Introducing Glasgow based Paper artist Laura Sayers

Introducing Glasgow based Laura Sayers, her intricate pieces are all made meticulously from different layers of paper, cut with scissors and finished with finely painted details. These are then photographed and edited for reproduction, providing a final print that has depth, texture and a novelty charm. Through pairing her distinctive style with her own writing and creating bold images often on a miniature scale, Laura's portfolio explores many themes including childhood, faith, location and personalities.

She's part of the Paper Artist Collective, a featured partner of Not on the High Street, and is now represented by us! Illo Agency

And there’s so many o interesting facts about Laura in our Q&A below …

When did you start illustrating?

I spent a lot of my childhood copying the illustrations from my favourite books and doodling over anything and everything, so I've been drawing for as long as I can remember but it wasn't until I was in high school that I started working with paper and considering illustration as the route to take it down.

Who has been the most supportive in your illustration career, perhaps your teacher, family, friends?
I don't think I can pin it down to one person! I feel very grateful to have my family, boyfriend and close friends who all just 'get' my work. When you spend a lot of your life explaining what you do to other people who sometimes can't really get their heads around it, it makes all the difference to know that they understand my process, they believe in me and they're always there for honest feedback.

Did you always think art was something that was going to be a major part of your life?

Pretty much - it does get to a point where you can't really imagine doing anything else because it's so all consuming! Like I said, I loved art as a kid and I think I always had my sights set on doing something creative... for quite a while when I was a teenager I wanted to be a prosthetics makeup artist for fantasy films but it wasn't meant to be!

What is your favourite subject matter to illustrate?
I love making characters and telling their stories. You can see so many details in a person, from lines on their face to the clothes they choose to wear, and I find observing these things and trying to capture a person such a fascinating process.

How would you describe your style?

I make everything out of paper so my illustrations end up focussing mainly on colour, shape and often pattern. Details are quite key to my way of working and I often make things hard for myself by working on a small scale, but I enjoy the challenge and the satisfaction of being able to hold a physical finished piece in your hands.

What is your favourite collaboration to date?
I worked on a double page spread for a lovely kids magazine called Bravery which involved making lots of the prolific architect Zaha Hadid's amazing buildings. It wasn’t a huge project but I think I enjoyed it so much because the team were really clear with what they wanted, I got to research something I didn't know a lot about (which also involved going for a swim in the Olympic pool designed by Hadid in Stratford for a bit of fun) and I got to involve some graphic design which I always love doing; it's pretty pleasing seeing your images work in harmony with the text when you get it right.

What interested you about being represented by Illo Agency?
Like I said before about folk just 'getting' my work, when I met with Amy I really felt like she could see so many avenues for it to go down; more than I could imagine myself! I think that's what you want from an agent - someone who propels your work into new places.

Do you have a favourite author, film director, or designer?
I think Jon Klassen's books are so simple but utterly genius. To go along with my millenial stereotype I will never not love and film that Greta Gerwig makes, and I've recently become a bit obsessed with Christoph Neiman's design and illustration work after watching his Abstract episode on Netflix about 15 times.

Are you working on any personal projects you can share with us?
I'm wanting to start illustrating a few favourite recipes using a paper cut pattern style that I've been dabbling in. I think if there's anything good that's come out of this quarantine for me it's having the time to experiment with food a bit more, so I want that to feed into my work (I promise I didn't intend for that to be a pun...)

Do you listen to podcasts? If so, do you have a favourite?

Yes, all the time! I'm going through all the Guardian Audio Longreads which cover such a breadth of topics; my favourite so far has been about how to spot fake works of art as a forgery detective - maybe that's what I'd do if I wasn't an illustrator...

If you have something in mind for Laura, please contact her agent: [email protected]
at illo agency we pride ourselves in representing a collation of global illustrators, distinctly diverse in creativity and uniquely celebrated by like-minded clients across a range of commercial markets.