Arts·Q&A

This month's logo design is a 'cut' above the rest. Meet paper artist Sam Heidinger

From Sailor Moon to CBC, pop culture is a major inspiration to the Calgary artist.

From Sailor Moon to CBC, pop culture is a major inspiration to the Calgary artist

March's CBC Arts logo by Sam Heidinger. (Sam Heidinger)

Every month, we feature a new take on the CBC Arts logo created by a Canadian artist. Check out our previous logos!

"I've heard people refer to paper-cutting as drawing with a knife," says Sam Heidinger, "which is a pretty apt way of describing the process!" And when our cameras visited her in Calgary for an upcoming episode of Paper Cuts, Heidinger started drawing the CBC gem you see before you.

Gorgeous, right? How could we not invite her to do this month's logo?! Keep your eye on the website, 'cause that episode of Paper Cuts will be out later this month. While we wait, get to know all about her.

Detail of March's CBC Arts logo by Sam Heidinger. (Sam Heidinger)

Name: Sam Heidinger

Age: 33

Homebase: Calgary

Let's talk about your design! What inspired you to draw the CBC Arts logo?

The CBC logo is such an iconic piece of Canadian design that I knew instantly that I wanted to take it on as my project for the CBC Arts Paper Cuts series. I was really interested to see it decked out in whimsical florals and it seems pretty fitting as we roll into spring.

I love how all sorts of different fandoms pop up in your work. Why is pop culture such an inspiration? (And is there one show/character/movie/etc. that's a bigger inspiration than the others?)

I think pop culture plays a big part in my work because I consumed so much growing up. I spent a lot of time watching my brother play video games before playing them myself, and I found games like Chrono Trigger and the Final Fantasy series to be so inspiring. I was forever trying to draw the different characters and environments while my brother played them.

However, I would say that Sailor Moon and the Animal Crossing game series have both informed my style the most. The combination of the girl power of Sailor Moon and the sheer adorability of Animal Crossing have really stayed with me

Sailor Moon-inspired paper art by Sam Heidinger. (Instagram/@catfriendo)

Alberta motifs appear in a bunch of your posts, too. Why's that?

I've never really noticed that! But when I think about it, I do like to feature a lot of florals in my art, which I can see being inspired by where I live. In Calgary we are incredibly lucky to be so close to a lot of untamed nature with the Rockies being in our backyard.

Home is where the art is. (Instagram/@catfriendo)

What's the project you're most proud of?

I've been lucky enough to be involved in quite a number of dream projects, but the one that stands out to me the most was from a few years ago, when I got to work with the Tasty Design Studio and Bandai Namco USA to create two paper-cuts as part of a social media blast for the release of Ni No Kuni II: Revenant Kingdom, a Japanese RPG. Being that I've been inspired by video games and anime for so long, this was such an unreal project to be part of.

One of the pieces Sam Heidinger made for Ni No Kuni II. (Instagram/@catfriendo)

Who is the last artist you discovered online?

I recently discovered the work of Asya Kozina, a Ukranian paper artist who creates the most amazing sculptural paper wigs that just blow my mind!

What work of art do you wish you owned?

This is where the history nerd in me comes out. There is a series of medieval heraldic tapestries woven in the early 1500s called The Lady and the Unicorn that I've always really admired. Or I'd love to own an original piece of Yoshitaka Amano art.

Where can we see more from you? Any new projects on the horizon?

I primarily post to Instagram (@catfriendo), but I'm also on Twitter (@sheids). I will also be at a few conventions in Calgary coming up in the next few months. I'll be at the Calgary Comic Expo from April 23-26 and at Calgary Otafest from May 15-17!

I started attending Calgary Expo back in 2009 as it aligns with my interests, but my first time there as an artist was only a few years ago in 2017. I was a little intimidated to apply and start selling after attending for so long, but it's truly a fantastic environment where art is really appreciated!

The Infinity Gauntlet, but make it paper. (Instagram/@catfriendo)

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