Sam Smith’s Paper Boats – Pleasure Boats of England

Sam Smith published these paper kit Pleasure Boats in 1974. Pre-cut push-out components lock together with tabs. No glue needed – not vital anyway. They were one of several sets of kits produced at the time and compliment his better known wooden fleets and multimedia pieces.

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I could’t bring myself to pull the originals apart so I have lazercopied them onto card and used a scalpel to cut them out which is pretty straightforward. Some of the cuts are hard to locate that way. I have always enjoyed modelling in paper and the methods feel very familiar to working with clay when making my own trawlers.

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The results are typical Sam Smith. I have completed three of the four – Sea Trips, Idle Hearts and The Old Gaffer. Sea Trips is double-sided with jolly holiday makers on the port side – Happy Gull – and vomiting miseries on the starboard – Storm Petrel. The upmarket Idle Hearts features sunbathing punters on the deck and the stoker glowering darkly from a deck hatch, ‘a better sailor than any of them.’ The Old Gaffer is more upmarket with billowing paper sails (a bit one-sided).

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