Thursday, 2 June 2016

Paper Cut Cards, by Emily Gregory. Review.

Paper Cut Cards
30 stunning handmade cards with eye-popping 3-D designs
By Emily Gregory
Search Press 2016
Paperback £12.99
ISBN 978-1-78221-386-4

Star rating: ****

This charming book is, perhaps, mis-named.  If you are looking for a papercutting book, you should probably look elsewhere. If you are looking for an ace 3-D cardmaking book with designs contributed by a talented bunch of international paper artists – you’re in the right place. This book contains projects of graded complexity – but even the simplest designs are hooky and original. This is a go-to title for getting your paper engineering skills in gear.

The feats of paper engineering magic are divided into three sections – Cuts & Folds, Tabs & Slots, and Discs & Spirals. So – you’ve got your standard pop-ups and fold-ins, plus mechanical cards. All the projects are handmade (but they could certainly be adapted for digital cutting if you are so inclined).

Star projects include Pot of Flowers (Freya Lines) – a simple papercut with a colourful backing  so both the design and the background pop; Fiesta (Freya Lines) – Mexican papercut-inspired pop-up; Bird Box (Whispering Paper) – a pop-up kraft paper shadowbox with a delightful papercut bird, Knight’s Fortress (Lynn Hatzius) – a spectacular concertina castle that is deceptively easy to make. In the second section, Carousel  (Tina Kraus) would make a splendid birthday surprise, Snail on a Leaf (Rosa Yoo) is a super dimensional pull-tab pop-up. In chapter 3, Bird in a Cage (Kyle Orman) impresses (as the name says, it is a paper cage card - pull the string to reveal the lattice cage).

These cards are all-singing, all-dancing – in many cases, you will have to rely on the description to use your imagination to create a mental gif of the card action. As you would expect, step-by-step how-tos accompany each project.

Outstanding features of the book include a picture gallers "Project Selector" and capsule bios of the contributing papercrafters. Nice.

There’s a template section at the back of the book – due to the nature of the cards, enlargement is necessary in most cases.
So – a pleasing round-up of all-occasion interactive cards.