I’ve recently completed a paper-cut for Malvern Priory restoration fund for the Bells and Belfry. It will be produced as a tea towel and sold to help bring in the remaining balance for the work on the Bells. It has been an enjoyable project and, although a little unsure about how I would get on making the paper cut, it was relatively straightforward and really fun… something a little different to what I’m usually doing at my work table.
Above, completed artwork. Finally I scanned the image of the paper cut into Photoshop, cleaned it up and now have a digital image from which to produce the tea towels
Above, the paper cut in progress
Above, the paper cut just before it is sprayed with the final colour
Above, this is the scrap backing paper used behind the sprayed paper cut to protect the surface from the paint. It’s a beautiful thing in it’s own right and if I have the time I’d like to work into this some more, re-cutting into the more dense areas of colour. I really love the way that the focus fades in and out where the image has been close or further away from the paper – wondering how this could be used in future works!
It will make a fantastic teaching project with plenty of historical and contextual examples to study.
If you’re interested in paper cuts have a look at Rob Ryan and Su Blackwell, two of my inspirations. There are also many great books available, I recommend ‘Paper Cutting’ by Laura Heyenga and Rob Ryan and published by Chronicle Books. Papercutting was a common practice in households and nurseries and is recognised historically by the paper-cuts and storytelling of Hans Christian Anderson. He would visit his partons and entertain the children of the household before dinner with stories illustrated by cutting paper scenes that depicted places and characters.