Clare Willcocks

Clare Willcocks: May 2014

Monday, 26 May 2014

Hamish, hearts and happy times

I forgot to mention in my last post, but it has been a whole year since I started writing my blog!

The 12 months since that very first post written in Malaysian Borneo has been a whirlwind. Finishing our travels, starting new jobs, moving house twice, meeting new people and of course a whole lot of creative bits and bobs in between have made this year fly past at 100 miles an hour. I've enjoyed every minute and am so glad to have this blog as reminder of all the good things which have happened.

Now I have a lovely group of followers on Facebook and Twitter, some great online 'blogger' friends and commissions to keep me busy in my spare time! Thank you to all who've been there from the beginning and those who've joined me along the way. :)

Now, on to this week's projects!

This is my latest paper cut heart, a (slightly belated) housewarming present for some friends. I asked for a list of what they would like included and drew out the design by hand before I started to cut. Can you spot a kite surfer, cupcakes, butterfly, teapot and teacups, poppies, hearts, Dartmoor, wine, stars, bees, 'love' and a bike?

paper cut heart
Copyright Clare Willcocks
Here are a couple of close-ups. The kite surfer is about as small as my fingernail. I think I'll replace this background colour with a dark olive green to frame it.

paper cut heart
This bank holiday weekend has been quite a productive one as I also managed to get started on another lovely piece. The 'Hamish' in today's post title was a very special Scottie dog of whom very few photos were taken, so this paper cut is to remember him by.

It's designed in a similar style to the cat paper cut which I did recently, although this time I've decided to feature the dogs and doggy bits and pieces as negative space.

paper cutting

It still has a little way to go but it's a lovely one to cut. As always, it started out as a hand-drawn design in reverse, rubbed out and tweaked until I was happy!

design a paper cut

In fact, I've done quite a bit of drawing this weekend. This is a biro sketch I did while watching Sam fishing in Shaldon, South Devon.

biro drawing

Finally, I'll leave you with these photos taken on our walk today from Mortehoe, just a little further up the coast from Woolacombe in North Devon. We took a picnic and followed a circular route up and down along the cliffs and then back around to the village, finishing with a cup of tea in Town Farmhouse café.

Woolacombe beach looked very busy, it's clear that summer's on its way!

Woolacombe from Mortehoe

The bottom right photo below is a thumb-sized caterpillar which we came across on the path.
Coast path Mortehoe
A nosy little lamb watched us from a precarious position where it was munching grass.

Coast path Mortehoe

I ended up with loads of photos of these little pink flowers!

South West Coast Path
And that's all for today! I would love for you to pop by my Facebook page with a like if you haven't already.

Also, don't forget that if you'd like to have a go at paper cutting yourself, my free template and tutorial can be found on Hope and Chances Creativity. :)

Today I'm sharing this post on the following blogs: Handmade Harbour, Manon Popje's Illustrations, Be Different Act Normal and Beyond the Picket Fence.

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Sunday, 18 May 2014

A pile of animals!

Remember the paper cut animal stack I started last week? Well it's finished!

It was so much fun to design and cut and I'm very pleased with the result.

There are lots of little details hidden within it, from the little mouse right at the bottom to the tiny spider dangling from his web.

I cut a stitch-like border around the edge to bring it all together.

This weekend we've done a bit of visiting 'up country'. Well, Bristol and Cheltenham...most places are up from Devon!

Yesterday evening we stayed with my sister who has just opened her new beauty salon, Tonic, in Cheltenham. It's been a lot of hard work and I'm extremely proud of her for what she's achieved over the last couple of years in order to get to this point.

Doesn't her salon look amazing?

My job today was to stencil her logo onto the reception desk and the board for outside the shop. I was quietly worried that it would all go horribly wrong and drip down the side of the desk or something awful like that, but thankfully there was no problem!

The logo matches her shop front and ties everything nicely together. If you live in the Cheltenham area, please pop by! Don't forget to mention I sent you! :)

I'm sharing this post on the following blogs: Handmade Harbour, Manon Popje's Illustrations, Lamb Around and Be Different Act Normal.

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Sunday, 11 May 2014

A stack of animals and a paper cutting tutorial

Hello everyone, happy Sunday!

Yesterday I joined a paper cutting group on Facebook run by Suzy from Folk Art Papercuts. A new paper cut theme will be set every few weeks for everyone to work on and we'll share our sketches, progress photos and final pieces with the group.

For the first challenge we were given the theme 'stacks of animals'. I sketched mine out yesterday and began cutting it today, here's how it looks so far.

paper cutting

There's quite a bit more cutting left to do around the edge, but I'm really happy with the animals in the middle. I'm used to cutting patterns rather than pictures, so it feels strange to cut such large sections.

The whole teetering stack is supported by a turtle and chicken.

paper cutting

This reminds me, I need to cut out some seeds for the chicken to peck! There's a little spider lurking in the undergrowth too...

paper cutting

This week I've also been busy working on a paper cutting tutorial for Hope and Chances Creativity's blog. It's the first guest post I've ever done so I was keen to get it right! If you'd like to have a go yourself, you can download my free paper cutting template here and pop over to Hope and Chances Creativity for instructions on how to use it. This is the what you'll end up with (fingers crossed)!

free paper cutting template

The other project I've managed to finish this week is a series of mini heart paper cuts which I started back in the middle of April. This one is to go on our wall so it's taken a back seat while I've been doing a couple of commissions. Here's what it looked like unframed.

paper cutting

And this is it finished.

paper cutting

The box frame was one we picked up at a car boot sale, full of dried plants!

I'll leave you with this photo taken today on our walk along the South West Coast Path through Bucks Woods, near Bucks Mills in North Devon. It was carpeted with bluebells - beautiful!

Bucks Woods, Bucks Mills

I'm sharing this post on the following blogs: Handmade Harbour, Be Different Act Normal, Sunny Simple Life and Tatertots and Jello.

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Monday, 5 May 2014

My bank holiday paper cutting cats

This bank holiday weekend has been all about crafting for my Mum and I. Mum's been busy working on a quilted cushion cover while I've been designing and cutting a paper cut commission.

This is a special paper cut for my blogger friend Suzy from Ike's World. A little birdy tells me she's offering 50% off digital stamps in her shop until 10 May so do pop on by!

The only specification for the paper cut is that it had to involve cats, so I tried to get as many into the 15cm x 15cm square as possible.

I'm a little bit nervous showing you this as it's the first time Suzy will have seen it too! Here goes...

A few close-ups too.

We used to have a cat named Molly, so I was thinking about all the poses she used to do to make sure I covered as many as possible!

I got a little mouse, a couple of butterflies and birds, and a few fish bones in there too!
The balls of string were quite tricky, but when paper cutting, you need to make sure that everything is held together somehow, so trails of string seemed perfect.

Suzy, I hope you like it!

The other thing I've been working on this weekend is an exciting project for a guest post for the lovely  Hope and Chances Creativity. Here's a sneaky peek of what's to come, I hope to be able to reveal all very soon!

As you can see, I'm going through a hot pink backing paper phase!

If you'd like to keep up to date with my blog, please follow on Facebook or Twitter, or by using one of the methods top right of this post.

I'm sharing today's post on the following blogs: Handmade Harbour, Lamb Around and Manon Popje's Illustrations.

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