Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Step Nine: Paper Cutting, The Sequel! :-)

Dearest Sylwi,

This week, I was inspired again by more wonderful paper cutting artists. It's hard not to be inspired when you have artists like Julie from Famille Summerbelle. I just about fainted when I saw her awesome Paris paper cut map. She sells beautiful prints of it in her shop, but oh, if I could only own the original paper cut of this map! [sigh!] :-)

Not only is she extremely talented, but her blog is brimming over with beautiful inspiration and eye candy - well worth a browse! 

She also has posted a wonderful video, if you'd like to see her cutting her beautiful New York paper map

Okay, enough drooling over Julie. Let's just say she inspires me! ha ha! :-)

So, I initially had big plans to create a fancy card, but as I got into this week's project, I realised I'd chosen quite a complicated subject - a peacock! :-) I don't even know why I chose it, but I wanted a bit of a challenge this week. Maybe it was too big a challenge, as I was actually afraid to sit down and begin today!

I had no idea how to draw a peacock and no idea if I could then cut it out of paper. So, I had to switch off the voices in my head that were telling me it was too hard and just stumble on through! :-)

I looked up some pictures of peacocks for inspiration and then I was ready to begin. After I'd sketched it roughly, I was fairly surprised that my bird looked like a peacock. I've not really drawn anything since school and even then, my art teacher used to laugh! ;-) 

Even once I had drawn the bird, I was sitting there staring at it for a few minutes, wondering if I had possibly chosen the most difficult subject on earth to cut from paper! 

Finally, after a cup of tea, I summoned my courage and began to cut. As I was cutting, I really wished I'd spent more time on drawing the design. I realised I hadn't drawn the tail feathers very thoroughly and there were lots missing. :-/ Too late though. I'd already started and it was getting wayyyy too late to change my project for today. :-)

Once I'd completed the tail, I began to feel happier thinking I'd done the hardest part...

Unfortunately, it wasn't the hardest part! :-) The body was. I'd like to spend more time working on a technique for feathers. 

Anyway, as a first attempt, I was happy. Although, my cutting hand is a bit stiff and my forefinger has gone completely numb!

I'm captivated by the shadows that paper cuts throw. They really are so striking.

Next time - if there is a next time :-) - I'd like to spend more effort on the design before I begin cutting. It would be fun to create one within a frame, maybe one that tells a story, or mixed with text.

One artist who uses text in her work is Julene Harrison. Her paper cuts are simply beautiful. I just love her San Francisco, 'This must be the place' cut. Her work would make such a great personal gift.

On a smaller budget, if you're looking for a personalised paper cut card, check out The Storey Shop on Etsy! So much fun and Helen, who owns it, is the sweetest. She came up with a brilliant design for a Valentine's card for my husband and her customer service is wonderful! 

My husband is always complaining about how much time I spend on my computer... so this seemed like the perfect card for me to give to him! ;-)

Anyway, enough paper cut madness for one week! Can't wait to see what you come up with! More stamping? Or something completely different?! It's very exciting not knowing! :-)

Lots of love

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