14 Aug 2011

The cutter

Here's a short video of me cutting a bird that is part of a large installation I am making for an exhibition later this year.

This is what I do for hours on end, it's surprisingly physical. I have already had a RSI injury (or upper body work related injury as the hospital liked to call it) in my hand to I try to stop regularly to relax my hands and neck.

The key is to keep changing blades as the blunter the blade gets the harder it gets to cut the paper and then I am more likely to make mistakes or the paper can rip.


  1. Thanks for sharing this Claire! There's a lot of patience in your work. I can see how as you get closer to finishing each piece it would become even more delicate - I think I would be holding my breath a lot in fear of tearing it after so much work! Beautiful craftsman(lady)ship : )

  2. I can see how hard that would be on your lower arms. It looks as if you have to cut into the mat pretty deeply. I know all about rsi so.. I know I could not do linocutting for instance because it involves too much force. May be you could find a way to cut into some different material than a mat to make it lighter on the arms? I have seen other video's on the web..study other artists.. So nice to see you at work anyhow!

  3. Thanks for your comments, I guess I use up all my patience in my work.

    I don't think its the mat that's the problem, the paper I'm cutting in the video is quite thick and slightly waxy so it take's quite a lot of pressure to cut it, thankfully not all paper is like that. I will have a look at what other artists use, but all the ones I have talked to all use similar mats.