Welcome to Silhouettes By Hand, the primary offering from Snake Oil Productions* - and from creative specialist, Lauren Muney.
- to continue the beautiful [historical] legacy of silhouettes
- to offer a living experience of our history
- to offer an elegant reminder of an event
- to break events out of old ideas and offerings by offering a respectful participatory experience
“My name is Lauren Muney. I cut silhouettes freehand with scissors, in the traditional portrait style made especially popular 1760-1860's, and extending into the 21st century as well. This historical style of portraiture was very popular before photography was invented.
My only tools are special paper and scissors - I look at my sitter and cut the profile into the paper. I do not draw these portraits before cutting: the scissors do the “drawing”, committing the cuts immediately without possibility of erasure. People who watch me cut these portraits often remark how much fun it is just to watch.
As the owner of several businesses, I endeavor to treat all my clients and customers professionally and responsibly in our collaboration together."
Lauren Muney has been a professional artist, entertainer, special-event producer, and consultant for over 30 years. Alongside her graphic illustration degree from a leading arts college, her experience with live events of all types ranges across the United States, Canada, and in Asia and Europe. (See a few images from her past here)
You'll love her vast experience based on her past --and unique offering of interactive presentation at your event.
Lauren began her interest in cutting silhouettes after studying the entertainments of historical time periods. She fell in love with silhouettes, the art of silhouette cutting, and its place in history. She is self-taught in the freehand-scissoring silhouette skill, based on descriptions from silhouette masters from previous centuries.
Have Scissors - Will Travel
She is currently located in the Baltimore, Maryland / Washington DC region of the United States, yet she travels to other states, regions, and countries to serve events and museums, and facilities. “Have scissors, will travel”. Read more on the Booking page.
Recent Exciting Highlights
- In March 2018, the Lost Trades Fair (Australia) invited Lauren to demonstrate and discuss the historic, "lost" trade of silhouette portraiture at its Kyneton, (Victoria state) event. Few Americans are invited.
- In March 2016 the international Association of Living History, Farm and Agricultural Museums asked Lauren to redesign the image on their logo, using traditional silhouettes to represent its membership. Lauren used a combination of live portraiture and traditional silhouette-style scherenschnitte (black and white folk hand-cut designwork) to fulfill the design needs.
- In Feb 2016 Lauren was profiled in Early American Life magazine. Read the article here
- In 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, and 2017 Lauren was honored with being selected as a Master Traditional Artist from Early American Life Magazine
- In 2013 Lauren was interviewed by National Public Radio in her hometown of Baltimore, MD.
- In 2014 Lauren was interviewed for an international documentary film on silhouettes by UK-based silhouette master, Charles Burns. "Silhouette Secrets" was released in 2015. The documentary has won Best Documentary at NIFF Houston, Planet Film Festival in Barcelona, Spain, 12-Month Film Festival, and nominated for Best Documentary at Marbella, Spain. Into 2016, the documentary is entered at the NYC Independent Film Festival, the London Independent Film festival, Sydney World Film Festival, and Martinque Independent Film Festival. The success of "Silhouette Secrets" shows the power and fascination of the intimate art of silhouette portraiture!
- In 2014 Silhouettes By Hand was nominated for Martha Stewart’s American Made
- In 2014 Lauren was selected as co-chair for the "Programming, Interpretation, and Education" professional group of the Association of Living History, Farm and Agricultural Museums
* Snake Oil Productions by Lauren Muney is not affiliated with the video production company of the same name.