NYC Skyline-Plus Papercut Ketubah

Posted by on Jul 3, 2022 in Ketubah Art, News, Papercuts, Visual Art | 0 comments

NYC Skyline-Plus Papercut Ketubah

A pandemic love story led to a move from NYC to Harrisburg, PA, and the bride and groom asked to have both cities incorporated into the design of their singular ketubah. As with all of my commissions, I requested a color palette, wording, and of course any abstract or specific likes, dislikes, and wishes.  Armed with lots on the wish list, I got to work with grid paper (LOTS of that!!) and worked and reworked the imagery to create a chuppah, meaningful and beautiful poles, and a skyline packed with recognizable icons.  The Pennsylvania state capitol building sits front and a little off center, proudly announcing that it, too, is part of the story! When creating such a papercut design, there are ways to ‘engineer’ the work to encourage the eye to see depth even if the images themselves lie quite flat.  I cut away lots of paper to suggest shadows, thus allowing buildings (and a bridge, a statue, and an arch) to appear in front of or behind one another. Gluing a very wide open, lacy papercut to a painted background turned me into Macgyver for a while, as you can see here.  The last thing I cut out was the open center and by then there was absolutely no way I could glue and lay down the entire piece perfectly aligned with the text, so I brought out the OED, a heavy mailing tube, and some removable tape and went at it with a tiny brush, unrolling as I went along. The background painting is created with gouache (an opaque water-based paint), mixed to the six colors chosen by the couple and applied in two layers, with texture added when wet.  I then buffed the surface in the center to allow for the lettering of the text. ...

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Philly Blue Ketubah

Posted by on May 15, 2022 in Ketubah Art, News, Papercuts, Visual Art | 0 comments

Philly Blue Ketubah

Very simple guidance here – blue color, papercut, a passage from Song of Songs, and images of beloved Philadelphia… And here it is. Oh, darn, I should have added a pretzel with...

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Peacocks in Their Favorite Places Ketubah

Posted by on May 10, 2022 in Ketubah Art, News, Papercuts, Visual Art | 0 comments

Peacocks in Their Favorite Places Ketubah

When a couple provides a carefully curated list of images for a ketubah design, I am usually very, very happy because it activates my ‘now make this all hang together beautifully’ energy.  Here’s a great example. We have two skiers, an apple tree, favorite house plants, collected stone critters, lake, beach, mountain, a Yiddish verse… and intricately hand-cut and colored peacocks.  The wonder of art is that we can pretend that all the seasons live happily together on one the page!  What...

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Collaborative Two-Part Ketubah

Posted by on Dec 27, 2021 in Ketubah Art, News, Papercuts, Visual Art | 0 comments

Collaborative Two-Part Ketubah

  A challenge in this time of upended expectations came to me in the guise of a printed document that needed embellishment.  Early in the pandemic, this couple chose to marry in a tiny ceremony at a very carefully chosen woodland site in Maine.  With a text already completed and access to photos, I was able to recreate the setting in a ‘frame’ around the print:  the huppah, bridal bouquet, site of their engagement and dinners, and reference to the garlic scapes, bicycles, and landscape of the beautiful setting of the wedding.  A bit of papercut art breaks through the frame and connects the bouquet to the central text.  With so much taken away in isolation, this work of the heart is a step towards honoring that great strange day.  Mazal tov!  ...

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Kente Cloth and Papercut Marriage Document

Posted by on Oct 4, 2021 in Ketubah Art, News, Papercuts, Visual Art | 0 comments

Kente Cloth and Papercut Marriage Document

There are times when the blending of families and cultures leads to a synergy where the whole is far greater than the sum of its parts.  This document offers a glimpse into one of those magical meldings.  The groom’s father is Ghanaian and the traditional wedding pattern of his home region’s  woven kente cloth became the painted border of this piece. The traditional Jewish papercut art and text in modern Hebrew center the document as part of the centuries-old custom of beautifying the marriage contract with artwork.  There are four small Adinkra symbols which are Ghanaian symbols representing unity/human relationships, love/harmony, cooperation/interdependence, and safety/security. The rich colors are created with gouache – an opaque water-based paint that was a pleasure to work with on this piece. Sharp knives, sharp pencils, and tiny pointed brushes.  I love my...

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Anchorage to Philadelphia

Posted by on Sep 2, 2021 in Ketubah Art, News, Papercuts, Visual Art | 0 comments

Anchorage to Philadelphia

What’s the wish list?  I never know, as I meet a couple (these days always on Zoom…), what their requests will be in terms of design.  For this one, the specs were few and varied, and as always, my job was to make it an aesthetic whole.  THAT’S where the fun begins! Two trees, a koa and an olive, interlocking roots that form the mountain range above Anchorage, the Philadelphia skyline – with William Penn restored to his monumental glory, and a color palette limited to yellow, orange, and royal blue.  The solution was to hold the design together as a papercut and slip the color behind using pastel chalk sifted through a small sieve and then...

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