Cockerell and Mystique
- I had the privilege of meeting Mr. Cockrell in 1984 and he graciously gave me a tour of his marbling studio and bindery (I was still a beginning marbler at that time, but have been marbling ever since). I remember asking him where he got all his wonderful marbling tools and he replied "my dear, one makes one's own." Keep in mind, back in 1984, there were very few marblers (at least here in the U.S.) and no "how-to" books or any sources of equipment. I did, indeed, make all of my own marbling combs and rakes. I purchased a set of Cockrell's marbling inks and kept the receipt, which he signed. When I had called to ask to visit I thought I'd just be at his studio, not realizing it was also his home. When I apologized for coming to his home, he replied "my dear, craftsmen always live above their studio." It was a beautiful home as well as studio.
Because there were no "how-to" books or instructions available 30 years ago (when I first started marbling) I was always intrigued by the "French Boquet" pattern and couldn't figure out how it could possibly be made. Imagine my delightful surprise when I was shown the marbling room and the assistant was actually making that pattern! "Oh, so that is how it is done" and immediately the wonder and magic of that pattern was gone, it really wasn't that complicated, as long as you had a double rake/comb to make the pattern. The other revolation was the applying each set of inks all at once with a grid of nails (as shown in the video mentioned in an earlier posting). That explains the uniformity I can't get by dropping my colors individually (either by broom whisks or pipettes), but I have my methods and they work for me. The awe of the mystery is still there when someone sees marbling for the first time and you explain the process of "floating colors on water, manipulating them, then putting the paper down to pick up the pattern."
I'm sorry Ink & Gall is no longer being published, as it was a wonderful source of sharing mabling techniques and "secrets" with fellow marblers.
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