Clean Dirt

It is true that cutting and ripping papers makes a big mess. But it's a clean mess, not a dirty mess.

I always begin to work using a waste basket, but after some time even the waste basket can disappear under the rubble. It's true: the whole desk, then the floor near my desk, soon the whole floor in the whole studio becomes my waste basket. What can I do? I do not stop cutting just to pick up scraps of paper.

The studio floor then looks a lot like my unraked yard in the height of autumn, and the crunch of papers underfoot sounds a lot like the crunch of autumn leaves. But when I finish a page I do sweep up the scraps.

The scraps, however, are hardly ever left in great big green garbage bags in front of the house on trash pick-up days. I have to confess that the unused pieces usually find their ways, arranged by color, into one of the 14 big baskets in my paper supply room.

How can I throw out a perfectly good piece of beautiful bright blue rice paper even if it is only one inch by one inch big and bent at the corner when it could make perfectly good eyeballs?