I live in a lovely old house in Chalkwell (near Leigh-on-Sea) Essex. Where I live and work inspired my business name.
I’m very lucky to have a view of the Thames Estuary and Two Tree Island from my studio at the top of the house.
I can smell the salty sea air when I crack open the window and samphire grows abundantly on Two Tree Island.
Handmade and Original
All my finished paper artwork, templates and related items are my own original, copyrighted designs.
Unlike mass-produced paper cut art available in many high street stores, I don’t use a laser cutter to cut the paper. All my original finished paper artwork is painstakingly and skillfully cut by my own hand using a surgical scalpel. This makes each piece unique.
Most of the downloadable templates I sell are based on art pieces I have created in the past. I have taken my original drawings and simplified/modified them in a way that they can be cut by hand (moderately!) easily or by cutting machines.
I do test my templates on a Silhouette Cameo to make sure they cut correctly.
For my finished art and commission pieces I used to sketch the design in pencil, before tracing in reverse onto the cutting paper. More recently I have been experimenting with drawing my designs digitally on my iPad.
It saves the tracing and scanning step and I can get straight to the fun part!
Depending on the size and complexity, a hand cut piece can take anything from 30 minutes to several hours, or even days, to complete. I change to a fresh blade roughly every 10 minutes. I use a glass cutting mat, rather than self-heal, so this along with the paper dulls the blade quite quickly.
My preferred paper weight range is 120 – 160gsm and my preferred blades are Swann Morton 11 and Swann Morton 15a.
Paper is such a delicate medium. I use high quality, acid free paper for my paper art which prolongs the longevity of the artwork over time.
My favourite papers are Canson Mi Teintes and Fabriano Tiziano pastel papers as they are a dream to cut.
All the other materials I use, including glues for infilling and collage work, are acid free.
I use bespoke, handmade real wood frames to frame my finished artwork as I believe this adds to the quality and uniqueness of my work. I buy my frames from an independent framer in the UK who also runs her own small business.