Tag Archives: terraskin paper

TerraSkin vs. Yupo

6 Nov

I’ve been using both TerraSkin and Yupo paper for several years.  These two smooth papers have been produced as shopping bags and labels, envelopes, wristbands, signs, banners, booklets and more before it came to the fine art world.

I heard that TerraSkin was a more eco-friendly alternative than Yupo synthetic paper but it’s really a toss-up.  Neither use trees to make their paper, both conserve water in their production processes and both are non-toxic.  The biggest difference is in the plastic they use to hold the ground stone, also known as Calcium Carbonate together as a sheet.  Yupo uses Polypropylene which has a high melting point, is pliable has a slight static charge (attracts dirt and dust), and costs less than Terraskin.

Terraskin uses High-density Polyethylene with a lower melting point, is less pliable, doesn’t carry a static charge (attracts less dirt and dust) but costs more due to a higher purity (100% virgin).

Here is what these two chemicals look like:

I’ve made up charts of each paper’s properties below.

charts so

My Thoughts on Synthetic papers:

Synthetic papers are easy to work with and have only slight differences that I’ve noticed.  The paper doesn’t need to be stretched.  It doesn’t shrink or expand.  They work fairly well with wet or dry mediums but the floating wet paints take a lot of practice to control.  Terraskin seems easier for layering colors but with patience and practice you can find ways to work with both.

If you are not happy with your painting, you can take it right to the sink and wash it off, although Terraskin tends to stain with certain pigments.

Tyvek is another synthetic material that painters are experimenting with but I haven’t worked with this yet.  Synthetic papers are being embraced by artists for their durability, eco-friendly qualities and their unique painting surfaces.

These papers may be better for the environment due to their tree-free and low water production processes but many of our oceans have plastics floating in them causing problems for the marine wildlife.  So I would advise painters to re-use and recycle their papers rather than tossing in the garbage.  Since I work in watercolor, it’s easy to just rinse off a painting and start again.  If you are using a more permanent medium and wish to start over, remember to use the back or maybe you would turn it into a collage or recycle where #2 plastics can be recycled as an alternative.


CREDITS:  https://www.globalplasticsheeting.com/our-blog-resource-library/bid/92169/polypropylene-is-it-different-from-polyethylene  http://www.sea.edu/plastics/frequently_asked_questions, http://www.sea.edu/plastics/current_sea_research

creeping yellow roses with logo

“Creeping Yellow Roses”, Watercolor on TerraSkin paper, 26″x34″ Katie Turner


Weeds as Inspiration

28 Sep

Goldenrod is from the aster family and native to North America.

yellow flowers, watercolor on terraskin by Katie Turner

Goldenrod, Watercolor on Terraskin paper, Katie Turner

I have a patch of weeds that I’ve purposely left in my back yard.  It’s about 5 feet by 5 feet and sits just inside my fence.  This year I watched as Goldenrod took over the section and grew vigorously.  This week it bloomed into beautiful rich yellow flowers.   The flowers are bunched together on branches of the tall plant and so heavy they are bending over.  Individual delicate flowers grouping together to make a large mass of yellow.

Goldenrod, or Solidago is a perennial that some people say causes hay fever but other sources say it’s really Ragweed that makes people sick.  Native Americans used the plant for food, tea and medicine.  Bees and butterfly’s love it and its the state flower of Kentucky, Nebraska, South Carolina, and Delaware.  I’m finding it irresistible inspiration for my watercolors.


Capturing Nature

3 Mar


deep red floral blooms on burnt umber stalks

                        “Blooms” Watercolor on Terraskin paper by Katie Turner.

I came across this quote and just had to share it here.

“Nature is so powerful, so strong.  Capturing its essence is not easy – your work becomes a dance with light and the weather.  It takes you to a place within yourself.”  ~ Annie Leibovitz

Natur-Tyme Gallery Artist Reception

24 Feb
blue flowers in loose style, watercolor painting

“Blues” Watercolor on Terraskin paper (by Katie Turner) on display at Natur-Tyme, DeWitt, New York.

For those who are local (Central New York Area) please join me tomorrow evening (Thursday, February 25th, 2016) from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. for an Artist Reception.  The painting above is one of several that will be displayed and all art will be 10% off tomorrow only.  There are many pieces priced under $100 and some matted (unframed) originals for much less.  All of my art is original (no prints).  In addition to myself, three other artists will also be displayed – Maria Rizzo (the Artist-in-Residence), Blane Berry and Annie Taylor.  Light refreshments will be served.  Hope to see you there.



3160 Erie Blvd., East

DeWitt, New York 13214

(315) 488-6300



Demonstration in Chittenango, New York

20 Apr
article about K Turner Demonstration

Page 13, “The Pen Woman” Magazine Spring 2015

This is a copy of an article that came out in the most recent Spring 2015 edition of “The Pen Woman” magazine.  “The Pen Woman” is the quarterly periodical of the National League of American Pen Women based in Washington, D.C.  The group includes all kinds of professional creative women – writers, poets, artists, musicians, dancers, etc.  More information on the group can be found at http://www.nlapw.org

Demonstrating at Chittenango School was as much a benefit to me as it was to the students.  The students have a wealth of ideas, questions, inspiration and energy.  The program which Karen Tashkovski (also a professional artist) has arranged for them is beneficial in so many ways.  Exposing them to various arts and artists early in their lives; creating future art aficionado; giving them a peek into the window of the life of an artist.   It was a terrific experience for me and I would love to help students again in the future.  Karen Tashkovski’s website is: http://www.karentash.com

Katie Turner’s website is: http://www.KTArtStudio.com


What I’m Working on Today

27 Mar
sketch on paper of tray of vegetables

Doing the sketch for a still life.

painting of veggies

Working on still life.

finished picture of veggies

First painting completed.

second picture of veggies.

Second painting completed.  Watercolor on Terraskin paper.

I found the shapes and colors of these vegetables intriguing.   First I sketched the shapes and painted a quick picture in my large size paper pad.  Next, I got out a piece of Terraskin paper, cleaned it off well (finger prints repel watercolor paint) and started painting shapes.  I did not sketch onto the Terraskin this time.  You can see the finished picture above.  I want to say “finished” but the truth is,  I keep going back to it adding things and removing things.  I’ll probably put it away for a while and then come back to it and see if there is anything I need to change.  Now I’m ready to take those delicious looking vegetables into the kitchen to create something fantastic.

Replenishing Supplies & Shows

8 Jan
soft white and yellow flowers spill across green foliage

“Day 3 Floral” a watercolor painting by Katie Turner


picture of paint palette, water, brushes

Taking stock of your art supplies for the new year.

The new year is a great time for artists to take stock of what supplies are lacking and whats left.  I see a lot of clearance sales both in store and online which make it a perfect time to re-stock art supplies.   With one recent sale, I was able to purchase an entire roll of my favorite paper at half price.  I feel like I’ve been waiting all year to stock up!

For the month of January, three of my paintings (including the one posted above) are hanging with the Central New York Art Guild Show at the Baldwinsville Public Library in Baldwinsville, New York.  The link to their site: http://www.bville.lib.ny.us/  I was thrilled they selected one of my paintings to advertise on their site.

A second show I’m in is the Associated Artists of Central New York “Outside/In” exhibition.  Karen Kozicki, a member of the Associated Artists, and a terrific photographer invited me to show as a guest.  This show opens January 10th and runs through February 28th.  The reception for this show is on January 18th from 2 – 4 p.m. at the Manlius Library where the show is hung.  That library link is: http://www.manliuslibrary.org/

A third show which began in November and will continue until sometime mid-February is a solo show at the Chittenengo Middle School.  This library space is not really accessible to the public (unless special arrangements are made) but is a show geared to the aspiring art students at CMS.