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Sunday, 21 December 2014

Dragonfly papercut

I started working on papercuts in 2009 on a bit of a whim. A good friend of mine had heard me talking about wanting to quilt and bought me a rotary cutter and self healing mat. 

Five years on I am still thinking about quilting and have never got round to it but having the mat, paper and some time to kill started me on my papercutting journey. 

I always have plans for my next piece but recently I have been doing a lot of commissions, which is great, and always takes me in directions I wouldn't necessarily go. 

My friend Gareth wanted me to do a piece for his friends birthday. It was a pretty flexible brief, she likes dragonflies and Tenby and her name begins with the letter J. I have always fancied trying dragonflies but had never got round to it so this was great.

First, I did a preliminary sketch and selected the palette of colours. 

The three shades of green for the hills were taken from the colours in from the coastline at Tenby. These are the first pieces layers I fix in place. 

Next was the J - letters are tricky and any you can really tell if they are a bit wonky so I always print them off to use a template for cutting

For the grasses, and most things I cut in black, I sketched directly onto the paper with a white pen. The only tricky bit with this approach is you have to do it in reverse as the pen-side will be stuck down.

For the dragonflies I cut the initial shape out, 

 Then add the detail to on the reverse..

Cut away the detail in the wings,

and finally, assemble the final piece. I'm quite happy with it. The clouds were a last minute addition, they really helped lift it in terms of colour. 

It's a gloomy winter day here and the pictures have suffered as a result - but hopefully you get the general idea. 

More to come!

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