I attended a program at my local library tonight called an introduction to the art of papercutting. It was taught by Annie Howe, who is an artist here in Baltimore. She provided the templates, self-healing mats, and #11 craft knives. Then she provided instruction, inspiration and encouragement as everyone in the group got to work. This was my first time working with papercutting as an art form. I have cut paper with an Exacto knife before, but this certainly takes it to another level. In two hours, I had enough time to cut out two of the basic templates that she brought for us to work on. Most people added a little something to the basic design. I added the frog on the mushroom and the animals on the tree. Other people got creative adding banners with letters and numbers to their designs. I thoroughly enjoyed the experience and I will have to put the skills I learned today to use. I can see myself using this for making cards rather than buying the paper cutting dies from the craft store. This is so much more versatile. And I already have all the tools at home just waiting to be used!
I have to say that papercutting is an easy concept to learn. And the basics are easy to do. Getting creative and getting into the extreme detail of an artist would take some time and practice. The key, according to Ms Howe is to always use a sharp blade and change blades often. A self healing mat is also a must to save your blades and your table top. She even said that you can find templates online and at the library to help you get started.