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Saturday, April 8, 2017

Cherry trees n blossoms, adult art class; Papercut paperdoll chain, kids' drawing class, 4/3-4/17

Cherry blossom festival and trees. Adult art class worked from reference photos. We started with a blind contour drawing. Then we did a continuous line drawing of the same blossom photo. Next we did a continuous line drawing of a whole tree in full bloom. Finally we worked from a stylized Chinese art reference that focused on just a branch of a tree with blossoms. In this case we started by capturing the gesture of the branch shape, next the offshoots, then the squiggles of blossoms.

The final drawings were done full size from working from the chosen reference image and as one wished, though students shared the sheets of reference images, which got a bit awkward! One student was concerned over feelings of flying blind, but discovered that finished  artwork once on the wall looked much better at that distance. And that is how it should be.

Kids' class was a small group. Our papercut paperdoll chains were in honor of Hans Christian Andersen, whose birthday is April 2nd. We have all forgotten that he long ago wrote such classic fairy tales, that many of us only know in the Disney version, as The Little Mermaid, and Frozen, (The Snow Queen). He was also a great storyteller and cut papercuts while he spun his stories.

To cut a paperdoll chain of 4 figures, cut a sheet of paper in half the long way. Then fold it in half, (to 4.25"x5.5"), then in half again (to 5.5"x2.125". I have usually done this as an accordion fold but finally tested to see if it would work by just folding it over. It does. You can draw a figure on one side. Try to make the figure as big as possible or it will be hard to cut. The arms should touch at each side of the long folds/edges. Those are the hands. Just make the hands a bit fatter than the arms. Then just cut around your drawing holding the 4 paper layers together as you cut through all 4 layers at one time. Make sure the connecting points, in this case the hand, stay connected at those folded edges. If you cut your figures loose from those points, you will have 4 loose people. That would be ok too, but they won't be a paperdoll 'chain'!

Decorate your people if you want. We only had time to hastily color a contrasting background on which to stick the chain. Just a dab of glue stick under each head should be enough to keep the chain in place.

Here is my video of a livestream recording where I demonstrate cutting the papercut paperdoll chain:

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