Paper craft is the collection of art forms employing paper or card as the primary artistic medium for the creation of three-dimensional objects. It is the most widely used material in arts and crafts. It lends itself to a wide range of techniques, as it can for instance be folded, cut, glued, molded, stitched, or layered.
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Papermaking by hand is also an important paper craft. Painting and calligraphy though they are commonly applied as decoration are normally considered as separate arts or crafts.
Paper crafts are known in most societies that use paper, with certain kinds of crafts being particularly associated with specific countries or cultures. In much of the West, the term origami is used synonymously with paper folding, though the term properly only refers to the art of paper folding in Japan. Other forms of paper folding include Zhezhi (Chinese paper folding), Jong-i.e.-jeop-gi, from Korea, and Western paper folding, such as the traditional paper boats and paper planes.
In addition to the aesthetic value of paper crafts, various forms of paper crafts are used in the education of children. Paper is a relatively inexpensive medium, readily available, and easier to work with than the more complicated media typically used in the creation of three-dimensional artwork, such as ceramics, wood, and metals. It is also neater to work with than paints, dyes, and other coloring materials. Paper crafts may also be used in therapeutic settings, providing children with a safe and uncomplicated creative outlet to express feelings.
The word “paper” derives from papyrus, the name of the ancient material manufactured from beaten reeds in Egypt as far back as the third millennium B.C. Indeed, the earliest known example of “paper folding” is an ancient Egyptian map, drawn on papyrus and folded into rectangular forms like a modern road map. However, it does not appear that intricate paper folding as an art form became possible until the introduction of wood-pulp based papers in China, where its invention is credited to Cai Lun in the Eastern Han Dynasty, in the 2nd century B.C. It is not known when the earliest use of folded paper as a medium was made, although it likely began shortly after the development of paper itself. The first Japanese origami is dated from the 6th century A.D
How to make a Paper Craft: Paper Craft Basic Techniques
In this Instructible we will make a tutorial about the how to make a paper craft using some basic techniques listed as following.
- Paper Mach
- Paper Cutting and Collage
- Working With Cardboard
we will discuss each of them individually in the following steps.
Step 1: Paper Mach
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Paper-Mach is the art of modelling with torn or shredded paper bound together with glue. usually a water-based type. The techniques are quickly mastered and offer endless variation. Almost any object can be used as a mold for Paper-Mach, although round objects are easier to cover smoothly if the mold is to be removed later. Bowls and large dishes are excellent. wire mesh shapes can be molded to produce any number of interesting shapes, and structures made from cardboard, known as armatures, can also be covered.
You can use Paper-Mach pulp to make bowls or to build up sculpted images. just push it into shape with your hands or a stiff paintbrush. Drying may take several days. To make your own paper pulp. tear five sheets of newspaper in to 2.3 cm (1 in) squares and place in a saucepan. Cover with water and simmer for 30 minutes, Spoon the paper and water into a blender and process to a pulp. Transfer the pulp to a lidded plastic box and store until required (it will keep for several weeks). When ready to use, add 2½ tablespoons PVA (white) glue and 1 tablespoon each wallpaper paste. plaster of Paris and linseed oil and stir vigorously.
- Tearing rather than cutting newspaper creates less obvious joins between strips. Newspaper has a grain and will tear much more easily in one direction than the other. Generally, the grain runs from the top to the bottom of the newspaper. If you try to tear against the grain, it becomes impossible to control.
- To make paper strips, grasp several folded sheets of newspaper in one hand. Begin to tear about 2.5 cm (1 in) from the edge, along the grain. Pull directly down, and the paper will tear into long, straight strips. Strips of almost any width can be produced this way.
PREPARING A MOLD
- Before applying Paper-Mach to a mold, the surface must be lightly greased with petroleum jelly to create a barrier between the glue and the mold, preventing the Paper-Mach from sticking to it. It will then be easy to remove the Paper-Mach when it has dried. Cling film (plastic wrap) can sometimes be used Instead.
- Cover large molds with five to six layers of paper strips, 2.5 cm (1 in) wide. Spread the strips with PVA (white) glue on both sides and lay them individually in the greased mold from top to bottom, The strips should protrude slightly beyond the mold. Lay the second and third layers at right angles to the first. Smooth each strip with your fingers and press out any air bubbles.
REMOVING FROM A MOLD AND FINISHING
- When the surface of the paper in the mold is dry, gently pull back the edge and, if it seems almost dry underneath, insert a blunt knife and gently pries (pry) the paper away from the mold. Leave the Paper-Mach upside down to dry completely.
- Trim the raw edge from the paper shape using scissors. Following the indent of the edge of the mold to ensure an accurate curve. To prevent the layers of paper from coming apart, bind the edges of the shape using thin strips of newspaper.
DRYING FLAT OBJECTS
- Paper-Mach objects such as picture frames and wall panels should be dried flat after sealing to prevent warping. Place the object on a wire cake rack or a sheet of thin plastic the glue will stick to the plastic as It dries, but the plastic can easily be peeled away once the Paper-Mach is dry.
MAKING A CARDBOARD FRAMEWORK
- You can make a three-dimensional mold using heavy corrugated cardboard and covering it with Paper-Mach. Measure each piece of the framework carefully, and glue and tape it in place to make it sturdy and durable. Brush the framework with diluted PVA (white) glue to seal the surface and leave to dry
- Cover the sealed framework with Paper-Mach strips, applying each layer at right angles to the previous one. About five layers will disguise the corrugations and make a strong object. Place the framework on a wire cake rack in a warm place to dry naturally; speeding up the drying can cause the Paper-Mach to warp.
USING A PLASTICINE SHAPE AS A MOLD
- Form Plasticize into the desired shape. Lightly grease it with petroleum jelly then cover with thin strips of newspaper dipped in diluted PVA (white) glue; five layers should be sufficient, Allow it to dry thoroughly.
- Draw a cutting line all around the edge of the shape. Using a craft knife, cut slowly around the shape to divide It n half. Gently separate the Plasticize from each paper shell.
- Fit the paper halves together, matching the cut edges exactly. Join them using masking tape and cover the join with three layers of thin Paper-Mach strips.
- Before you paint Paper-Mach. the surface should always be prepared properly, especially If it is made from newspaper. Smooth the surface with fine-grade sandpaper, disguising the edges of the paper strips. Wear a protective face mask when sanding.
- Prime the Paper-Mach with two coats of white paint, allowing it to dry between coats, This conceals the newsprint and provides a good ground for the decoration. Emulsion (latex), poster or powder paints all work well, If the decoration is to be acrylic paint, use this also for priming.