Punch cutting is a form of artwork that mainly uses tin as its medium. Tin is a very soft and malleable metal that is very well suited for punch cutting. Since tin is easy to shape, adding indents or perforations to tin pieces takes little effort. Tin is also very popular for punch cutting since it does not give in to the elements easily. Rain and salt water will not rust away tin so punch cutting works of arts will remain works of arts for a long time.
To create the indents and perforations, punch cutters use special punch cutting tools to create three-dimensional perforations on the tin pieces. Most of the time, a punch cutter would use a stencil or some form of guide when working on a tin piece. This makes punch cutting easier as one can create the patterns and preview them before doing the actual cutting. Three-dimensional computer aided design software could also be used to visualize the finished tin product for those punch cutters who are computer savvy. Once the design is finalized, a stencil or guide can be printed out and used for punch cutting.
Other tools are available to punch cutting craftsmen if the computer is not an option when creating tin works of arts. Special pieces of cloths and papers can be used to test out design templates that would be used for punch cutting beforehand. The artist would shift around his punch cutter so that whatever letters or words that would be part of the final design would form properly. This design and testing process takes some time and a lot of patience. Quite a bit of artistic skill is needed too so that is why more people prefer to purchase punched tin rather than create it themselves.
Purchasing punched tin is not that expensive. Industrially produced punched tin artwork offer a wide range of choices at a low price since tin itself is really cheap. The price will start to really shoot up if you decide to hunt for a piece of punched tin antique. Punched tin antiques are mainly handcrafted and offer designs that cannot easily be found today.
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