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With my hand cut drawings I work in several different ways, from using a Stanley knife and scalpel, a handheld electric jigsaw or a plasma cutter. The cutting process changes depending on material and scale, but each way of cutting gives me a freedom that the laser cutter cannot.

Each piece starts the same, with observational drawing and research. From this I create a composition on the computer. With a laser cut piece this composition continues to be digital, but with hand cut work I transfer the digital image onto the sheet material (wood, plastic, or metal) and cut along the drawn line. At this stage changes can start to happen, my hand may glide in a fluid motion which doesn’t follow the drawn line, I may choose not to cut certain parts or cut away more than first planned. I find this part of the process so liberating, breaking away from the fixed digital composition, which in turn gives my hand cut drawings an extra sense of movement.

This photo shows the work of artists Martha Ellis. She has create a large scale black drawing of daffodils which have been cut from a plastic material. The drawing shows several daffodil flower heads and the leaves. The cutout drawing it mounted onto a wall with a gap behind it so it casts shadows beind it.


Hand cut foamex which is mounted off the wall casting shadows behind.

108/150cm or 42/59''


The drawing is unframed and mounted using specialist hanging blocks which are screwed directly into the wall. Blocks and screws are provided. Foamex is a lightweight PVC material.

this photo is a screen grab of a photoshop workspace. It is showing how Martha Ellis designs her drawings using the computer. You can see a few daffodil flower heads in black and white.
This photo is showing Martha Ellis at work in her studio as she cuts the daffodils out of a large sheet of plastic by hand. She is using a knife to cut sections out.
This photo shows Martha's hand holding a scalple as she cuts through the sheet plastic. She is cutting away part of a daffodil petal.
This photo is of a hand cut drawing of four snowdrops by artists Martha Ellis. The cutout drawing is made from light brown plywood. The drawing consists of four snowdrop flowers and their leaves which overlap each other. The cutout drawing is mounted to the wall with a gap behind it so you cna see some shadows being cast.


Hand cut Birch Plywood which is mounted off the wall casting shadows behind.

80/120cm or 31/47''


The drawing is unframed and mounted directly on to the wall using specialist hanging blocks. Blocks and screws are provided.

This photp shows an electric jigsaw resting on a sheet of plywood. There are sections of the wood which have already been cut away to create the snowdrop drawing in Martha Ellis's studio.
This is a zoomed in photo of Martha Ellis' hand cut drawing 'Snowdrops - one' and shows the edge of the drawing. As it is cut from plywood you can see all the layers which make up the wood. You can also see shaows cast behind on to the wall.
This is a zoomed in section showing one snowdrop flower from the hand cut drawing by Martha Ellis The snowdrop has been cut from plywood and the gaps which habe been cut away cast shaows onto the wll behind.
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