25 Amazing Papercut Artists

Today Design*Sponge is almost entirely¬†devoted to paper crafts. Coming up, we’ve got two interviews with artists who specialize in the classic paper techniques of marbling and paper cutting, as well as two paper-based DIY projects, a roundup of marbled design goods and an in-depth look at the history of marbling. To kick things off, I thought I’d share 25 of my favorite artists who create incredible cut paper designs. I narrowed this list to 25, but my full Pinterest research board (I love using those secret boards for my initial research) of 40+ papercut designs is right here if you need a little more inspiration. xo, grace

Image above by Elsa Mora

Yuko Yamamoto

Elsa Mora (Etsy shop here)

More papercut designs after the jump . . .

Mia Pearlman

Hina Aoyama

Karen Bit Vejle

Sharon Arnold

Bovey Lee

Jaq Belcher

Annie Vought

Kako Ueda

Georgia Russell

Xin Song

Amy Flurry and Nikki Nye of Paper-Cut-Project

Lisa Rodden

Peter Callesen

Jen Stark

Yulia Brodskaya

Donna Ruff

Julene Harrison

Rob Ryan

Anne ten Donkelaar

Sarah Dennis

Jonathan of Mr Yen*

*Stay tuned for an interview with Jonathan next!

Elod Beregszazi

Suzy Taylor (Etsy Shop here)

Naomi of Woodland Papercuts (Etsy shop here)

Emily of Bird Mafia

Nomadic D.

These are amazing! Mind-blowing, really! Now I’m going to have to sift through and inspect each one carefully, the amount of detail is insane! There goes my lunch hour…

Lydia Kuekes

I love love love these. I actually made one last year for my husband (first anniversary! paper!!) similar to the style of Julene Harrison, with our names, our wedding date, and a graphic representation of a barn and a 2-seater bike (wedding details). It’s tiny, just 5″x5″ but it took forever to design and a lot of patience to cut out. I am awed by the complexity of these, what a testament to the patience and attention to detail of these artists! Amazing work.

ri gal

Blown away!!
That’s it! I’m delving right into all my to do paper-cut projects, right after the crazy chemistry exam tomorrow!
Oh my god! These artists are amazing!
And Hello Jonthan Chapman! :)

Karen Phelps

How absolutely stunning these are! This is something I must learn, it’s too beautiful not to try.


Great Post! You should check out local Brooklyn paper artist Thomas Witte too: http://thomaswitteart.com/ He was is a group show with Hina Aoyama last year at the Christopher Henry Gallery. Interesting work!

Amy Flurry

We are SO PROUD to be mentioned in this mix of amazing artists. Thank you Grace, for including Paper-Cut-Project!


I am so impressed by people who can hold their hands steady enough to do this! Not to mention the patience and focus needed. It is absolutely amazing!

Lauren Virginia

I don’t know the whole story but Mr. Yen’s work looks a little too much like that of Rob Ryan, who has been making similar cut-outs for much longer… I suspect some amount of appropriation there.

Grace Bonney


I have to say I disagree. There are several paper cut artists whose work looks much more like Rob’s, to me. That said, I think Rob spear-headed a movement that has inspired an overall trend in paper cutting to include longer written pieces that feel like framed poems, etc. To me, Jonathan’s work is less about the long pieces of writing and more about shapes and decorative compositions.


Jill Simpson

I think I died and went to paper heaven today! Thank you for this beautiful assemblage with many favorites and so many artists that are new to me, like Donna Ruff. I would second the nomination of Su Blackwell, one of my faves!


Lovely post. So glad to see Rob Ryan mentioned here. He is one of my all time favorite artists and I totally agree with you Grace… His work is like poetry. The message is always so sweet and thoughtful.

Tamzin Forster

This is great – so inspirational. There was recently an exhibition at Manchester Art Gallery (UK) ‘The First Cut’ dedicated to paper cut artists – it was great to be able to see so many diverse pieces in one place – just like here with your piece. I recently created a animated paper cut music video – using paper and light/shadow….http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SoduwSAzEvE


Absolutely mind blowing. I love the multi-colored pieces, especially the old man with the birds. So beautiful and creative.


I ran into works by Peter Callesen a few years back and was totally wowed!! The ones you show here are simple compared to his more amazing works esp like the bird…people appearing to rise from a simple cutout…all should check him out further for truly inspired works! But I am also amazed by other artists you showed…such patience! Thanks for a look at many and thanks to the commenters for even more!


I have a print of that first Elsa Mora paper cut (girl with a cats on her skipping rope!) that I bought years ago. It is a beautiful print – the black is so deep and rich it looks like it would feel velvety if you touch it! I recommend her prints and would buy again.


amazing, beyond any words I can think of!
It just occurred to me whether some, or all, of those extremely skillful hands have properly insured….

MiMi Jupina Kretzu

Absolutely BEAUTIFUL. I love this form of Art. A snip snip here, a snip snip there with amazing results. Thank you to the Artists for your kind hands and patience. I have been reintroduced to the Art. Thank you.


Sarah Dennis is definitely my favourite! her recent piece with the flamingos is simply stunning

Ramani Mathew

Good enough to be exhibited in a museum and to be collected! WOW!!


Really great to see a feature on papercut artwork. Some new artists I am not so familiar with too. I agree with those who’ve mentioned Su Blackwell. I’m also a fan of Emily Hogarth’s work. I also love a bit of paper cutting myself- have a look at my blog http://www.clarekellypapercuts.blogspot.com


A really great group of papercut artists! Their work is truly inspiring and the varying types of work in the cut paper medium is exciting. Have you seen Gestalten’s ‘Papercraft’ and ‘Papercraft II’ books? There are so many artists revolutionizing the medium!

Tami Komai

look up marianne vogler and tami komai in internet to see works that are exciting and different than what you show here. Both reside near Basel,Switzerland .


Wow! Wow!! Wow!!! This is the first time I’m hearing about paper art but I’m hooked already. How and where can I learn to do this? Gosh!


I am so overwhelmed by the number of amazing artists in the paper cutting world.

I met Nahoko Kojima a few weeks ago and signed up for her workshop after I viewed her work in person and now I’m addicted. I didn’t realise there was such a large community of paper cutters in existence. Thank you everyone for sharing your favourites, I will look them all up.

My favourite paper cutter is still Naho. She has a new work exhibiting next month in London if you haven’t seen her work. Keep your eyes peeled for this one.


Heather Clements has some pretty outstanding work as well. Here is her flickr, which has some of her other work besides her paper cuts. It’s gorgeous.

Sudha Shivshankar

Absolutely amazing collection. I would love to learn this art and will be extremely delighted if anyone could teach me. I live in Chennai, India. Even online classes are fine. Classes in person would be excellent. Thank you in advance.

Christine Thomson ( The Papercut Artist)

Love these! I try to ‘draw’ but in papercut . I use laser cutting and I would be interested in hearing comments re relative merits of hand v laser:
I actually prefer the lines – not as angular. and means I can offer personalisation :each customised papercut can be produced as an original but not as expensive as a hand-cut original. Villages, towns, iconic historical figures, Rabbie Burns CR Mackintosh. Keep cutting – or lasering!:)

Louise Firchau

One day….one day I’ll figure out how to get my images off Facebook and onto Google ;) Nice to see some of my friends included here!
Paper Panda xx

Donna Ruff

Thank you so much for including me with this amazing group of artists. I want to comment briefly on laser vs. hand cutting. I prefer doing my work by hand, because the little over-cuts that result keep the work from being perfect- and although cutting patterns is repetitive work, it becomes my own mark, not from a computer file. That being said, I’ve experimented with doing some stuff by laser too- as it enables me to make many works from the same pattern. There are things the laser can do that I can’t- like very tiny text for instance. When I’m cutting the newspaper pages, I’m always thinking about what to leave and what to cut away.


hi, i just love these designs.i also want to create some.i never tried this type of art till now.but now i am gonna try this.thank all of you to inspire me.

laura emerick

I can’t believe you forgot Paper panda! She is amazing! Glad to see you got Suzy Taylor in there though, finest british art :)