“There are painters who transform the sun to a yellow spot, but there are others who with the help of their art and their intelligence, transform a yellow spot into sun” Pablo Picasso

For my 3D art piece I was really unsure of what to do. I thought about using the penguin I had created in my 3D workshop but I wanted to take a risk and do something different that would make my piece stand out.

Whilst creating a still life, I thought about using tea and how tea makes us happy as one of my starting points. However I felt this was similar to something another classmate had done and I wanted to make mine different. I thought about other joyful objects and in my still life I had a book. I realised that books have had a big impact on my life and make me the person I am today. Thinking back I remember seeing books and people transforming books by making the story literally come to life between the pages.

Before doing any research I started to mix the idea of the teacup and the book together to show the quote “You can never get a cup of tea large enough or a book long enough to suit me.” C.S Lewis. I thought this was interesting and wondered if I could create a representative piece of art. Here are a few designs I came up with.

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My lazer cutter experimentation was based on the basic design for my teacup. I wanted to use paper and see what effect that had when lazer cut. I’d seen examples but when I had done it, I fell instantly in love with the technique. I created a butterfly and I knew whatever outcome I had, I wanted to use this intricate design in it!

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I started doing some research on the transformation of a book and came across these examples.


Source: http://www.westsidebooks.com/




Source -Transformation of a book : http://wetcanvas.deviantart.com


Source :http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/picturegalleries/picturesoftheday/5824979/Pictures-of-the-day-14-July-2009.html?image=20

In particular I loved the designs of the wetcanvas blogger on deviantart, I found her work stood out for me and although her designs were simple they were creating with such elegance and precise forms that they looked good and made me personally want to explore all of her art.  I loved her use of different images and also colour and light to enhance her projects. Her commissions for Parisian jewellery designer Morphée were something that inspired me because these are the kind of projects that I would like to be able to do on commission. She really makes me want to put my art out there and profit from it.  I can say that she is the main inspiration on my project.

I decided to take the risk and transform a book. I fell so in love with the idea of book transformation that I was really excited and motivated for this project. I started to think about what book I wanted to use. I finally thought about using Alice in Wonderland, this book has a really personal connection for me and I love the story. I figured out what I would need and what part of the book I wanted to construct. I decided in the end that I wanted to create a general scene of wonderland adding in different aspects of the book.

Here are some of my rough designs and scribbles which show my thought process for my sculpture.

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I looked elsewhere for inspiration as well. The two main sources were the Tim Burton version of Alice In Wonderland and a Vogue photoshoot.

I love the animation of Burton’s movie and the way in which he has created his own wonderland. Every scene of his film has a different look and I think the scenes add to the film as much as the quirky characters. I took the arch from the proposal scene near the beginning of the film because I love the way it looked in the garden and the architectural structure of it. I wanted this to be featured in my personal design of wonderland.

MV5BMTMwNjAxMTc0Nl5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTcwODc3ODk5Mg@@._V1_SY317_CR0,0,214,317_ screen-shot-2013-06-23-at-5-18-36-pm

Source : http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1014759/

Source : http://alicewandering.com/2013/06/23/what-to-do-when-youre-the-last-girl-standing/

I also looked at a collection of Annie Leibovitz photos. She is an American photographer who does portrait photography, notably of fairytale characters. I found she did a shoot for Alice in Wonderland for Vogue in 2003 which I felt really captured the story itself in a more modern day setting. The photos show off not only the clothes but the beautiful set around them which for me is just as inspiring.I really loved how each photo had been based off a quote and I loved that a lot of famous people where shown in the photos as well. This photography manages to promote fashion in an attention grabbing manner. I would love to use this artist again to inspire my photography.

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Source all photos : http://leluxemannequin.blogspot.co.uk/2012/12/alice-in-wonderland-by-annie-leibovitz.html

I ordered two copies of Alice in Wonderland off the internet and decided to start constructing some ideas whist I was waiting for them to arrive. I knew in my piece somewhere I wanted to have a rose so I went about thinking the logistics of creating this. I looked briefly and tried my hand at origami, however its easier said then done, this was as far as I got with my rose before I could not understand what to do and realised if I wanted to do origami I should have started to learn about this art earlier.

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I thought about how to construct all the different aspects of my design for my book and figured out I needed wire to create the free standing objects as a form of support. I went to the art shop in search of materials, only to be disappointed to find out the did not have any wire. I knew I could always use a straw to support my mushroom idea so I was not too worried, just more motivated to find a solution.

In terms of using the lazer cutter, I wanted to create a delicate wedding arch in the middle of the page so I needed to create each side of that and knowing that they all needed to be the same dimensions, I thought the best way to create it would be on the lazer cutter. I also wanted to have a playing card to paint my rose and a small doorway. These would all be cut out in card for support and then cover in book to continue the effect.

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When the book arrived I started to create my piece. I decided to manipulate the paper to make the rose and cut out some rose petal shapes which made it turn out surprisingly well. Happy with my design and placement of the rose I went ahead and stuck it on the book. I then looked at doing my card man. The lazer cutter was not as successful as I hoped and put me at a bit of a dead end. On a flatmates visit to my room she gave me the idea of putting the card as a playing card and getting rid of the arm and leg remains. This made it a lot more clean cut and I then put it in my rose. This placement worked well and I chose to keep it.

The hardest part of the design was in fact the arch. Even though the pieces were easy to cut out with the lazer cutter, applying the book paper and creating the form were a nightmare. It took a mixture of PVA glue and pritt stick before everything looked stable and pleasing. I did not have an initial plan for the roof, I just sat and created it from scratch. I knew I wanted the butterflies on my piece but I did not know where. I placed them in a few places, experimenting with what looked good. I finally decided to put them on the arch, they looked aesthetically pleasing and stood out in my design.

When I had got to this point, time really was not on my side. By the time the books arrived and I’d constructed all of my work I was running on a tight schedule. I then took elements from the Mad Hatter’s Tea Party and put them on the other side of my work, replacing the idea of the mushrooms. The cake was constructed from many layers of toilet roll and cardboard.

Last of all, I put in a small Alice I had cut out the book, I felt this really added to the overall presentation of my work and I had finally come out with something I was very happy with. Although I had my difficulties on the way I am incredibly happy with my outcome and what I have created. I’m glad I took the risk and I really think it payed off. I would love to do another one of these because I found it a joy to create. I want that joy to be transmitted when people look at my piece. In the end I chose not to put in the door, purely because I felt it would ruin my design and I did not feel it was needed to complete the piece.

Here is my final piece:

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Research Photo Sources:





Annie Leibovitz for Vogue :



Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland : 



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