Advanced Papercraft Techniques: Designing with Paper

A course by Diana Beltran Herrera
Industrial Designer. Bristol, United Kingdom.
Joined October 2017
, Industrial Designer

Explore the possibilities of paper by transforming designs into volumetric shapes

  • Spanish with subtitles in English
  • 99% positive reviews (279)
  • 5541 students

Explore the possibilities of paper by transforming designs into volumetric shapes

Spanish with subtitles in English
  • 99% positive reviews (279)
  • 5541 students
  • 19 lessons (3h 29m)
  • 15 additional resources (11 files)
  • Online and at your own pace
  • Available on the app
  • Audio: Spanish
  • Spanish, English, Portuguese
  • Level: Intermediate
  • Unlimited access forever

Have you ever pondered the endless creative possibilities of the humble sheet of paper? Diana Beltrán is a designer and paper sculptor who has worked for major international clients like James Cropper, Hodder and Stoughton, Marina Rinaldi, and many more.

In this online course, join her on a journey through exciting techniques and innovative ways to design with paper. With a range of simple exercises combining manual and digital methods, discover how to model this cheap and easy-to-find material, transforming two-dimensional designs into incredible compositions created with volumetric shapes.

What will you learn in this online course?

Course table of contents

  • U1
    U1. Hello welcome!
  • U2
    U2. Building the idea
  • U3
    U3. Preliminary techniques
  • U4
    U4. Let's do it!
  • U5
    U5. Let's build our cover
  • FP
    FP Final project
View details

Start by learning about Diana Beltrán Herrera's background, her influences, and which pieces of work and artists inspire her the most when creating her own art.

She then explains how to search for references to help create your design. Diana focuses much of her work on birds and nature, so the piece she shows you how to make features flora and fauna. Once you have your folder of images, import them into Illustrator and design the first sketch of your final project.

Now it's time to get your hands dirty! Diana explains how to cut the pieces and use the glue correctly. Apply watercolors and other painting materials to develop all the elements of your design.

Next, dive right into creating the main volumetric component of your design. Look at how to create the main structure (in this case, a bird) using paper and how to assemble each of the parts, which are created separately. Learn how to dress the skeleton of your bird with paper feathers and add the eyes and beak.

Once you've made the three-dimensional figure, move on to create the typography, also using paper. Arrange all the elements on the background and position the decorative pieces, then Diana wraps up by giving you some tips on how to get the best results when working with paper compositions.

What is this course's project?

Combine digital and manual techniques to create a graphic piece with two- and three-dimensional elements to be used as the scene for the cover of a book, poster, or magazine.

Projects by course students

Who is this online course for?

Designers, illustrators, and anyone interested in exploring the possibilities of such a seemingly simple material as paper, to incorporate into their creations in unexpected ways.

Requirements and materials

No prior experience is needed to take this course, you just need to be skilled with your hands and have basic notions of Illustrator to make the initial composition.

As for materials, you need different colored paper (Diana recommends the Canson brand for its stiffness) or cardboard, liquid silicone or glue, a precision scalpel with fine tip, a cutting surface, fine-point scissors, a ruler, a pencil, an eraser, masking tape, and paints. You also need a computer installed with Illustrator and a printer.


5541 Students
279 Reviews
99% Positive ratings

Diana Beltran Herrera

A course by Diana Beltran Herrera

Teacher Plus
Industrial Designer

After graduating as an industrial designer from the Universidad Jorge Tadeo Lozano in Bogotá, Diana decided to explore design from a more experimental perspective, studying the different qualities of cheap and ordinary materials such as paper and cardboard and developing simple ways to transform them and give them a new value and use.

Nature and animals are very present in Diana Beltrán's work, which she explores endlessly through papercraft.

Her work has been exhibited in Europe, Asia, Latin America, and the United States, where she has participated in group and solo shows. She has also worked for international clients in editorial design, advertising, window dressing, events, and interior design projects, working for 215 McCann, Olivari Olive Oil, Volevatch, Longwood Gardens US, ENI, Marina Rinaldi, Lebeau-Courally, James Cropper UK, Hodder and Stoughton UK, Horse Mag, On investing magazine, the Libertine Lindenberg Hotel, Restaurant Auberge de l'Ill, Mercedes Salazar, and UH Hospitals USA.


  • U1

    Hello welcome!

    • Presentation
    • Influences
  • U2

    Building the idea

    • materials
    • Start of the idea: references and drawing
    • Cover design
  • U3

    Preliminary techniques

    • How to cut and paste
    • How do I use watercolors
    • Structures with wire
  • U4

    Let's do it!

    • Sort and Crop 1
    • Sort and Crop 2
    • We are going to make skeleton and legs of our bird
    • We paste tail and wings
    • We stick feathers, beak and eyes 1
    • We stick feathers, beak and eyes 2
    • We stick feathers, beak and eyes 3
  • U5

    Let's build our cover

    • We'll start with the background and the lettering
    • The decoration
    • We posed the bird
    • Final recommendations
  • FP

    Final project

    • Advanced papercraft techniques: designing with paper

What to expect from a Domestika course

  • Learn at your own pace

    Enjoy learning from home without a set schedule and with an easy-to-follow method. You set your own pace.

  • Learn from the best professionals

    Learn valuable methods and techniques explained by top experts in the creative sector.

  • Meet expert teachers

    Each expert teaches what they do best, with clear guidelines, true passion, and professional insight in every lesson.

  • Certificates

    If you're a Plus or PRO member, get a custom certificate signed by your teacher for every course. Share it on your portfolio, social media, or wherever you like.

  • Get front-row seats

    Videos of the highest quality, so you don't miss a single detail. With unlimited access, you can watch them as many times as you need to perfect your technique.

  • Share knowledge and ideas

    Ask questions, request feedback, or offer solutions. Share your learning experience with other students in the community who are as passionate about creativity as you are.

  • Connect with a global creative community

    The community is home to millions of people from around the world who are curious and passionate about exploring and expressing their creativity.

  • Watch professionally produced courses

    Domestika curates its teacher roster and produces every course in-house to ensure a high-quality online learning experience.


Domestika's courses are online classes that provide you with the tools and skills you need to complete a specific project. Every step of the project combines video lessons with complementary instructional material, so you can learn by doing. Domestika's courses also allow you to share your own projects with the teacher and with other students, creating a dynamic course community.

All courses are 100% online, so once they're published, courses start and finish whenever you want. You set the pace of the class. You can go back to review what interests you most and skip what you already know, ask questions, answer questions, share your projects, and more.

The courses are divided into different units. Each one includes lessons, informational text, tasks, and practice exercises to help you carry out your project step by step, with additional complementary resources and downloads. You'll also have access to an exclusive forum where you can interact with the teacher and with other students, as well as share your work and your course project, creating a community around the course.

You can redeem the course you received by accessing the redeeming page and entering your gift code.

If you're a Plus or PRO member, when you complete a course you'll instantly get your personalized certificate. You can see all your certificates in the Certificates section of your profile. You can download your certificates as PDFs and share the link online. Learn more about certificates
Advanced Papercraft Techniques: Designing with Paper. Craft course by Diana Beltran Herrera

Advanced Papercraft Techniques: Designing with Paper

A course by Diana Beltran Herrera
Industrial Designer. Bristol, United Kingdom.
Joined October 2017
  • 99% positive reviews (279)
  • 5541 students