Happy New Year!
This was my holiday card a few years ago, and I've decided to use the proverb as my new year's resolution this year - I'm giving up on my usual ones to lose 10 pounds and get organized, seeing as the 10 pounds have been joined by a a bunch of friends and my level of disorganization has also grown incrementally. Instead, this year I'm going to concentrate on hoping, chewing, breathing, saying and loving more. (Okay, I'm hoping I magically lose 20 pounds and get organized in the process). I'm sticking a copy of this picture on my fridge this year, and you can too by downloading the high-res pdf here. (It's not a great image, because I gave away the original and this scan was made from a copy I had - sorry.)
I love making this type of papercut, although I haven't done any for a couple years. To make one, I do a soft pencil drawing, indicating all the black areas on high quality tracing paper, and then transfer the areas that will be black to the back of a piece of silhouette paper (which you can buy from Dick Blick Art Supply here). (I use a wooden tool with a point to rub over the penciled areas.) Next I cut away all the parts I don't want to be black with a craft knife, starting with the thinnest/smallest places. I then use the tracing paper drawing again to transfer the shapes of the non-black sections onto the backs of colored papers and cut those shapes out. Finally, I carefully glue the colored papers to the wrong side of the silhouette paper. I use a toothpick to apply the glue very carefully to the black areas, which can be very thin so it's a bit painstaking; other artists glue the colored papers in position and then add the black on top. Some paper artists call this technique "paper applique,"and it's known in Japan as kiri-e.
One of my favorite illustrators/fine artists, Aki Sogabe uses this technique with greater skill than I can muster. You can visit a website with samples of her art and a discussion of her technique here.
Here's one more example of my applique cut paper art. This picture was a sample of final art for a picture book I've never sold (But I Won't Share My Bear). All the black areas are connected, except the eyes, nose and the circle things on the baseball cap. My oldest son, Kyle, posed for the drawings; he turned 21 yesterday. Can't believe how quickly the years have gone!