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Robert Sabuda - Paper Engineer/Illustrator/Author
Posted: 08/28/2006

Robert Sabuda

What do you do:
Paper Engineer/Illustrator/Author

Where do you work:
New York City, New York

When did you realize your interest in pop-up books:
One of the things with Dial was that they had so many different types of illustrators and books there. At that time I was a print maker. I was doing illustration work and print making when I did my first children’s books. Then as I became more well known I was able to go on a limb with some techniques. I was still working in two dimensions, but I was working in paper a lot. I was doing paper collage and paper mosaics in my picture books. I thought this is great working with all these different techniques with paper why not try something 3D.

Why pop-ups:
It was the first pop-up book that I saw. I had never seen a book that had an element on the inside that was 3D. Not so much that it was 3D but that it folded shut once you closed the book back down. I had never experienced that before.

How would you advise others:
I would say if you are interested in becoming a paper engineer to just start building, start making. Go to my web site,, there are a whole bunch of pop-ups that you can print out. Learn the basics. There is a bibliography. I think partly because it’s such a small field no matter how you slice and dice it you are going to have to do a little bit of self teaching. But that’s good because when you are young that is when you should really be exploring.