Richard Webb — Artist and Designer
I studied art and graphic design at the Cheshire School of Art and graduated in 1986. Since then I have worked for over 35 years within the advertising sector and creative industries, initially as a designer, then progressing to art director and creative director.
Illustration had aways been a passion of mine and an area I wanted to develop commercially. So, after a period of developing my hand cut style I launched Hand cut Originals in 2014.
Based in Worcester, UK, I mainly divide my time between the art and working as a freelance designer. I sell my art via arts markets and my website in the main, but also through exhibitions, retail outlets and private commissions. I have also demonstrated my craft to arts groups and I now offer workshops from my studio.
I also have an association with local arts charity ‘Severn Arts’ for whom I have curated a number of exhibitions. ‘Voices and Visions’ a schools and colleges art exhibition is currently running in Worcester Cathedral and is well worth a visit!.
My hand cut style is infused with many influences, including lino and wood cut and retrospective styles like Art Deco for example. Invariably, my experience in design and branding has gone some way to influence the bold simplicity which is indicative of my style.
Although hand cut paper is intrinsic to my style, it also bridges collage and mixed media. Card and paper is used in the majority of my work, but as my style continues to evolve I have explored different materials, like flame-painted and burnished sheet copper for example.
Inspiration for my work typically comes from nature and fauna with a particular affection for my local Worcestershire and Herefordshire countryside. As my style has evolved I have also explored other subject matter like popular and music culture for instance.
Each design starts with a sketch which forms the basis for a template and which in turn creates a guide to cut from. Every picture is cut out completely by hand with my ‘trusty’ scalpel which makes every picture completely unique and original!
The basis of the process involves cutting each layer from a separate piece of coloured paper, card or other material. Typically, the black layer creates the outline or framework to the composition, this is then combined with the other layers using adhesive. I often refer to the comparison of a stained glass window and its construction as a simplistic way of explaining how I create my work in a similar way.
Many of my designs allow varying degrees of customisation in terms of format and the use of alternative colour ways and materials. This helps me to evolve my themes and it also allows me to tailor pictures to customers specific requirements when required.
I am very much a ‘newbie’ to open Studios and I look forward to welcoming visitors to my studio in August. The kettle will be on!www.handcutoriginals.co.uk