Tuesday, 5 January 2016

The Art of Papercutting, by Jessica Palmer. Review.

The Art of Papercutting
By Jessica Palmer
Search Press 2015
Paperback, £14.99 UK,$21.95 US
ISBN 978 1 78221 066 5

Star rating: ****

It’s January – time to take up a craft, or fine-tune your skills.  Jessica Palmer’s The Art of Papercutting is an excellent mix of the practical and the inspirational, which delivers on its inviting cover line, “Learn how to see the world with a papercutter’s eyes.” 

Jessica Palmer is a successful artist who illustrates in paper. Papercutting is her medium, and her book generously shares her technical and inspirational secrets. This is not a project book – although there are 12 templates back-of-book. It is a how-to book – thinking in positive/negative, the importance of pattern, connecting links, sourcing designs, plus many invaluable tips (for example: if cutting text, a photocopy is easier to cut than an actual book page).

The book is a gallery of inspiration, featuring the fantastic, Beardsley-like intricate arabesque designs of the author. The author's wearable paperart collars are very special indeed.

Even if you are into digital papercrafting, there is much to be gained from this book. Just as abstract artists can do representational drawing, learning about papercutting by hand can up your digital design skills. Learning about how to generate papercut designs is a shared skill.