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Over the course of the symposium, a variety of workshops and round table discussions will be offered. 
These will focus on practical and technical skills as well as professional development.

Working with Paraloid B-72

Description: Outstanding aging properties and re-solubility make Paraloid B-72 the top choice for many fossil preparation tasks, but technique, familiarity, skill and creativity are also important.  This hands-on workshop will provide an opportunity to share tips and practice many different techniques for applying and manipulating Paraloid B-72, using broken ceramic tiles and glass beads.  Each participant will have their own kit of materials for consolidating, joining and filling, labeling each repair with the method used and mounting their handiwork in an archival display.

Workshop participants will experience the effects of different viscosities, reactivation with solvent and with a hair drier, use of a backing or facing fabric, filling gaps, injection, manipulating small fragments, effect of substrate porosity, effect of solvent retention in the adhesive, bonding of paper labels and ethafoam.  Additionally, they will practice and learn techniques for easy mixing, loading tubes, cleaning jars without solvent and preventing stuck lids.

Instructions, recipes, supplier lists and references will be distributed in hard copy and digital form (participants should bring a flash drive). Participants will take home their display and their kit, including a loaded tube and brush bottle, syringe, dropper bottle with needle tip, some Paraloid B-72 ready to mix, and samples of backing, facing and bulking materials.

This workshop will be offered on Friday and Saturday from 1:30-5:00

Fee for workshop: $35.00 including kit

Instructor: Amy Davidson, Senior Principal Preparator
Division of Paleontology, American Museum of Natural History

Registration: davidson@amnh.org

Maximum number of participants: 15 per workshop

From Preparation to Illustration

The aim of the workshop is to translate the way that fossils appear through a preparator’s stereo microscope to the way that they appear to an illustrator, and ultimately how they appear in print to the reader. This perspective along with a good working dialogue between preparators and illustrators can make figures clearer and more visually appealing.

The workshop will be mostly hands-on drawing with instruction. There will be a short presentation to start off, and time for questions, and discussion. Drawing equipment and fossil casts to draw will be provided.

This discussion will take place on Friday from 1:30-3:30

Fee for workshop: Included with registration

Jude Swales, Scientific Illustrator
Burke Museum

Registration: fossprep@uw.edu

Maximum number of participants: 12

Defining the Preparator

In addition to workshops a roundtable discussion will be facilitated by Mathew Brown, Chief Preparator, University of Texas. The conversation will cover topics ranging from competencies to professionalism as well as outline essential skills required for expert preparation.

This roundtable will take place on Thursday from 1:30-3:30

Registration is not required


Digitally Scan and Print Your Fossil Cradle

Minimal handling of your fossil will reduce risk of damage. This method canaccommodate nearly any size fossil. Use your own digital camera.








Free software uses images from your digital camera to "Stitch" together a 3D surface of your fossil. Use Google Sketch-up (also free) customize your scan to best support and cradle your fossil.



Send the edited file to the 2BOT ModelMaker to have the fossil cradle created in minutes! Use your own Ethafoam!





This workshop will be offered on Friday and Saturday from 1:30-5:30

Fee for Workshop: Included with registration.
Fossil and Ethafoam will be provided by the Burke Museum. Participants are encouraged to bring their own digital cameras and laptops.

Instructor: 2Bot physical Modeling Technologies

Maximum number of participants: 12 per workshop

To reserve a space please email fossprep@uw.edu