Paper Quilled Roaring Lion

On January 7, 2017, I finished my first truly elaborate piece: Paper Quilled Roaring Lion. It was a labor of love – taking me well over forty hours to complete. I worked on it obsessively throughout much of my Christmas vacation. I remember the rush I felt when I placed the final quill. It was amazing and blissful and nearly orgasmic.

I debated whether to include photos from all the angles on this post and decided not to. The finished product is so special that I don’t think it matters whether you see if from the left or right or even understand how I blended the layers. Besides, this is one of my signature pieces, so a little mystery is necessary, right?

Paper Quilled Roaring Lion
Paper Quilled Roaring Lion

Creating this lion set of a frenzy of creation that when I look back upon now, am truly blown away by. I cannot believe I banged out so many epic pieces over the first six months of 2017, culminating in a coveted commission by ULTA Beauty that summer.

The image below is one of him being held in my hand to give you a better sense of his true size.

Note

Do you see the big flaw in the original construction? When I originally created this lion I wasn’t paying attention to whether or not his eyeballs were level with each other and as a result, the finished product had a serious case of bug eye! A few months later I very carefully (and with terror that I’d ruin him) removed and reset the entire eye area so that they were level. Now that was a feat and one I was loathe to do. But with both his eyes where they should be, he is that much more handsome.

Techniques

To start with, this lion was created in three distinct phases and in three distinct layers. I did this to create a real sense of depth (noticeable moreso in person) from the front of his face towards his mane. His nose and the area around his eyes is actually set on top of the layer that includes his mane and ears. I have used c-scrolls to blend the two layers together.

I used a combination of regular paper, gilded paper, and cardstock strips. The cardstock was from Little Circles, some of the regular strips came from a combination of Little Circles and Quilled Creations, and the gilded paper was imported from JJ Quilling in the UK.

Even though this gorgeous beast is part of my personal collection and I can’t think of a reason to ever part with him, I have digitally mastered his photo and offer it as an 8×10 art print on my Etsy shop. It’s the next best thing to owning him. The photograph is highly detailed and looks beautiful framed.



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