Leaf-carving: complicated, high-skill kitsch

Discuss

34 Responses to “Leaf-carving: complicated, high-skill kitsch”

  1. Dave Faris says:

    They say that the leaf carving is done by hand, with no printing or painting involved. Are you sure? Seems like a trivial thing to do with some sort of screen and mild acid or something.

  2. tylerkaraszewski says:

    Yeah, it’d obviously be a lot better if the subject matter was infeasible pseudo-victorian steam-powered machines, or video game characters.

    • JamesMason says:

      Seconding tyler – I find it hard to see a meaningful distinction between this subject matter and naked chicks with monkeys, or anything that is “steampunk”…

  3. Anonymous says:

    And what, *exactly* ,is wrong with airbrushed van-art?

  4. Cowicide says:

    Unfortunately, most of the subject matter seems to be somewhere on the kitsch scale between sheet-cake inkjet printing and airbrush van-art.

    There’s some gems in the bunch like here.

    Maybe they all need more skulls and stuff? ;D

  5. TheSpaghettiman says:

    I once saw a series of leaf carvings of various communist leaders.

  6. kib says:

    The “making procedures” PDF linked on their page outlines the steps but doesn’t exactly go into great detail. I don’t think I’m giving away any artisan secrets when I reveal that Step 4 is “Carve the leaf”.

  7. quitterjunior says:

    The gauntlet has been thrown…this leaf shall be shooped (with clever little knives).

  8. ZippySpincycle says:

    Wow–the headline nails it. Exceptional effort in the service of the exceptionally banal.

  9. Shelby Davis says:

    Say what? You guys, this is beautiful! I really don’t even see how this qualifies as kitsch. Seriously.

  10. porp says:

    If you don’t like the Velveteen Rabbit, maybe think of it as an exercise of irony in spending far too much physical dexterity, natural talent, and time in making these – in potentia ephemeral – physical things of no cultural significance.

  11. blurgh says:

    Sadly, I am no longer able to tell the difference between kitsch and the fine art that boingboing regularly pimps.

  12. Andy Rofl says:

    It’s interesting that they can so easily mass-produce the same image.

  13. Egypt Urnash says:

    I just saw a friend’s design for a sheet-cake picture of Peach domming Mario. Is that kitschy or edgey? Does the fact that it’s for a bachelorette party make it more one or the other?

    ’cause the leaf you chose to highlight is pretty awesome in a Hillary Knight/Arthur Rackham kind of way.

  14. Atrum says:

    Holy. Freaking. Crap. Who even thinks to do something like that?

    • TimDrew says:

      Ultra-fine (carved and /or gilded) leaf calligraphy is a long tradition in Islamic art (from Turkey, I think); there’s some amazing stuff out there (the choice of a leaf as the medium resonates with meaning as well- relating to the universal fractal structures living beings carry within them as a microcosm).

      In contrast to the subject matter here (mad carving skills aside, of course).

  15. ekkia says:

    Even worse than the Eiffel Tower made with toothpicks.

    • Pantograph says:

      You know, for a second I thought that it was a portrait of Pee Wee Herman. Then I realized why they put the Obama picture next to it.

  16. Lobster says:

    There are a great many people who are creative but unskilled. There are a great many people who are skilled but uncreative. There are precious few who are both creative and skilled, and they’re the people we tend to hear about.

    • Cowicide says:

      There are a great many people who are creative but unskilled. There are a great many people who are skilled but uncreative. There are precious few who are both creative and skilled, and they’re the people we tend to hear about.

      And sometimes we hear about these leaf carvers.

  17. isaacb2 says:

    I’ve been cutting up comic books for my papercutting art and showing all over SoCal, and I can’t get picked up here… but someone starts cutting bunnies into leaves and that shows up here? Sigh. All I want is to be loved.

  18. Anonymous says:

    Kitsch? I beg to differ. The Velveteen Rabbit is a deeply beloved classic.

  19. Chrs says:

    Man, they do have some not-so-excellent stuff. Recommendation: Needs More Frazetta.

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