016

Tell me about when you decided to go “pro”. When did you decide to dedicate yourself to your art. Give us an example of what that meant to you. (What pushed your artwork from amateur level to professional?)
I can’t think of a decisive moment when I made a decision to be an artist, but I can think of many occasions when I have decided to stay being an artist and to keep pushing my work forward. I work part time as a freelance drawing teacher. I enjoy teaching, which works well with my studio practice. Teaching means there is a constant dialogue with different perspectives on drawing which feeds into my own work. I value the freedom to take up residencies or concentrate on specific projects. I reference landscape and urban structures in my work so recent residences is India and Tuscany have been valuable in the development of my work.

Please state which St Cuthberts Mill papers you use and why?
I mostly use Somerset Satin white. I often work with a wide tonal range so when choosing paper I look for a paper where I can achieve a mat black to very soft subtle marks. I also look for versatility. I can use somerset for drawings as well as when etching and monoprinting. This versatility worked brilliantly when combining printing with drawing techniques.

Model by Eleanor Bedlow

How does the use of these papers enhance your work?  
It means I’m working with the paper rather then against it. The surface of the satin white is just right, so that I can to make some areas tonal but with the texture of the paper showing through. I know the paper really well now so can predict how it will reacts to different mediums.

Is there an artist you admire, did they inspire you to be an artist yourself?
There are many artist I have looked at who inspire me. I would pick Georges Seurat as an artist whose drawings have influenced the way I use mark making and tone together.

Do you remember the first painting you did that you were really proud of?
I remember making a painting in primary school in Japan of a woman picking rice that I was very proud of. I was lucky to experience art education in a Japanese and English school learning very different approaches at an early age.

'Column' Pencil on Paper by Eleanor Bedlow

What memorable responses have you had to your work?
With my landscape pieces, I like it when the audience starts to imagine living in the lands I have created and the problems that might face the people occupying the space. I remember a young girl being very concerned about how the people would get to and from a city perched on a tall rock formation. She decided there was probably a lift system within the structure.

What are you working on right now?
I create installations so that my work starts with drawing from observation. I recently made a city using clay to then poured plaster into the road. The plan was that the drips that fall down the side of the land would then support this net structure of the roads once the clay city was removed. I’ve ended up with a spider like form which I am now working from.

Work in progress
by Eleanor Bedlow

What’s the one painting you’ve painted that you will always keep?
Some of the sketches I have done while abroad I would never sell as they take me back to that place and time when I look at them.

What advice would you give to yourself, the artist you were 10 years ago?
To take every opportunity to learn new skills.

Work in progress
by Eleanor Bedlow

We'd like to thank Eleanor Bedlow for doing this interview with us - 
To view more of Eleanor's amazing work head over to her website!



For more info about Somerset paper:



Wednesday, 23 March 2016


Understanding grain direction





How the size a sheet of paper is reported gives important information to the ‘grain direction’ of paper. When a sheet is reported to be 760x560mm size, like Bockingford, this shows the sheet is ‘Short grain’.

How the dimensions are written denotes where the sheet ‘sat’ on the paper machine when it was made. The first dimension eg 760mm, is always the width, and the second dimension eg 560mm is always the length. Bockingford is 760x560mm, which means it was made in a landscape shape (as opposed to portrait). Because the second dimension shows the length of the sheet is shorter than the first (width) dimension the paper is called ‘Short Grain’. If the dimensions were the other way around it would be called ‘Long Grain’.


Grain direction is important, as there’s an inherent weakness with paper in the papers length. This is especially important if the paper is due to be folded. However, the Mould Made papers, grain direction is a lot less pronounced than with standard Fourdrinier (machine made) papers, as the fibres tend to lie in a more random pattern.


Wednesday, 16 March 2016

Interview with artist
Tina Warren





Originally from Liverpool, Tina Warren completed her schooling in Durban, South Africa. After leaving a career in the City of London she studied at Reigate School of Art and Design, Surrey. In 1997 she gained an HND with Distinction in Calligraphy, Heraldic Art and Illumination. She was awarded the Scriveners Company “Prize for achievement” by Donald Jackson MVO.
She is a member of CLAS, The Copperplate Special Interest Group, Cinque Port Scribes, Lindfield Scribes and Sussex Scribes. She is actively involved with The Edward Johnston Foundation in Ditchling, Sussex. Past member of SSI, North Downs Calligraphers, Letter Exchange and Guild of Glass Engravers.
Tina works freelance from her studio in Nutley, East Sussex. She is a CLAS (Calligraphy and Lettering Arts Society) accredited tutor as well as PTTLLS qualified to teach in Adult Education. Tina teaches her own group classes and workshops in Uckfield, Crowborough and Lewes in East Sussex. 
Tina Warren is an Ambassador for St Cuthberts Mill

Pointed pen on Saunders Waterford paper
by Tina Warren


Interview with Tina Warren / Alphabition Calligraphy - 7th March, 2016
Tell me about when you decided to go “pro”. When did you decide to dedicate yourself to your art. Give us an example of what that meant to you. (What pushed your artwork from amateur level to professional?)
Whilst working as an IT Business Analyst, twice a week I would rush home to attend Adult Ed ceramic lessons. I enjoyed the creative process. In 1993 my husband and I took an 18 month sabbatical to backpack around the world. On return I knew I did not want to return to work in the City. By pure chance we lived near Reigate School of Art and Design in Surrey and whilst admiring the work in the Diploma Show I started chatting to “a chap” about the dream of attending Art College. That “chap” was Head of RSAD!  After looking at my hastily thrown together portfolio I was offered a place on the HND for Calligraphy, Architectural Lettering and Heraldic Art (one of the last places in Europe to teach this). I had no idea if I could make a living from it but as I was in my mid 30's I gave it my all. I had tremendous support from my husband and tutors as they knew it was a planned career change for me. I left with a Distinction – something I am still proud of as I had never picked up a calligraphy pen or 000 paintbrush prior to 1995! Clients who came to my Diploma Show are still clients today and word of mouth meant I started to make a living from it.

Please state which St Cuthberts Mill papers you use and why?
I have been using St. Cuthbert's papers from my very first days at Reigate Art College (this was their water colour paper of choice). If I am not working on manuscript calfskin vellum (which is very expensive) then my “go to” paper I suggest to clients is Saunders Waterford 190 HP. The paper has just enough “tooth” to accept a metal nib allowing for the finest hairlines with a broad edge or pointed nib. I also use it for artwork where I may be doing illumination, heraldic art or gilding with gold.
For my more expressive and gestural calligraphy I may use a heavier weight Saunders Waterford NOT or Bockingford NOT to take advantage of the textured surface. Some of the pens I use for this type of calligraphy are less traditional and may be folded nibs (some made from cola cans) and some nibs making multiple registration marks eg. 5 lines. The tools “skip” along the textured surface and the end result is more spontaneous and less predictable - exactly what I want with sprays of ink being very desirable with this less formal work!

'Lest We Forget' on Saunders Waterford paper by Tina Warren

How does the use of these papers enhance your work?  
I have every confidence in recommending St Cuthbert's papers to prospective clients for commissions. I have also used Saunders Waterford for screen prints of my work.

Is there an artist you admire, did they inspire you to be an artist yourself?
The “father” of modern day western calligraphy is considered to be Edward Johnston. I am fortunate to live near Ditchling where Johnston and Eric Gill lived for some time. Calligraphy and lettering artists who have inspired me include Donald Jackson, Anne Hechle and Sheila Waters. Their use of colour and attention to fine detail, as well as their design skills, are still inspiring me today. Contemporary lettering artists who inspire include John Stevens and Brody Neuenswander who continue to push boundaries with their expressive and gestural lettering. My daughter recently made an interesting observation -  most members of the public would be able to name at least one famous artist – but very few would be able to name any calligrapher or lettering artist (despite Edward Johnston's Underground Roundel we are all familiar with!).

Do you remember the first painting you did that you were really proud of?
It was a broadsheet college project of Liverpool (where I was born) – finished on Saunders Waterford HP circa 1996. The calligraphy is not great (my first attempt at using Italic) but I'm still pleased with the heraldic artwork. The one piece I am most proud of is a full Letters Patent sampler I produced for my HND Diploma Show. Alongside a fair bit of heraldic artwork, it also has an illuminated border with raised gilding, shell gold, drawn lettering and Copperplate calligraphy. I produced it with the support of (the then) York Herald, Sir Henry Paston-Bedingfeld. I think he thought I was slightly unhinged to attempt it as I had to produce quite a lot of other artwork to showcase my skills for my Diploma Show. I went up to see him at the College of Arms on a regular basis to ensure authenticity. To accompany the Letters Patent I also produced a Library Painting of the same Arms on stretched vellum as well as artwork for reproduction in the form of an Ex Libris book plate bearing the same arms.

'The pen is mightier than the sword' 
on Saunders Waterford paper by Tina Warren

What memorable responses have you had to your work?
Calligraphy and lettering art commissions are incredibly rewarding - words are personal, special and emotional. It is not unheard of for clients to blink back tears when they collect work. The emotional response is amazing and I feel very privileged to share in that moment. The possibilities with words, and how to arrange and portray them, are endless.
A common feedback comment from classes and workshops is that they should be offered on the NHS as folk find them quite therapeutic!
The architect of The Shard, Renzo Piano, turned his initial drawing of the Shard into a print which was given to Her Majesty The Queen to commemorate her visit. I was asked to write the calligraphy that accompanied the print. I am delighted she has some of my work!

What are you working on right now?
I have long standing clients so there is always regular work I am preparing for them, along with church Books of Remembrance, corporate and civil documents, commissions for words of special meaning, weddings, dinners etc. I am also a calligraphy tutor and preparation for my 3 weekly classes and monthly all day workshops is always ongoing. I am also preparing some pieces for the Garden Show in Firle where I will be demonstrating and selling my work in the Georgian Riding Stable, 22 April – 24 April 2016.

What’s the one painting you’ve painted that you will always keep?
I think it has to be the Letters Patent as it showcases quite a few of the skills I learned at Reigate on one piece and enabled me to change career to that of Professional Artist.

'Twinning Charter'
on Saunders Waterford paper by Tina Warren
What advice would you give to yourself, the artist you were 10 years ago?
Believe in yourself more. Don't be afraid to put yourself out there - mix with other calligraphers and artists of different disciplines. Working solo and being self employed can be quite isolating. Social media has been very positive for me as building relationships with other creative folk has helped me grow as an artist. There is always work out there that is better or worse  and if you feel like giving up, remember why you started!
Anything else you'd like to mention that I didn't ask?
I am passionate about keeping heritage crafts such as calligraphy and hand lettering alive. It brings me enormous satisfaction when clients or learners come into class enthusing about the lettering that surrounds us (good or bad) - they are seeing through new eyes!


We'd like to thank Tina Warren for doing this interview with us - 
To view more of Tina's amazing work head over to her website!


For more info about Saunders Waterford paper:


For more info about Bockingford paper:


Monday, 7 March 2016

Interview with artist
David Bellamy






"David Bellamy specialises in painting mountain and wild coastal scenes, and is particularly fascinated by the moods of nature in the wild places. A full time artist and author, he has written seventeen books illustrated with his paintings and eight dvd’s on David’s techniques in watercolour have been produced by APV Films.Through his painting and writing he hopes to bring about a greater awareness of the threats to the natural environment, and he is particularly active in conserving the wild areas. He is currently campaigning to preserve his beloved Welsh Hills from the scourge of Wind Turbine Developments.

David Bellamy is an Ambassador for St Cuthberts Mill.


'Icefall' by David Bellamy



Interview with David Bellamy - Feb 24th 2016

Tell me about when you decided to go “pro”. When did you decide to dedicate yourself to your art. Give us an example of what that meant to you. (What pushed your artwork from amateur level to professional?)
I worked as a computer programmer and painted in my spare time, also writing articles. This became so successful I gave up the day job. Working in wild conditions in the mountains really pushed my watercolours forward

Please state which St Cuthberts Mill papers you use and why?
Saunders Waterford – it has an interesting surface texture, responds well and is reliable. Occasionally Bockingford too.


'Pike o' stickle' by David Bellamy


How does the use of these papers enhance your work?  
Waterford is a superb paper for the watercolourist and I am confident it won’t let me down (very useful in front of a large audience!). It also responds well to sponging and minor corrections. 


Is there an artist you admire, did they inspire you to be an artist yourself?
JMW Turner, of course, Bovington, Cotman, William Callow all inspired me and in my early days I enjoyed seeking out the work of John Blockley.

Do you remember the first painting you did that you were really proud of?
 Yes, one of Dimmingsdale in Staffordshire.

What memorable responses have you had to your work?
An arab once asked me to do his portrait – I did too and kept one as he had an interesting face. I was pleased with the result and so was he – He folded it up and stuffed it inside his djellaba. Several have said how my paintings and books have helped them through illnesses – at least a couple have confessed that it had stopped them from committing suicide. A troupe of monkeys took such a dislike to my sketch in the Lost City of Gedi that they threw stones and sticks at me in disgust, but most people do give favourable comments to my watercolours.

What are you working on right now?
I’m working on two more books.

What’s the one painting you’ve painted that you will always keep?
One of a deep crevice on a glacier, spanned by a fallen ice block which acts as a rather dubious bridge for a couple of climbers.

What advice would you give to yourself, the artist you were 10 years ago?
Stop playing it safe and take more artistic risks with my painting.

 

'Walrus Colony Poolpynten' by David Bellamy

We'd like to thank David Bellamy for doing this interview with us - To view more of David's amazing work head over to his website!


For more info about Saunders Waterford paper:


For more info about Bockingford paper: