At first glance, this 1969 Ford Mustang looks like the real thing, but take a closer look and you'll see that it's actually made of paper! When Jonathan Brand found the love of his life, he sold the Mustang that he had painstakingly restored with his father to buy his future wife an engagement ring. But he missed the car so much that he decided to recreate it, one piece at a time, with paper. The result is Brand's artful representation of the lost Mustang, called"One Piece at a Time" — the name itself an homage to a Johnny Cash song about an assembly line worker from Detroit who builds a Cadillac one piece at a time from stolen parts. Brand created 3D drawings on his computer, printed them out on large scale inkjet paper and then glued them together creating this fragile vehicle with absolutely no other support structure.
We can’t help but wonder if Brand used recycled paper to create this masterpiece — we hope he did — and we’re concerned about the toxic nature of the inkjet ink that colors the piece but we’re still in awe of his creation. Brand created 3D drawings, which he then cut out to make jigsaw pieces. Every edge of every piece was labeled with a corresponding number that helped him fold and match the pieces to create the proper shapes. “I cut, fold and glue shapes together much like a complicated three-dimensional jigsaw puzzle,” Brand notes on his website.
“The details of the car are based more on my memory and a few photographs,” Brand explains. “I no longer have access to the original car and chose not to use a surrogate to measure and get all the details correct. I like when things are slightly off, in the wrong place or missing, just like my memories of the original.” He notes that though the car might seem quite fragile he’s actually been quite lucky in the damage department. A small boy visiting one of his gallery events decided to punch in a tire because he thought it was real and though initial fear ran high Brand realized that the tire just bounced back into shape after the blow. After inspection he saw that it had just ripped along a couple of folds, which were easily glued back together. More of a worry for the paper Mustang, however, is humidity — Brand’s worst nightmare when it comes to his creation!