Johan Scherft: Actually, my interest in paper craft was before I started to make paintings, but always I had a love for drawing. As a child I drew a lot of comic books. My interest in paper craft started when I made a paper Kingfisher. This was a very sudden interest. I think I made this first paper bird when I was about 14 years old. Also this was the start of my interest in birds.
Johan Scherft: Of course, paper is delicate and vulnerable, it needs to be handled with care when you work with in three-dimensions. As well in the creating process, as in the presentation. And the medium paper has its limitations, rounded shapes are hard to make. I find it most challenging to make the piece in such a way that the viewer doesn’t see it’s paper anymore, to make shapes that are really rounded and to mask the edges of the paper as good as possible.
Can you share to us your creative process with your papercrafts?
Johan Scherft: The designing of a paper bird involves a lot of steps, which makes it always very interesting process. First designs I usually now make on the computer. I start with designing a basic shape of the head and rump on the computer, and print the flat template of this shape on plane white paper, and on large scale.
When I have the design ready – seldom in one try, often more attempts are neccesary- I scale the model to the right size, I print the outlines of the patterns very vague on good quality, but thin paper. Then I do the paintwork with watercolor. The paintwork is the most time-consuming job. Next, the model is assembled, but it is seldom right in one time. I touch it up further with paint until its right. Wings, tails, legs and feet are added in a later stadium.