12:42PM, Thursday 07 March 2013
A striking collection of intricate paper trees displayed at the Rendezvous Cafe in Maidenhead took Emma Ryan nearly 300 hours to create.
If that fact alone doesn't impress you, you might be interested to know the 22-year-old is not a full-time artist.
She's also a qualified truck driver.
The former Cox Green School pupil is showing 22 of the images, all made using a scalpel blade, at the town hall venue in her first ever public exhibition, titled If You Go Down To The Woods Today.
"I'm really looking forward to hearing what people say about it," she said.
"When we were hanging them people were saying how nice it was to see something a bit different."
Emma first became interested in the paper-cutting technique when she saw examples of it at Windsor Contemporary Art Fair.
The Art on the Street regular decided to give it a go, using trees in winter as her inspiration.
"They were so bare and they looked quite pretty," she said.
The Lambourne Drive resident's efforts add up to more than 12 days of solid work, carried out in her free time across a three-month period.
But despite her obvious talent, the Bovilles Art Shop worker plans to pursue a different career entirely, having recently qualified as an LGV driver.
Emma began driving lorries while working for Carters Steam Fair; a firm she first joined as a sign-painting apprentice aged 17.
Her mum is also a lorry driver.
"The people in the industry are lovely," she said.
While she admits it seems an 'odd step', Emma explained the skills involved in the two interests aren't as different as people might think.
"You can't let your concentration lapse with the paper cutting because you might cut a finger off, and if you don't concentrate on lorry driving you could cut a corner or hit a car," she added.
Emma's exhibition runs at the Rendezvous Cafe until March 28.
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