A Print for the Fallen

E is for Explosion

In a continuing progress review of a joint venture with www.sarakulmanpaperplay.com I’m explaining the process that led to a limited edition image and card engineered folder.

Having cut the card on the Silver Bullet machine, sara  then set about folding it into a shape that not only contained the image but also  gave hints as to the content within. This was a cleverly considered device, meant to compliment and enhance but not to distract from the print.

The original intention was to make a complete artefact and to post it to a leading designer. so the work needed to have elegance as well as functioning as an example of combined craftsmanship.

Explosions5 Explosions6Explosions7

The red card was inserted into the inside to allow the text to be read once the card was unfolded and at the same time providing an ‘E” on the upper cover. The ingenuity of the design meant that the letter form on the front became incorporated into the overall design and an integral element.

Explosions8 Explosions9photo-5

The insertion of the print itself added the final touch and what we had were three distinct colours working in unison and providing a dynamic integration of type, card engineering and print. This was a very successful collaborative project and the end result will hopefully make an impact.

completed project

completed project


PaperPlay and the Art of Folding

E is for Explosion

The decisions were soon made, Sara used the Silver Bullet machine to practice on 220 gms paper,The idea was to find materials that would compliment the engraved image that was printed on fine Japanese paper. Sara tried a range of colours before it was decided to settle on a black folder with a red under layer. The discussion had as to what text should appear and where it would be placed led to the decision to simply label it E for Explosion. This title referred to the image but also gave it an instructional feel.on one hand it was obvious but the mood of the work called for a statement rather than a poetic or ambiguous piece of text.

Seeing the card folder develop and the design emerge really brought the work together.

Black card with E removed

Black card with E removed

Red paper with black type

Red paper with black type

Joint Venture: E for Explosion

Andrew Kulman and sarakulmanpaperplay.com join forces

E for Explosion is a collaboration demonstrating husband and wife team work. Andrew produced a series of wood engravings over Summer and asked Sara to design a folder which could contain four small engravings. The theme was explosions, inspired by Vorticist images and Paul Nash’s wood engravings of the Great War. Why explosions? Andrew  suggests that there was irony in taking something almost impossible to depict visually and engraving it in fine lines across small block of Lemon wood. What you achieve is an impression rather than anything that can be called objective.

Sara’s contribution was a series of innovative folders, using the dynamism of shapes and angles to make a visual response in card to the theme of explosion.  What originally started as a folder for four images became a folder for one particular image. The first considerations were centred on materials and colour. Particular weights of card and paper needed to be decided. One of the factors was whether the Silver bullet card cutter could handle the materials?

paper cutting machine

Sara preparing the card on the machine.

So what were the main considerations? Well firstly a project that combined both sets of skills, printmaking and paper engineering, but also a real joint venture that came together as a whole rather than two discrete aspects. Should colour appear in the print, how should it be used on the actual folder, would there need to be words, how large was the folder and how large was the edition?