A modern-day silhouettist tells his story. Charles Burns writes about his explorations into the art and history of silhouette. His mission is to bring this often-overlooked art to a wider, appreciative audience.
15.02.2020 by Charles Burns
I heard about Inger Eidem long before I knew her name. Whilst cutting silhouettes at events I'd occasionally meet people who'd tell me about silhouettes they had done in their childhood. Apparently the artist cut through two pieces of paper at the same time, one of which became a portrait and the other a caricature. Wait, what?! Is that even possible?
11.12.2019 by Charles Burns
As an artist interested in science I'm aways fascinated by weird pseudo-scientific ideas of the past, especially if they involve silhouettes. Once which caught my eye recently is the Prosopographus. In this post I'm going to take you back in time to see if it can be brought back to life. I’m looking for ideas to help me design a silhouette machine. A 200 year anniversary. I’m going to take you back exactly 200 years.
21.10.2018 by Charles Burns
After watching Silhouette Secrets, recently launched on Amazon, people often ask: what sparked my interest in silhouettes? It isn't such an easy question to answer. However, my mind often returns to this silhouette, which has been in my family for years. It may well be the first silhouette I ever saw. (more…)
09.10.2018 by Charles Burns
Our film Silhouette Secrets includes a cameo appearance by Paul Daniels. This interview - our Paul Daniels cameo - was a late addition. We were looking for a magician to talk about Dai Vernon, the celebrated father of close-up magic, who earned a living as a street silhouettist during the Great American Depression. (more…)
09.08.2018 by Charles Burns
What should a silhouettist's approach to data protection be? This question has been much on my mind recently. I'm not alone; the launch of GDPR in Europe – and the subsequent wave of reply-or-unsubscribe emails – has got everybody thinking. What kind of data do I use? For me, the question has caused me to reexamine some of my most fundamental ideas about the role of silhouettes in society. (more…)
07.06.2018 by Charles Burns
I recently came across the work of a talented silhouettist called Sarah Harrington. She was a professional silhouettist who worked during the latter part of the eighteenth century. What struck me about about her work (apart from her obvious love of hats) is that they're all cut inside-out! (more…)
10.09.2014 by Charles Burns
After visiting Houston the Silhouette Secrets film crew were invited to a lunch by SCONE. We met "Silhouette Cutters of New England" at the Wayside Inn, near Boston. We knew nothing of the Wayside Inn's history or it's connection with the art of silhouette. (more…)