Link to Book Design sections on Paper

There are a lot of different things you can do with paper other than just drawing on it – cutting, folding, moulding, sculpting, layering – and that’s before you’ve even thought about what kind of paper or how big it is or whether to bind it together into a book. There are infinite possibilities and illustrators and artists have continued to explore paper’s flexibility as a surface and as a tool for image-making in its own right.

“Paper has been used for communication since its invention; either between humans or in an attempt to communicate with the spirit world. I employ this delicate, accessible medium and use irreversible, destructive processes to reflect on the precariousness of the world we inhabit and the fragility of our life, dreams and ambitions.” Su Blackwell

Research point
Look at a range of illustrators and artists who use paper as a medium rather than just a surface within their work. How have they used paper and what processes have they put it through?
Reflect on their working processes in your learning log.

3D paper sculpture

Google search on paper art gives many examples of 3D stand up art and quilling. Some of this is extremely delicate. Working in 3D gives the possibility to exploit shadows and lighting.

Bruce Angrave (1912–83): a freelance illustrator was well known for his railway and Underground posters, but much of his other work was created using paper sculptures.

Su Blackwell: Contemporary artist uses old books as a starting point for her sculptural paper pieces.

Guy Laramee uses paper as a material in which to carve.

2D decoupage

Kara Walker cuts out powerful large black silhouettes of themes like slavery and colonialism, pasting these directly onto white walls. See:  and examples from an exhibition at Tate Modern:

Matisse decoupage  He also worked on a series of decoupage images for the Circus

Japanese Origami

Mexican ‘Día de los Muertos’ : (Day of the Dead) paper-cut images.

Rob Ryan works in a similar way to Mexican papercuts, creating delicate
flat pieces