Paper cutting – a bird

Today was the first day i tried paper cutting. One of my lovely sisters in law, Susie, and her family, gave  me a book on paper cutting called ‘paper panda’s guide to paper cutting‘  by paper panda and friends, as well as a paper cutting board and knife. Having read the start of the book on Christmas day i realised i would need a different knife for cutting as they recommend changing the blade every 10 to 15 minutes to keep the cuts sharp. I ordered a new knife and replacement blades and when they arrived today i couldn’t wait to get started! 

I tried their practise activities and felt rather smug  when my circle looked like a circle and not like a 50p as they suggested it probably would on my first attempt, so i felt confident in starting a proper one from one of their templates. I chose a small one as i figured out would be quicker to do, and i’d  feel less upset if i messed it up, but I’m really pleased with the outcome. 

I didn’t change the blade, but can see a difference in the cut quality at the bottom of the picture. I’m not entirely sure though if that’s because of the blade or because i was getting impatient to finish it and was maybe being less careful and getting a bit quicker! 
I really enjoyed doing this, especially as a relaxing activity after getting home from my work as a reception class teaching assistant and before cooking dinner. I’m looking forward to trying a bigger design next. 

Drawings

This is a cheaty post, updating what i have already done! I started working on the draw everyday book at the end of last year. The idea is that you spend a month working on a given topic area in a given medium, and obviously get  variety over the course of a year. The first month is a month of nature, using markers and black pen. These are my first 3 drawings. I’ve found it hard not necessarily being able to draw a general outline of something, but was really pleased with how my dragonflies turned out. I wasn’t impressed with the idea of drawing a whole field of sunflowers but i really enjoyed it once i started. I never felt very inspired by the redwood tree, and really don’t like the picture I’ve done as it feels very flat  and childish. I guess if I’m not actually going to draw every day then i can pick and choose the ones i actually do…. But then the danger is that I’ll not like the sound of something (like the sunflowers) and then miss out on an enjoyable experience. What i like about the set topics is that i look for a picture on google, and then spend time looking at it in more detail. I appreciate the time to look at the smaller details of things and to notice different colours and patterns. That said, i find it hard that with the felt pens i only have a limited range of colours, and no way of blending them. 

Introduction to my blog!

This is the post excerpt.

Well, here goes….my first ever blog, at the suggestion of my husband!  My name is Julia, and I turned 40 last year, and decided it would be a good time to try new things.  I’ve always enjoyed arts and crafts, and this year I have decided that I would like to explore different ways of being creative.  At the end of last year I did some wet felting, and I’ve done bits of crochet for a while.  Then I’ve just bought a couple of needle felting kits, and paper cutting things.  I’ve also bought a book called ‘draw every day, draw every way’, and think it would be good to have a way of sharing what I have done each time I do something on a creative project.  So here is my record of this attempt at being more creative over the course of a year (but which hopefully may continue longer).  I know already that it would be a crazy target to try to do something every day, so I’m not going to attempt that, despite the title of the book!  I just want to take opportunities where I can to develop new skills, and relax, and hopefully develop my creativity along the way.  I’m hoping that having a blog will motivate me to keep going, and be a nice record of the things I do, even if no-one ends up reading it!