HIgh School Studio Lesson
in the Details
When an interior designer friend gave me her dis- continued wallpaper sample books, I immediately thought of the work of the
Canadian artist, Calvin Nicholls, who
makes amazing low-relief sculptures
from archival paper.
I wanted my students to see the
magic Nicholls makes with the simplest material: monochromatic papers.
Sharon McKittrick Boyle
I wrote to Nicholls to ask if there
was a DVD of his process that I could
purchase. He wrote back and gave me
some pointers for this project, explaining that he scores the individual paper
pieces before he attaches them to the
armature. He advised us to start with
birds and study their anatomy before
we built paper armatures. Some of my
students chose to create birds and others decided to try furry animals.
Fur, Scales, Feathers, and More
I began by asking students to draw a
creature they would like to construct
using this technique.
We looked at posters
and cards of work by
Nicholls for inspira-
tion. He cuts thousands
of individual pieces of
fur, scales, foliage, and
feathers to make his