I believe I described PapercutsbyJoe by saying his pictures say it all and to quote myself from before, “he is the master, and each of his pieces is hand-cut from a single piece of black paper.” I still don’t really have words to describe his work except awe-inspiring. Even if you did not know his pieces were hand-cut from a single piece of black paper, you would still be mesmerized by solely his silhouettes. He takes everyday aspects from nature and architecture and turns it into a work of art. It is as if you are looking at this everyday object for the first time.
Name: Joe Bagley
Is this a fulltime business for you?
Yes, I’ve been papercutting full time since the fall of 2008
Why do you choose paper as your median?
I think I just enjoy the fact that people are impressed when you make something from paper. It’s a very common material, so whenever it is transformed into something beautiful or complicated, it gets a great reaction from others.
What led you to this?
This started as a hobby when I was 10 having first done it at a summer art program. I really enjoyed working with the sharp knives, and I kept up the hobby for years. A few years ago I started trying to make my own designs and it just grew from there.
Do you ever feel “artist’s block”, and if so how do you overcome it?
YES! I tend to work in big bursts of manic excitement and enthusiasm. I get ideas, crank out a bunch of designs and then I feel mentally empty and kind of let things go on their own for a while while I wait for the next burst of inspiration. I regularly have worries that I’ll never have a good idea again. Sometimes it’s just seeing something on the street or at a museum that gets my creativity going. A recent trip to a Natural History museum broke a long dry spell and I now have over a dozen bug and animal designs that I am really proud of. I designed them all in one day, and cut them for the etsy listings over a few days.
How would you describe your style?
I would call it the New American Style of Papercutting. Basically I invented itJ It’s hyper realistic and emphasizes the difficult areas of a design rather than pass over them or avoid them like traditional papercutting. Basically it’s creating the largest most detailed designs I can possibly do with paper.
Who are some of your favorite artists and sites?
I really like Roa, Alexander McQueen, Dali, Shepard Fairey, Tord Boontje, bansky, Lady Gaga, anyone that just goes for it.
What makes you unique?
I hope I’ve raised the bar for all papercutters. And if I haven’t yet, I still plan to do so. I sell mostly small simplified silhouettes on etsy, mostly because they are affordable, but my large pieces have 10,000+ holes in them and have been shown in numerous galleries. Nobody has come close to doing the types of designs I do with nature and architecture.
To see more of Joe’s work: