Thursday 12 January 2017

Cut and Fold Paper Textures, by Paul Jackson. Review.

Cut and Fold Paper Textures:

Techniques for Surface Design

By Paul Jackson

Laurence King Publishing, January 2017

Paperback, £16.99

ISBN 978-1-78067-861-0

Star rating: ****

Here’s an antidote to the January doldrums – a  new title from papercraft design go-to guy, Paul Jackson. The topic this time is surface texture – the author’s aim is to get you thinking in 3-D, with paper itself as a “structural material”. As the author says, “perhaps we are too quick to accept paper’s traditional role as a ground (for printing and drawing on)". So, with the goal of imparting surface interest, the author examines 12 different techniques: twisting, weaving, layering, coiling, tearing, bending, pleating, crumpling, incising and lifting, cut pleats, stippling, and translucent surfaces. Surface textures are having a well-deserved fashion moment - and Paul Jackson's book is his papery take on the phenomenon.

Each chapter introduces a technique with accompanying how-tos, then progresses to monochrome examples, two-colour examples, then finally all-singing, all-dancing full-colour examples. Lots of accompanying inspirational photos – not all of papercraft projects (but all of the projects would have initially been inspired by the featured papercraft technique).This ramping-it-up format works a treat.

The chapter on twisting looks in on the little-used technique of fashioning things out of coiled paper twine. And the chapter on Coiling is a celebration of quilling – a papercraft that has recently been shaking off its fusty image (not that we didn’t already love it).The chapters on tearing and folding explain how to work with the grain of the paper. The chapter on Incising and Lifting showcases patterning achieved by papercutting – but this is cut-and-pierced paperwork, not papercutting with fully-evacuated holes. A magical element can be added to cut-and-pierced designs through the addition of backlight – or backing paper. The chapter on Stippling is about creating pointillist effects by needle-piercing or paper indentation. The chapter on Translucent Surfaces is about creating layered stained-glass-like effects.These designs are reverse-engineered - literally, layered and lit from behind. So - endless variety to highlight the chameleon-like transformative power of paper. 

Dip into this book if you are looking to try a new papercraft technique, or if you wish to add excitement to a project in progress. It is an excellent resource. All of the techniques can be achieved by the casual crafter without difficulty. 

Cut and Fold Paper Textures is the most recent addition to an indispensable range of Paul Jackson papercraft design titles for Laurence King Publishing. If you have more than a passing interest in papercraft techniques, then you should assemble this library. They are my constant references – a pleasure each time I consult them. You can learn about all aspects of paper manipulation – pleating, folding, one-sheet pop-ups, how to design a box (this can get pretty sophisticated). A veritable Disneyland of paper manipulation techniques!
Paul Jackson papercraft library.

Note: I was supplied with a review copy of this title.

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