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Hanna-Mae Illustration

Illustrator & eco clothing designer

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paper cutting

First review of the year: Creative Paper Cutting

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Full title: Creative Paper Cutting; fifteen paper sculptures to inspire and delight

Author: Cheong-ah Hwang

ISBN: 978 1 86108 9205

Publisher: GMC Publications Ltd

Price: RRP £14.99 (from £10.31 via Amazon)

About: 15 paper cutting projects aimed mainly at beginners and young people, with information on tools/materials.

Here’s what I loved:

♦ The book encourages ‘out of the box’ thinking, promoting the creation of: ‘intricate artworks that can adorn walls, be sent as greetings cards or encased in quirky containers, such as empty pocket watches, glass pendants or clocks’ (inner cover description)

♦ Cheong-ah promotes the use of recycled materials, mentioning it on several occasions, including in the interesting introduction, in which you can also detect her passion for her art.

♦ Unlike some art/craft books she doesn’t assume you that have prior knowledge of materials, with a good section of the book dedicated to explaining essentials such as paper weight and techniques, which brings me to my next point…

♦ Whilst some craft books jump straight in to the projects, Hwang takes you step-by-step through the processes before you even pick up your tools (another reason why I feel this book is more suited to young people and absolute beginners)

♦ The book is aesthetically pleasing. It’s something I mention often when reviewing, but it’s so important to draw the reader in and keep that interest. There’s an abundance of images, a huge colour element, and even a quirky font.

♦ The projects offer variety – from your everyday greetings card, to a plaque, and even an upcycled pocket watch project!

♦ There are also useful (and interesting) extras at the end of the book, such as websites to visit, book recommendations, and suppliers.

What I didn’t love so much…

◊ Some of the designs look very simplistic and child-like (such as ‘The Owl and the Pussycat’ and ‘Kraken and Submarine’) so if you’re already a paper cutting enthusiast this book probably isn’t for you. That being said, this would be a great book for absolute beginners to learn the ropes, and could be the gateway to some advanced designs. I imagine some of these projects working well in schools or with youngsters, particularly the ‘Coat of Arms’ project.

Conclusion:

Useful for some – beginners and those wanting to gain confidence in paper cutting, as well as offering some project ideas for young people. A light-hearted way to spend a rainy afternoon, rather than a serious reference for practising artists.

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Good news! I’ve just added some unique, ready-framed paper art of my own to my online shop. Click the picture to find out more…

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The right kind of paper cut!

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As the festive season fast approaches I’ve found myself in a whirlwind of art and craft in my aim to make people’s Christmas just that bit more personal by adding a handmade element to everyone’s gifts. When I’ve allowed myself to be pulled away for a much-needed break from my work space, I’ve been spending my time attending and browsing craft fairs, and have been blown away by the amount of talented individuals out there.

Last Saturday I had a stall at a Christmas fair where I tested out for the first time how my paper cut pieces would go down. I was pleasantly surprised at the lovely comments and interest and will be adding some framed paper cuts to my Folksy shop in the near future, so be sure to keep checking! (https://folksy.com/shops/hmillustration)

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It was whilst browsing at BelleVue Park’s craft fair a few days later that I came across a fellow artist/crafter whose cuts I fell in love with. From small box-framed designs, to larger intricate ones, the detail and whimsical work of Gemma, owner of Papur Pinc, is well worth checking out!

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‘Monthly tutorial’ will be starting again in January, with creative tips and ideas to keep you busy! In the mean-time, why not re-visit this year’s ideas? Simply click whichever one takes your fancy to be transported!:

Monthly Tutorial: Neatening a seam by hand

Accurate drawing for beginners

Treetorial: How to paint trees using oil paint

Painting clouds with oil paints

 

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