Cut Paper 3D Models - Norman Von Schmeling

There are few things I enjoy more than coming across an emerging artist whose work hasn't been widely seen around the interwebs yet. Case in point, Norman Von Schmeling of Nonitt, based in Geneva, Switzerland, creates remarkable cut paper objects entirely by hand. I noticed his work on Instagram (are you sensing a pattern? I keep featuring people I've met there!) and was amazed to learn that Norman has been concentrating on paper cutting for just 13 months. His gift for recognizing spatial relations pairs perfectly with a steady hand.

Dimensional Cut Paper Jack Daniel's Bottle by Norman Von Schmeling

Norman's first step in making a cut paper model is to hand-draw a template. He cuts the design from a single sheet of satin white 160 gr paper using a Swan Morton scalpel with a #11 blade, creases the folds, and applies 3M Scotch invisible glue with the aid of toothpicks.

Cut Paper Jack Daniel's Bottle by Norman Von Schmeling - Detail

Norman used a plastic ruler at first, but now relies on metal ones in different sizes and thicknesses. Bottles are a common theme and are often created to scale.

Dimensional Cut Paper Heineken Bottle by Norman Von Schmeling

Depending on the complexity of a subject, each piece takes an average of 40 to 50 hours to complete. Norman prefers to create a specific design only once before moving on to a new challenge.

Dimensional Cut Paper Skull by Norman Von Schmeling

He created this paper skull in the style of paper cutter Kristine Braanen of Norway whose Instagram account was one of the first he followed.

Dimensional Cut Paper Diamond by Norman Von Schmeling
Norman's first commissioned project

He credits Kristine with motivating him to improve his work and to create complex paper sculptures.  

I love triangles and her style is amazing; it requires a lot of precision and work. A big thanks to her. I worked on the skull for a long time, and as always, I wasn't sure if my calculations would be correct.

Cut Paper Diamond with Heart by Norman Von Schmeling

Two months after completing the first paper diamond, the ante was upped when Norman positioned a dimensional heart inside a golden diamond as another commissioned piece.

Dimensional Cut Paper Bicycle by Norman Von Schmeling

He even created a birthday cake to celebrate his most recent birthday. Below it is the intricate template.

Dimensional Cut Paper Birthday Cake by Norman Von Schmeling

Cut Paper Birthday Cake Template by Norman Von Schmeling

Tell us a bit about yourself and your interest in paper cutting.

I'm 24 and I started paper cutting about one year ago. In the beginning it was just small pieces like cubes, triangles and various shapes. The reason I started to cut paper was first because I wanted to create an original gift for a girl to impress her, secondly I had no money at that time... just a cardboard, some standard paper and a cutter. Since then I have never stopped as I have an easiness to turn 2D into 3D. My inspirations come from TV commercials, brands, advertising and movies.

Dimensional Cut Paper Canonet Canon AL-17 by Norman Von Schmeling

How do you envision your future?

For the moment I'm doing paper cutting as a hobby, but I really want to turn it into full-time employment. I plan to open an Etsy shop where I will sell unique pieces created especially for it. My intention is to open the shop when I reach 1000 followers on Instagram. I would also like to make my own exhibition, as well as add tutorials and videos to my website.

3D Cut Paper Milk Bottle by Norman Von Schmeling

Your shop is bound to open soon as you are in the 900s on IG at the moment! I think the way you engage followers is impressive - for example, this golden ring was offered as a giveaway to celebrate a year of paper cutting, not to mention you and Kristine recently launched The Paper Artist Collective where a new artist is featured weekly.

Dimensional Cut Paper Ring by Norman Von Schmeling

Here is Norman's newest template, currently in the assembly stage... can you picture what it will be?

Cut Paper Model Template by Norman Von Schmeling

Follow along with Norman Von Schmeling on Instagram and Facebook to see the result as soon as it is completed. 

Norman Von Schmeling with 3D Paper Skull

Ann Martin
Ann Martin

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  1. Remarkable! What talent! I wish you success as you continue your amazing creativity.

  2. Amazing! It is more amazing that he cuts by hand, unbelievable.

  3. His work is crazy cool! I've been lurking on Instagram more fun than Pinterest at the moment! I haven't looked at a blog in ages, I've missed you! Good news is that now I can binge-read your posts!!!!

    1. So nice to hear from you again, Kim! I've missed you too. Love, love, love IG. Let me know if you join so I can follow along with what you're up to these days.


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