Guest post by Kate Myerscough
A work of art itself, Tiffanie Turner’s book on making lifelike botanical sculptures from crepe paper, titled The Fine Art of Paper Flowers, depicts the artwork she is known for. Based in San Francisco, Turner specialises in the creation of realistic paper flowers, exploring the rhythms and patterns in nature as well as the missteps which make each flower unique.
The Fine Art of Paper Flowers aims to pass on these skills and philosophies – and is comprehensive in doing so. Part guide / part inspiration, the photography of the finished pieces emulates 15th and 16th century Dutch masters with carefully arranged blooms on moody backgrounds.
The book takes you through the process of creating the botanicals step-by-step, from which tools and materials to use to basic techniques for flowers, leaves and stems. However, the tutorials also focus on the details that are important to Turner, the most important of which is the realistic portrayal of the flower, and so using all of the irregularities that nature provides. The instructions cover ‘grooming’ the petals in the correct way, crumpling or stretching so that they each appear as they would in real life.
Covering all kinds of blooms from Turner’s favourite roses to the humble dandelion, she also discusses their use in crowns and headpieces. There are some beautiful arrangements included that have the capacity to improve any outfit – providing you manage to make them as Turner does, which will be the test of this book. For all of its loveliness, is it actually easy to create these sculptures?
The lusciousness of the photography coupled with the comprehensiveness of the instructions make this a book that inspires creation in crepe. You will leave it itching for a giant peony to fill your wall or delicate daisy chain to string around your neck. Turner successfully transforms the beauty of painted flowers into new 3D creations, and this book provides a generous insight into her finely tuned skills.
The Fine Art of Paper Flowers: A Guide to Making Beautiful and Lifelike Botanicals by Tiffanie Turner
Published by Watson-Guptill, September 2017, ISBN 9780399578373