Wednesday, 14 October 2009

Wycinanki "How To"

A little while ago I was made aware of the Polish art of papercutting, known as Wycinanki. This involves cutting a black silhouette and then overlaying it with brightly coloured collaged details. Many wycinanki are symmetrical patterns, cut using the folded paper method and a pair of scissors. But I don't enjoy working that way. So I'm having a go at my own version - not symmetrical and cut with a knife. This is my initial sketch.

Here, I've added more detail to the sketch and started the cutting. The paper is black on the other side. The initial silhouette will be fairly simple and I hope to get the detail in there with the coloured overlays. I'm excited about this project. The circle is approximately 25cm diameter. If you want to see some genuine Polish wycinanki, take a look at my flickr favourites

The picture below shows the silhouette base for the papercutting. The fun starts now with cutting the collage overlays.

In the picture below, I have started experimenting with some coloured overlays. They're not stuck down yet, as I still haven't made up my mind and also I want to do a little bit more detail cutting on the black base (from the white "wrong" side) before I start sticking paper to the front (black) side. Now that the circle is cut, it measures 27cm diameter.

Now I've started sticking some collage on the black base. The only bit I'm not sure if I like, is the bird's head and crest - it looks like it's wearing an Egyptian headdress! Oh well - I'm still learning!

This is the final piece. Overall, I'm pretty pleased with the result, but there are things that need improving. I think I could have done more with the bird.

Measures 30cm dia (including mount)