The artist

Welcome! My name is Ella; I’m a self-taught artist based in Leeds, England. I turn the delicate medium of paper into atmospheric art. My preferred colour palette for my work is monochrome, in contrast to my bright wardrobe.

As a child I used to hand make cards, and always write on the back ‘copyright of Aurora Designs’. Well, designs became art, and Aurora is not just my middle name, but also connects with the play of light and dark within my pieces. At dawn (Latin= Aurora), and seeing the Aurora Borealis, there’s an awe at the wonderful world around us, at the juxtaposition of light and shadows, and at the hope of change.


I began using paper as a medium back in 2016, when my friend, Jess, showed me an example and suggested we have a go. With hesitant slices at first, I wasn’t sure I’d be able to make a basic shape let alone anything more… However, it quickly became the art form for me, and over time I developed my preferences for black paper (particularly So Silk), and for translating the monuments and environments of architecture and cityscapes into papercuts. Over time my distinct style has evolved and emerged.

What is paper cut art?

Paper cutting is an historical and intimate art form. In China it’s jianzhi; in Japan kirie; in Germany scherenschnitt. Paper cutters work with their hands and a few tools, using one of the most delicate materials. It requires patience and care and dedication.

My tools and workspace

I cut by hand using a craft knife and get through more surgically sharp blades than you’d think. Other than this it’s a camera, pencil, pens, paper, a glass cutting mat (kitchen table top savers are great!), and lamps to make sure I can see the detail clearly.

9 + 8 =