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Most people who have a fondness for Japan have encountered origami at one point or another. It’s certainly one of the most famous of the Japanese paper arts and the origami crane carries so much more meaning than a simple piece of paper.

Another Japanese art that utilizes the complexities of paper is kirie, or paper cutting art. All it takes is a craft knife, a little dedication and free time and you can turn a black piece of paper into a stand-out work of art. Looking for a new hobby this winter vacation? Look no further than kirie!

Mentions of kirie date back to even before the Nara Period and used in ceremonies for the different Japanese gods. Nowadays though, it’s a craft/hobby with fans around the world. It’s pretty easy to see how kirie has become popular nowadays, as kirie projects are just calling to you whenever you open any manga.

One Japanese Internet user has shared her works online with the simple title of “Had a craft knife and some time, so I decided to learn kirie.” The results are pretty awesome.

The incredibly talented artist only started kirie two years ago, and she has already produced some really amazing and intricate pieces of art.

A little Hatsune Miku and one of the first kirie the artist made.

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Other earlier work. It’s so cute! 

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The complexities of figuring out where to cut sometimes lead to mistakes.

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Not limited to just anime characters either.

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You can hunt some monsters this way as well.

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Final Fantasy X-2 Yuna 

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She doesn’t stop with just Hatsune Miku, here’s Luka!

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Taking time with The Beatles

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Gintama would make a heck of a greeting card.

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Old Snake still makes a Solid Snake.

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Not satisfied with simple black outlines, the artist also decided to add some color to her work. At first glance it might look like she mounted the kirie and then painted inside of it.

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However, upon closer inspection, you can tell it’s actually more cut paper! Even the shadows have been meticulously cut out and added to the art in order to give it that unbelievable depth.

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Here she is adding hair accessories to an already completed head profile.

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A colored version of Luka.

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▼How does she end up with this?

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Here are some in-progress shots so you can see just how detailed the work is.

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A colored version of Yuna.

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Whether these pictures intimidate you into never picking up a craft knife, or inspire you head to the arts and craft store, we can all appreciate the beauty and effort that went into them.

Source: Hamsoku
Images: Imgur, Hamsoku