Research was undertaken to see how negative space could be used and had to decide what would be relevant to the work that I was studying. Whilst looking I found a number of interesting art that demonstrates how clever this can be. Looking at the illustration below was useful as it shows that a simple idea can translate a whole story.By omitting some elements, the whole story is told in one picture. It is a good example of how negative space can be used to illustrate how less is more.        
25/7/16 minimalistic posters from children’s books

Produced for the Colsulbio book exchange (Loew-ssp3) this illustration at first gives the impression of what I know to be snow white, with her trademark black hair, and red lips. But on close inspection the face of Snow White is silhouetted by Sherlock Holmes, which I think is extremely clever and well thought out. I am not quite sure what the connection is, apart from the fact they are fictional characters both on the side of good. And is quite puzzling!

Negative shape hadn’t been given much thought about before, but found it to be quite diverse.


ray macro
Handmade lamps are made by Ray Macro and uses light to create an illusion through the pattern of trees. It reminds me of the work of Rennie McIntosh whose work is organic and similar in design in my opinion. The vases are made of ceramic which in itself is not unusual, but the interesting thing is a gradual rise of the light which emulates the sunrise. This is achieved by light that is refracted and reflected to achieve the required effect. However there is a constant conflict whether the light and object made will work. Which is interesting as I doubt my own abilities whether something will work or not.

Yuri Facuda

As a ceramic artist, Yuri Fukuda uses energy and life as her inspiration. I haven’t been able to find a lot about her, but her work is widely known.

I feel it is very organic in design and feels that is where my direction needs to go, as I prefer to work in an intuitive way. Letting the piece as its made develop.


Andrea Russo an Italian paper artist that creates folded paper that emulates porcelain. He uses the traditional technique of Origami and seeks to create organic sculptures inspired by Hokusai. One such piece was a reflection of the great wave of Kanagawa.

This piece of folded art shows how an ordinary piece of paper can be transformed into a sculpture. Out of all of the many pieces of art, this is one that I really like. Although the edges are pointed, the whole feel of it looks softer and I think this is because of the curved nature of the design. Having looked at Origami and attempted some of the designs, I realize the complexity of making some of them. I like the hands-on experience and felt quite peaceful when constructing a piece. I think this is because you have to be mindful of creasing in the right place. This is to be explored further.

Regina is a ceramic artist that looks for connections between the elements of nature and the interplay with organic clay. Constantly drawing from nature she uses the clay to form ceramics that have seem to move. I like the way she hand makes the artwork, to create a piece that is full of texture. This resonates with some of the work I have already made. My work evolves naturally, coming straight from my head. However, since I have done the exercises, realise by doing a prototype before any work is done, prevents any possible product errors.

I have been unable to find a piece of art due to copyright.

Dan Steinhilber is inspired by 3-dimensional artwork. He believes that the viewer should experience  the feeling of moving around or through the object. He likes to utilise byproducts such as shipping pallets or shopping bag,s amongst other things. His thinking is that he likes the relationship between the objects as vessels to convey commodities and tries to disconnect culture and nature. However, he believes that each item has its own nature, in the way it feels and moves. Much of the materials he uses are mundane, such as bin bags or plastic bottles. Personally, it’s not something I would use myself, as I don’t see the beauty in this sort of art, even if I appreciate the aesthetics behind it.


I find the work of Peter Calleson very intriguing. As a paper artist, his work is exquisite and would imagine it very time intensive. And above all attention to detail would be paramount.

He creates his artwork using A4 white paper with the stark paper gives it a clinical feel. Being thin the paper shows fragility in its very design, but the artwork too has little holding it together.

The 2-dimensional paper that is cut out is fragile and the thing that I notice is that the image is almost escaping from the paper, giving a sense of partial freedom. But still being attached causes confusion.

In this picture, the ballerina gives a hint of sadness. She escapes from the paper, only to be held in suspension unable to dance away. The shadow created ebbs away and it appears that she looks at herself like in a mirror captured forever. I wondered how this could be translated into  fabric, and looked at the possibility of leather or a stiffened fabric.

Much of his work using negative space and 2d images are created by the cuts leaving empty space. His inspiration comes from fairy tales and landscapes that seem unreal but are extremely complex. and seems to be a familiar theme when researching artists, as I seem drawn to these artists and their way of thinking.

There is a sadness about his work, where for example the humming bird ‘escapes’ from the paper to be caught by the very design.There is something unsettling about the designs, perhaps black and white thinking. And I think it is almost bordering on obsession.  He has said ‘art is but a shadow of divine perfection’.

However, despite that rationale, I think his work is beautiful.
Personally, his work makes me think about life and how we are all trapped in a mundane humdrum life and the possibility of escape.

Olafur Eliasson is a Danish-Icelandic artist who uses science and art and our relationship with time and space.

He uses dialogical learning in his work. That is to say learning through dialogue. He tends to work with a variety of people, such as archivists, mathematicians and others of notable fields and considers that this is an important part of his work. There are a number of points that he employs when making a piece. He uses ethical and aesthetic judgement before value judgement. Ethical judgement is where something is morally right or wrong. Each individual has these abilities and there are a lot of factors, upbringing, religion, reasons and most importantly personal beliefs. This can vary across the world, where something could be accepted or totally rejected. For example, fur coats were regarded as an essential item for all women, today it is morally wrong to wear an animal’s fur.

Aesthetics deals with critical reflection, whether the natural world, art or tradition. It is concerned with if something is ugly or beautiful, for example. But it isn’t just that, that there are also emotions involved. Going back to the fur coat, most people would be angered by this.

Another example is Deborah Robertis arrested for nude stunt in Paris. Having exposed herself in front of Manet’s Olympia. The painting is of a prostitute and Robertis was re-enacting the pose. Her performance was to show support for the artists. This caused public uproar, and were people’s knee jerk reaction to today’s morality. I think I have grasped this concept, but not totally and hope I have explained it well.


Your House is a sculptured volume which is laser cut creating negative spaces on each page. It shows the spatial area throughout his own house in Copenhagen. He uses the negative space as an illusion of virtually being in the house, moving from room to room. We all know what a window or door is, so he draws on what we know and what we perceive it to be. And in that fact, he draws you into a world where your imagination takes over. A very clever concept, almost surreal.

There is a narrative throughout the book, some with historical content. But has a purist ‘feel’ and this is due in part to the white paper. Although the focus is the architecture of the house, it’s just an illusion of how a house would feel visually not actuality. It feels quite sterile, but despite this is interesting.

Jum nykao

This artist creates clothing out of paper, initially this was made out of ordinary paper, which did not stand up to the rigors of the catwalk. With that in mind changed to vegetable paper for more durability.

Having a background in electronics, his transition to clothing was that he wanted to use this to create an interface. He thought of the space that occurs between our clothes and our skin.

He was influenced by the fashion of Brazil, where much of the designs are multi-faceted. He used polygonal shapes in his work, distorting pictures into cubes.
He employed various techniques when cutting paper, such as laser cuts, manual or relief carvings. He also used Origami in his work.

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As people want to change things all the time and have the best of everything, this materialization was something that Jum is passionate, that the material doesn’t matter and that people should re-evaluate their values and not place to much on materialism. This is something that people today do all the time, for example when your neighbour has a new car, many people have to have a newer car or a house. In other words, the keeping up with the Jones phrase is most peoples knee jerk reaction. Having learnt from my grandmother made do and mend (which stemmed out of the war and rationing), I have a different ethos to many people and take joy in scouring car boots for the hidden gem that would enhance my home. I think this is why I find old material and odd trinkets as a treasure trove of inspiration.

When experimenting with holes, I thought about how holes are created in fabric, which led me to my research on Lace. This is a crossover with holes and cuts. There are many artists that use cut work in their work. Although this is not a new idea, cut work throughout history has been used extensively.

Punto Tagliato was popular during the Renaissance.  Although a revival of this is translated into many designs today. It has extensive open cut work, but originally the fabric had small eyelets worked into them.


This is where a section of material is cut away and reinforced with stitch, similar to cut work, but only the warp and weft are taken out. Traditional methods are still used, but with the onset of machinery, mass production is done by modern technology. Usually, handcrafted lace is made as a cottage industry and remember seeing this up in the mountains in Cyprus. It reminds me of tatting, used extensively on handkerchiefs. Although not so much in fashion now with the onset of paper tissues.

Italian reticella needle lace 15th century

Threads were drawn from the fabric primarily linen making a grid. This was then buttonhole stitched. Later on in history, a threaded grid was made. Basic shapes such as circles and squares were used as a basic for the lacework.


Reticella collars were worn a lot in the 1600s. This picture shows the Queen of Bohemia, Princess Elizabeth Stuart. The design on the lace depicts the Royal coat of arms.

Here again, the Reticella lace is used. The lace is stiffened with starch otherwise, it would not hold its shape. This is something to consider when sculpting a fabric, as many delicate fabrics would not retain the shape. The fabric frames the face highlighting the importance of the design. It adds quite a contrast to the heavily embroidered dress. The collars are also made of Reticella lace and were possibly a hindrance, due to the stiffness of the lace and the way it doesn’t sit flat.
However, in my opinion. it is quite beautiful and can imagine how intense the work would have been when embroidering.


Hardanger embroidery uses a white even woven background with white thread which is counted and pulled thread work. This evolved into Italian Reticella. During the 17th century was popular in Norway and was used extensively on traditional dress. The fabric was obtained from flax and the material has a wider weave making the holes distinctive.  Certain stitches are popular and as such widely known because of this. Stars, crescents and other simplistic designs are used. Plus a number of decorative stitches.  Four threads are picked up and wound over and over until covered. This makes the open weave wider. Much of the work done employs geometric shapes, but their placement is very important to the intricate designs made.


This technique was called lace in the air and similar shapes to Reticella were used. However, the difference being was the needle lace had a backing of parchment for stability and was heavily braided or threaded. This originated from Italy.  Again, this would have been time-consuming. If I were to make a reproduction (in the loose sense of the word) would be to draw the lacework, or rather the main lines and make cuts similar to the snowflakes done as children. It would be interesting to do in paper but not sure if I would like to do in fabric.


boys dress

Although this was popularised by the English in the 19th century, it was French in origin. The patterning on it is either rounded or oval eyelets or holes. Holes were created in the weave of the fabric and bound in the same way as buttonhole stitch, with many drawing on nature using flowers and leaves as inspiration. However, later in history satin stitch was used to create small patterns.


Richelieu embroidery was similar to Broderie embroidery but instead of holes, thin bars were created by drawing threads and over sewing the remaining threads until they were completely over sewn. This was called Caseado.

Another name for this embroidery is Roman work, Strasbourg or Venetian embroidery. These are all very similar in design and difficult to distinguish between them.

In the picture there is a cross in the middle, which gives a religious overtone to the embroidery. There is a softness with the leaves and flowers with the design being central and is ideally placed. I do like the technique and have never tried this, but something that I would like to try.


Madeira lace is the home of the finest embroidery in the world. This is all handmade, which makes it a cottage industry growing from traditional roots. It was very popular in England in the Victorian times. Predominantly used to decorate household fabrics. Materials they use today are silk cotton organdie and linen.

Linen is the one I mostly associate the majority of household embroidery, but that is possible a misconception. A number of stitches are employed which include French, lace and rope stitch. This industry is extremely important to the country’s economy employing thousands of embroiderers thus keeping the tradition alive.

This is derived from Venetian lace and there are striking similarities.  Buttonhole stitch is used in high relief. Buttonholes bars are used to connect the stitch work with tatted picots. I appreciate the work that went into the picots as my great aunt tried to show me, but the tiny, tiny knots were not the easiest thing to manipulate. If you did one knot wrong, it was extremely difficult to undo. The linen that was worked upon used filling stitches.

The difference between this and some of the other types of lace is that the base fabric is net and muslin and then the embroidery is stitched on. The outline is heavily stitched through both materials and the net is cut away. Then threads are linked together with loops. These are called twirls. There are also holes that are embroidered with buttonhole stitch and are called pops. This was introduced in Ireland by Mrs Grey Porter who taught local women to sew Carrickmacross to supplement their income, when the Potato famine occurred. This cottage industry is typical of traditional skills all around the world, where poor people sometimes exploited produced traditional goods for tourists.

The vast array of lace is not exhaustive, with many others techniques to explore. But having researched have realized the importance of space and its relation to the material shape and how placement can affect how something is viewed.

Cut work has been a feature throughout history and is still being used by designers today.

An exhibition in Melbourne by J’Aton Couture shows slashing and cut work that is very intricately cut involving geometric shapes.
A few examples of this are:-

The models in this picture are wearing lace clothing. The lace both shows geometric shapes which is a common theme in lacework. But instead of the heavy design of lacework of the past, has been replaced with  a more delicate fabric. This is possibly due to modern technology where fabrics are laser cut and the availability of sheer fabrics to choose from.

All of these models are wearing clothes that have been slashed. I particularly like the bottom right dress with the way the slash goes across the body balancing the design, especially with the leg slash on the right.

The embossing exercises although not very inspiring, led me to look at the process of creating embossed work which was a little more exciting.

Textile embossing on paper is something I had heard of however I hadn’t considered fabric embossing. The fabric is laid flat and heat is applied under high pressure and temperature. This allows the surface to be raised giving a 3-dimensional feel and look to the fabric. The design however is dependent on the type of fabric used. Also the design can have an impact on how it imprints on the surface.

Generally the technique embossing using non-woven materials.  This could include tissue papers napkins or face wipes which have fibres that are entangled not woven. Being flat they lend themselves to this technique well.

There are various types of embossing:

Blind embossing
is where the surface usually paper is raised and does not include any inking of the area.

Leather embossing is done by using a tool to make an impression on the fabric. The leather is dampened first and then a stamp is imprinted into it. This is then left to dry. It retains the image unless it becomes wet. Leather can also be moulded over a shape and when dried again the impression is left. Lazers are also used to cut shapes out of the leather. Another way of embossing use Pyrography, where a hot needle or soldering iron etches the image directly onto the leather.

Repousse and chasing hand hammering metal sheet
As the heading suggests hand hammering metal punches the design into the metal called chasing.  The metal is hammered to the same depth. The process of hammering shows in the metalwork not seen in other handmade techniques of this kind.

Registered Embossing
This is where there is a printed raised or depressed image. A 3D image with raised texture can be made through a flat die, whereas a round die creates a curved image in the paper and curves out from the surface. Sloped edges and a deeper impression is created by bevelled embossing. Dimensional elements are created through several layers will sluptured dies.

Single level emboss
It is an image is raised singularly as opposed to the multi level where the embossed image have varying depths

Sculptured emboss – this can be a useful technique when altering a photograph. Whereby 3D embossing can be achieved by hand crafting.

Combo emboss
This is a combination of embossed image and foiling. The embossed image is imprinted with an overlay of foil. A brass die is used for this and precision is needed to align the embossed area and cut to clear the excess foil.

Dark coloured papers are heated and the pressure creates a shiny surface. Lighter colours can be burnt which create colour changes.

This produces a depressed rather than raised embossing.

Tint Emboss
earl or pastel foil is used in the same way other embossing images are created. This is very fashionable at the moment and is extensively used in card making.



Matthew Shlian is a paper engineer. Having a background in engineering he uses kinetic energy to to create paper sculptures. Science and art is once again integrated. For example


A jumping frog made from paper shows potential energy and kinetic energy. The objects speed, determines how much kinetic energy is produced. Not quite sure how useful that is, but an interesting idea. Possibly useful in an installation where movement is the emphasis rather than the object.


The artwork he produces is complex geometric shapes but is full of movement and therefore energy. Some of his artwork has the appearance of plaster work such as the example above. Having attempted pleating, I realize how complicated it actually is. I struggled to visual the end design and therefore did not achieve the best results. This remind me a little of the spiral formed on a cabbage. Although not a spiral it appears to imitate it, in my opinion.


This artist uses a incense stick to create artwork in the style of Pointillism. The images created are made by burning the image onto a canvas or rice paper. In Korean culture it is believed that there should be a balance between dark and light and this is called ‘Yin’ and ‘Yang.’

where it is believed that throughout life there should be balance between dark and light.
I like this technique and something I have tried within some of my sample. However the paper used was too thick and didn’t act the way in which I thought it would. It did not produce neat holes, which seemed to taper, and was difficult to handle. However, this does not put me off trying in future.


He mainly creates scenes of from nature, such as trees, clouds, mountains, forests and branches using contrasting positive and empty space. His inspiration draws from a Utopian world and harmony that ensues. The word Korean word for Utopia is Yi Sang Kwang, but interestingly enough Kwang is the name of incense. So the tool used becomes one with the painting.

He also uses the Yin and Yang methodology, where there are duality principles. That means that opposite not only compliments, but draw strength from. The artists work is almost surreal, as is shown in the image above, drawing you upwards into the almost cloud like tree. Overall his work has a calming effect on me.

This artist draws on the Buddhist religion, creating sculpture with negative space. Because of the nature of the visual aspect of it, I was captivated by the beauty of the craftsmanship and drawn into a state of mindfulness.

The statue draws from the Buddhist praying position which informs me of the religious aspect. The centre, I would think represents the light which comes from Buddhists belief that we all possess enlightenment. This is passed down through the centuries from traditional values where by practicing the body can be cleansed of the 3 fires. These are passion, aversion and ignorance. As a piece of art I can see the relevance of the design, as it seems peaceful and I really like it.

Whilst this first sculpture makes me mindful, the one below makes me feel a little uncomfortable.
But it is compelling to look at. I am really not sure why I don’t like it, but I think this could be because  the head seems sharp and split and does not conform to the way we look. After studying Shakras, I learnt that the white light that is channeled in our bodies and goes through various colour changes:

red base relationship
orange creativity and feelings
yellow intellect
Green balance, serenity and tranquility
Blue communication
Indigo consciousness
Violet spirituality

And through all of these run the white light, which is the energy transmitted through the body. So I feel this is what the artist is trying to convey. Having never really understood what Buddhism is, I have a bit more understanding of the gentle nature of the religion.


Annie Voight is an artist who uses the written word, meticulously cutting out the words. The work is extremely delicate and it structure depends on the interlinking of the lettering. Her work relies on the text written, how it is made and the emotion when writing.

In the days of modern technology writing is not as widespread as it once was, leading to the children of today having more cases of poor penmanship in schools. With the onset of computers, most writing is done on the keyboard. I remember calligraphy being taught to my daughter, 20 years ago and how beautiful the written word could be.

Annie’s work draws on traditional writing with stunning work which has carefully thought out wording. I admire the patience she must have to create this work, which is hand crafted and painstaking to do. This is something I might try if I have the patience!
I like handwriting and have thought about lettering in my work, but unsure of how to attempt it. Should it be appliqued on, or should it be printed? These are some of the questions I ask myself. During this assignment I seem to be questioning what I want to achieve, and what techniques most appeal to me? The conclusion I have come to is to do what makes me happy, as in the long run, it will make me more motivated and will show in the work that I create.




A greenhouse for life 2014

Julie Friedman uses flat cut work using Tyvek and a knife. All the pieces that she creates are silhouettes and its strength is in the material she uses.The work that she does draws people into a fantasy world, where every little detail has a story to tell. It is one of the most beautiful pieces of art that I have seen and appreciate the work that has gone into creating it.


Jamie Poole draws from the natural world for his inspiration when creating the artwork he does. He uses poems that are deconstructed to create his masterpieces. The paintings use collage techniques but he describes it as mosaics of poetry.


This particular picture of a war horse was inspired by the first world war and the conflicts that arose. He wanted to show the horror created by war. He drew inspiration by a solder called Wilfred Owen
Spring Offensive

Spring Offensive

Halted against the shade of a last hill,
They fed, and, lying easy, were at ease
And, finding comfortable chests and knees
Carelessly slept.
But many there stood still
To face the stark, blank sky beyond the ridge,
Knowing their feet had come to the end of the world.
Marvelling they stood, and watched the long grass swirled
By the May breeze, murmurous with wasp and midge,
For though the summer oozed into their veins
Like the injected drug for their bones’ pains,
Sharp on their souls hung the imminent line of grass,
Fearfully flashed the sky’s mysterious glass.
Hour after hour they ponder the warm field—
And the far valley behind, where the buttercups
Had blessed with gold their slow boots coming up,
Where even the little brambles would not yield,
But clutched and clung to them like sorrowing hands;
They breathe like trees unstirred.
Till like a cold gust thrilled the little word
At which each body and its soul begird
And tighten them for battle. No alarms
Of bugles, no high flags, no clamorous haste—
Only a lift and flare of eyes that faced
The sun, like a friend with whom their love is done.
O larger shone that smile against the sun,—
Mightier than his whose bounty these have spurned.
So, soon they topped the hill, and raced together
Over an open stretch of herb and heather
Exposed. And instantly the whole sky burned
With fury against them; and soft sudden cups
Opened in thousands for their blood; and the green slopes
Chasmed and steepened sheer to infinite space.
Of them who running on that last high place
Leapt to swift unseen bullets, or went up
On the hot blast and fury of hell’s upsurge,
Or plunged and fell away past this world’s verge,
Some say God caught them even before they fell.
But what say such as from existence’ brink
Ventured but drave too swift to sink.
The few who rushed in the body to enter hell,
And there out-fiending all its fiends and flames
With superhuman inhumanities,
Long-famous glories, immemorial shames—
And crawling slowly back, have by degrees
Regained cool peaceful air in wonder—
Why speak they not of comrades that went under?

I was quite moved by this, such a beautiful poem in harsh times and can see how the poetry could inspire such a beautiful painting. When my children were little I used to make poems up about them and thought how can i bring them to life. This has given me an idea of how to just that.

I thought perhaps that by using the poems and the many (I mean many) pictures that they made as children, could be integrated into something that brings about remembering memories, but retaining them into a new form of art. My most prized possession are my photographs above anything else and wonder how this could be used by altering the essence of them and incorporating handwritten poetry that I have written.

This artist uses a traditional method of paper cutting and creates abstract cut work and also uses old books altering them to create sculpted artwork. I like the way the basic book is adapted creating a sculptural pieces of art. They are intricately cut and I should imagine she draws the image first to allow for the placement to be accurate. Because if the book is cut in the wrong way the book would be ruined. It must take a lot of time to create and attention to detail would be a must.

6a00e54fcf7385883401a3fd41b4ed970b-800wi 6a00e54fcf7385883401a511f1d242970c-800wi 6a00e54fcf7385883401a511f183cd970c-800wi

Her inspiration comes from traditional myth and folklore. Being American, having grown up with tales of the native culture, her attention to the folklore of England, drawing on our history. From a young age I read a lot of fairy tales with my favourite being Grimm’s fairy tales which I had since childhood. There are many areas I have discovered by the research, but the resounding theme that emerges is of a fantasy or ethereal nature.

I feel this is where my interest is being drawn to and has peaked my interest in learning about the folklore of England and maybe generate some new ideas that stem from this.

I do appreciate the art created but destroying a book is an alien thought to me. But the work that is created allows an old forgotten book to be ‘reborn’ and live once more. I had thought when layering paper to create a central void. But this was before I had seen this interesting and compelling work.

The work of Lorenzo Duran uses cut leaves as his medium, which he painstaking carves using a scalpel. His work is stunning and must take a lot of time and attention to detail. With the obvious cutting there is a question that I asked myself was how they would be preserved, as they dry out and would be extremely fragile.

He cleans and dries them before storing away. I have done pressed flowers in the past and understand how they can be dried, but even so must still be somewhat fragile, especially as the main body of the leaf is carved away. He believes that the art created allows the leaf not to ‘die’ and shows the relationship between art and nature.

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There are a number of utube tutorials to follow and these are a number chosen all very different

Pau Kenry
Delicate art of paper cutting Pau Kenry. This is a similar technique to Lorenzo Duran, but instead of using leaves, this artist uses paper, and is extremely delicate. I haven’t found a lot of information on him, which is a shame as I would like to explore this more.

Bovey Lee
Again this artist uses nature as her inspiration and feels that this is her escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. She prefers the tranquility of the art she produces and a sense of balance.

Using her Chinese heritage she uses rice paper and relates it to drawing with a knife. Chinese paper cutting is a traditional skill, where the everyday life is translated depicted scenes from life experiences. She uses this in a contemporary fashion, whilst still keeping the roots of the technique. However with the advance of technology she uses computer to aid the process and serve as a guide However she prefers to cut things by hand and keep to her roots.

Her work is organic in design and her work as an illustrator is evident in her work. However as an artist she is quite diverse in the art she creates, from drawing, screen printing and a number of other artworks.
yuko-yamamoto-3 (1)

She is yet another artist that takes inspiration from nature, mimicking the delicacy of flowers and trees and the movement they make. I like the intricacies of the work produced, but not sure if I would have the patience.
However, the artwork on this page is stunning.


Rogan Brown uses the complexities of nature from its architecture to organic growth. He also uses the intricacies of the microscopic world, which is something that I started off my course with, as having studied biochemistry, had a huge interest in viruses, so resonates with me. The main focus of his work looks at the life and death process.

Using the complexity of a science and art and in my opinion, he has transformed this beautifully. All his work is handmade using paper and similar to some of the artists already researched.

Throughout my research there is resonating theme, that many artists use nature for inspiration.



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I really like the bottom image, totally unwearable but an interesting garment. It distorts the body almost like a spring changing the whole image of what a human body is.

Issey Miyake is an artist who manipulates fashion, which was inspired by the preoccupation of women’s sexuality. He creates garments that emphasize the female form predominantly the breasts and bottom molding them to the wearer. Which is difficult in today’s society to get clothes to fit. I myself find it difficult to find dresses to wear, due to being big busted and usually have to go up a size. This is problematic as the rest of the dress is not fitted. He uses a lot of pleating in this work, which lends itself to the person wearing it. However, if this was a pleated top for myself would emphasize what I have, so he would have achieved his goal.


Intricate modular paper sculptures by Richard Sweeney

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The inspiration that Richard Sweeny uses comes from snow and clouds and their organic nature.  All the work is handmade with materials sourced that come from mundane items all around us. He believes that by using the objects people discard, offer new insights into the object itself. His sculptures are usually complex self-contained units and can be small or large installations.

The technique he uses involves bending the paper which is glued together. However not all design are glued, instead pleats aid his work in the folds that he does. Much of his work involves a computer and computer numeric control. Once again, science and art go hand in hand.
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Intricate Modular Paper Sculptures by Richard Sweeney

I particularly like the bottom picture, due to the shape. I find myself interested in the handmade pleating techniques which would lend itself to sculpting.


Susan uses the relationship between clothing and the person wearing it and how the clothing gives us our identity. She states “we shape the clothes we wear making them as individual as a thumbprint and like a thumbprint they can expose and betray”.

She describes her work The Paper Dress and states ‘If life is a fairy tale, the paper dresses reflect the fragility of the happy ending’. This is an interesting concept and really questions what I wish to achieve.

The fairy tale world or fantasy seems to feature a lot in other artists work. Many of them seek to leave the material world and all its toils and troubles. I am not the exception as the strange and unusual have led me down many paths. Many years ago I studied Witchcraft and was surprised at the avenues I took, learning about Herbs, Aromatherapy and much more. This can also be said about my huge obsession with Genealogy, which I have been doing for over 30 years. I have been asked numerous times, isn’t it boring, well the simple answer to that is no. I was taken on a huge journey of discovery, from the obvious family history, but touched on social, historical, geographical, traditional, mortality in fact I could go on.

This can be said of the exploration and research on Creative Arts. When I started Mixed Media and read the material, I wasn’t too enamored. However once I got into the exercises, it became more apparent why they need to be explored and found to my surprise, out of one idea popped another and after the initial block raced ahead.

Going back to Susan Cutts, I noticed that she tends to use poetry within her work. The Nursery Rhyme, for example is made from handmade paper using Abaca fibre. I feel there is a sinister air about it, possibly because of the reference to the poem I knew as a child

Ring-a-ring o’ roses,
A pocket full of posies,
A-tishoo! A-tishoo!
We all fall down

Most people know this to be possibly of reference to the Bubonic Plague, but this is not definitive.

The paper figures huddle above a bed of roses, which appear closed, and aloof. But knowing the poem and having studied Biochemistry, and viruses and their effects. The Bubonic Plague, produced boils and blood, it’s the blood I see reflected in the roses which is sharp in contrast to the pallid colour of the dresses.

Although much of her work uses clothing, there is a feeling of nostalgia drawing from history, which is something that I relate to, as I am constantly drawn to the past. Especially art as I prefer the masterpieces of the old masters, however I am gaining a new understanding of art today. Before ‘really’ looking at modern art I had a preconceived idea of how art should be and that has somewhat changed. By exploring each artist I have found connections previously missed. By exploring why someone creates a piece and why make me appreciate it on its own merits and not dismiss it as useless!

His work was on display in 2014 in New York at the Klein Sur Gallery. The sculptures that are made have the distinction of being flexible and for me somewhat disturbing. The inspiration is drawn from Chinese traditions and the use of Paper Gourds. The technique uses layered paper that is glued together, but the interesting part is made of layers of honeycomb paper. The work is breath taking which the movement it has. I can understand how long it would be to make one sculpture, as I attempted a honeycomb ball, which was frustrating to do and I abandoned after admitting defeat.
honbo-2 (1)

Originally he was a book editor and designer and is obvious where his initial idea came from. the work that he does involves stacks of paper similar to a book which he sculpts into a 3d design. The only difference is the sheets are glued together and carved to form a sculpture.

However the crisp white sculpture, is not the only sculptures he has done. In 2015 he created a profusion of colour with The Rainbow Flower Garden Taking on Gun Violence. Using paper lanterns and unfolding blossom he portrays a tranquil feeling but on closer inspection, there are gun as part of the installation. At first I thought why spoil the beautiful feeling first created, but then realized the meaning behind the whole piece. The thought and direct response to the 2012 Newtown Massacre, where 20 children and 6 teachers lost their lives after being gunned down by a madman.

The rainbow paper flower garden taking on gun violence

SCAD Savannah – 2015 Summer – Exhibitions – Li Hongbo Reception – "Irons for the Ages, Flowers for the Day" – SCAD Museum of Art – Photography by Marc Newton
SCAD Savannah – 2015 Summer – Exhibitions – Li Hongbo Reception – “Irons for the Ages, Flowers for the Day” – SCAD Museum of Art – Photography by Marc Newton

He said “everyone has a dream. Dreams of a comfortable life, a beautiful environment, a peaceful society and so on, but some selfish people damage others’ lives and dreams because of their own excessive desire. They revert to guns, one of the most deadly weapons be used to threaten and kill people who do not ‘obey’ their dreams of beauty.’

This is something that I myself am very passionate about and always say “Guns don’t kill people, people kill people!”

This artwork in my opinion is a memorial to those who have fallen and maybe one person who sees it may have a change of heart if they understand the impact of their actions.The artist himself believes that his work, could be a tool for self-reflection.

He also makes art on Butchers knives, which is a little disturbing to say the least. The artwork is carved into the knives with a 2d image raised, but still attached to the knife. It’s almost like they have escaped the blade but somehow not free, similar to the art of Peter Calleson. It is here, that he warns society that the destruction of animals for gluttony will destroy humanity. Using the knife shows the ability to cut and by having the animals cut out of the blade, it was for them that the knife was intended.

hongbo-1 hongbo-2

Shadow Knives: Silhouette Artwork Cut from Butcher Knives by Li Hongbo

I find it quite alarming that you have such a brutal tool, very much in contrast to the delicate carvings. It makes me feel unnerved.

She starts the process by drawing intuitively onto large sheets of paper with Indian ink and a brush. With an idea in mind, she determines the size, shape or direction and when done cuts the white shapes out. In doing this the first cut determines the next and so on.


When making a mock up in her studio she leaves the perfecting to the installation date, where an initial idea is never the same as the final cut. Her interest lies within weather patterns, which shows in her work that is natural and flowing, almost billowing like clouds. She makes good use of light within her artwork, which can either be natural or illusionary. The only sad thing is the art installation is created for one exhibition then dismantled.

Reflectory comment
Initially I wasn’t sure how the samples would turn out. I had decided I didn’t want to do pleats, but on reflection I decided that as it was a thing I didnt like then I should push the boundaries of my own limitations. I had always related pleated skirts to school skirts of which I hated with a passion. The problem I found was it was not easy to get the pleats ironed properly and as I like clothing to be pressed this was a problem to me. I am very pleased with the samples made as I found that by using different shapes created varying results. And the research undertaken showed me that sticking rigidly to a technique that I considered old fashioned, could be transformed for the modern market.

The embossing exercises did not inspire me at all and was unsure how this would be useful in my own work. Although there were a few marks that showed an interesting element, but not many. I felt the surface texture it provided was limited and was unsure how this could be translated into fabric. I may have narrowed this success by the materials chosen, but nonetheless still feel that it is not something I would pursue.

The scratching exercises provided some unusual surface design and was a surprising revelation. I hadn’t thought this could be of use, but the various tools used, pressure and speed made a huge difference on the marks made. This is definitely an area where I would like to explore further and where my work made the most impact. I find myself looking out of the generalization of  textiles and to an area that can encompass other materials. I find that as an artist I have started to find my own voice. I am a big advocate of the environment and this technique has highlighted that my passion for saving items from the tip, could be the way forward for me.

I also found that by scratching up and down that the marks provided new insight into how important direction is in composition. This would be important in clothing where if the direction was wrong the item would be unbalanced or look wrong. The other thing that was discovered is that the material chosen is very important for the technique needed. Some of the surfaces used did not respond well to the tool used, either tearing the paper or not producing the right results.

When attempting the holes exercises, I wasn’t expecting too much as I really couldn’t see what value this would have. However, that opinion has changed. The holes throughout the exercise were varied, from small to large. In areas the paper was destroyed and left an undefined hole. I liked the pin pricking as it is controlled and is similar to the artist Jamie Poole who creates pictures using holes and a Joss stick. As I mentioned earlier I had attempted this but not too successfully.
Some of the exercises were attempted, but after a few examples were abandoned. This was because either they didn’t work or I became bored with.
Melting plastic showed some interesting results altering the properties of the material, but again I don’t think this is how I want to work.
I find myself in conflict as there are so many ideas and paths to go, and have to decide which way that would be.

With all the artists that I have researched, I have gained a new insight into art. Many of the reasons why they create something has made me question why I create art. One it is an escape from the stresses of everyday life and I enjoy creating something usually out of found materials, breathing new life into something that would be destined for the tip. I have learnt a lot of new techniques and as I really enjoy research this was by far one of the best things about the course so far. But also new techniques have been learnt, and something that pushes me further to learn more.  I look forward to the next part of the course.


Inspiration to explore

iris van herpen
fabric manipulation stitch and slash
the thirteenth depository – painting with slashed fabric  useful fashion information
Italian clothing  period
contemporary garment construction

Layered flower cutting and folding technique               
Paper cutting. This artist cuts paper into very intricate designs. Rita Geru
metallic foam embossing
raised canvas
rolled newspaper
steampunk altered bottle

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ttp:// how to use your own quiling paper strips. 25 amazing paper cut artists.


Author: huggywitch

I have been doing textiles for a number of years and recently started my degree. I have always had an interest in theatre costume design and this is where my passion lie.

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