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Chinese Rice Paper


Cryptos
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Hi guys and gals.

 

I've had a bit of a rummage around the forums but cannot find much information on Chinese Rice Paper (xuanzhi). Just bought a package of 38 sheets on the internet to trial it. Have heard that it is good paper for brush calligraphy and so I am hoping it may be suitable for fountain pens too. If not then I'll have to bust out the brushes!

 

 

Does anyone have any direct experience of this genre of paper?

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  • dcwaites

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The only time I have really come across proper rice paper was when it was wrapped around Callard & Bowser Nougat.

 

This article may explain more about it.

 

We will be quite interested in your findings.

According to here, it will depend on whether your paper is sized or unsized.

Edited by dcwaites

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“Them as can do has to do for them as can’t.


And someone has to speak up for them as has no voices.”


Granny Aching

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Not me - but several others who are into FP chinese calli have tried it.

 

An example: https://pencalligraphy.blogspot.sg/2016/08/blog-post_98.html

 

(Work is not mine, all rights reserved to original author)

 

~Epic

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From the land where palm trees grow,
And I want before I die
My soul's verses to bestow.
 
All those moments will be lost in time.
Like tears in rain.
Time to die.

 

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If the rice paper isn't suitable I suppose you'd have to eat your words. :D

Yesterday is history.

Tomorrow is a mystery.

Today is a gift.

That's why it's called the present

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It looks like Noihvo was using the unsized paper mentioned in the second article I linked to above.

fpn_1412827311__pg_d_104def64.gif




“Them as can do has to do for them as can’t.


And someone has to speak up for them as has no voices.”


Granny Aching

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fpn_1487506965__img_2743.jpg

 

 

Actually, I kind of like the bleed through. Does the rice paper crinkle a bit when you flex it?

 

I like thin papers that make a crinkle sort of sound when you move them a bit :blush: , and they pretty invariably bleed through with fountain pen ink. That paper tends to be expensive though. I settle for cheap paper that I can write on both sides of.

On a sacred quest for the perfect blue ink mixture!

ink stained wretch filling inkwell

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I haven't received my paper yet, but it wasn't terribly expensive. About $4 for 38 sheets of A4. A reasonable cost for an experimental foray I think.

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Actually, I kind of like the bleed through. Does the rice paper crinkle a bit when you flex it?

 

I like thin papers that make a crinkle sort of sound when you move them a bit :blush: , and they pretty invariably bleed through with fountain pen ink. That paper tends to be expensive though. I settle for cheap paper that I can write on both sides of.

 

fpn_1487953757__img_2777.jpg

"We are one."

 

– G'Kar, The Declaration of Principles

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Wow, after the discovery of xuan paper (宣纸)based on the recommendation of a pen friend I met at our "drug" supplier of choice, I had to find out more since I am currently stationed in Shanghai.

 

So here's what I found. There are basically 3 types of rice paper or xuan paper. The raw, the cooked and the semi, or the half way in between. The one that's really interesting for our purposes is the cooked xuan paper. It was originally developed for realistic and precision techniques of painting which required very controlled strokes of the brush. The treated surface does not allow the ink to spread. This is VERY different than the raw or the semi raw which is designed to primarily promote smearing, feathering the bleed through which gives a very impressionistic image.

 

What's interesting for us fountain pen community is the(熟宣)or cooked paper. It has the texture of french laid paper but because of the treated surface is is IDEAL for fountain pen writing. Very controlled, in fact giving very beautiful line variation to Chinese "hard pen" or fountain pen calligraphy.

 

Attached is my terrible attempt at 硬笔书法 or fountain pen Chinese writing. The pens I used are fine nibs from Montblanc, the FM nib from the Pilot Justus and also the fine Aurora Sigaro. The notebook is a pre-bound book bought from Taobao while in Shanghai and it's extremely cheap. The paper within already comes with these vertical red printed columns and is perfect for this type of Chinese writing. It also comes in loose pages with no lines. Some of these do have interesting finishes on it like silver sparkles or embedded gold leaf strewn across randomly on the page.

 

Here's more information about the unique properties if you want to know more. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Xuan_paper

post-80291-0-47763900-1488096112.jpg

post-80291-0-12905600-1488096762_thumb.jpg

Edited by gerigo
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gerigo's post is helpful. I use Xuan and similar paper for Sumi-e (brush painting) but not with FPs. I have different types as noted by Gerigo. The white rice paper (rough on one side, smooth on the other) is pretty tough stuff and handles ink well. You can buy it in very long rolls for about €9 (whatever in other money), and in varying widths. Thinner paper, e.g. with lines running along the paper, and not white (more beige) is very delicate and I doubt would work with FPs. I suspect that the ink flow would matter as well as nib; with brushes, the ink flows on with little resistance from the brush, while a nib interacts more with the surface of the paper.

 

This type of paper is not edible, just to be clear.

...be like the ocean...

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Noihvo

 

Unfortunately there is no other way to tell the difference between the different rice paper than 熟宣。I would assume most rice paper sold in the West is either the raw or the semi raw version because that's what most every one thinks should be the property of rice paper, which is thin delicate and easy to feather, bleed and smear.

 

Even in China, this 熟宣 is not so easy to come by and has to be specially ordered. It however does come in gigantic loose sheets that you can easily bind into a notebook.

 

Incidentally the paper is definitely delicate. However it is very easy to hand tear which gives it a beautiful deckle edge if you like to bind it together.

 

fpn_1488098234__img_2792.jpg

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Okay, the paper has arrived... and it's not really that great for fountain pens, unless you use a very fine nib and write quickly - which one would do if writing in characters with short strokes I suppose.

 

Funnily enough, the paper is surprisingly fun to use with a brush pen. Bit paradoxical, but there it is.

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gerigo's post is helpful. I use Xuan and similar paper for Sumi-e (brush painting) but not with FPs. I have different types as noted by Gerigo. The white rice paper (rough on one side, smooth on the other) is pretty tough stuff and handles ink well. You can buy it in very long rolls for about €9 (whatever in other money), and in varying widths. Thinner paper, e.g. with lines running along the paper, and not white (more beige) is very delicate and I doubt would work with FPs. I suspect that the ink flow would matter as well as nib; with brushes, the ink flows on with little resistance from the brush, while a nib interacts more with the surface of the paper.

 

This type of paper is not edible, just to be clear.

 

Is this the white rice paper you spoke of?? http://i.ebayimg.com/images/g/gZMAAOSwF1dUPVSQ/s-l1600.jpg

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Paper in the picture: no. That looks more Khadi paper, but not sure. The pics are the two papers I use. The very white on is the cheaper rice paper, smooth on one side and rough on the other. The second, with the ink, is a finer paper, with lines in the paper.post-124274-0-07633800-1488557808.jpgpost-124274-0-69567300-1488557840.jpg

...be like the ocean...

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  • 1 year later...

A question to revive an old topic: is there a cooked xuan paper that is smooth on both sides, somewhat like Tomoe River paper, that can be used to make journals where both sides are written on?

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Well, my researches (best source, inkston) tell me that shu xuan paper only comes in very light (under 40gsm) and somewhat transparent form and is only meant to be used on one side. You can get double thickness but the object of that is only to make the paper sturdier, it is still a one-side only paper, for brushes not nibs.

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