You can't kill a clematis by cutting. Just look at this clematis vine grow after having been cut hard in spring.
We know that in pruning the real learning happens in watching a plant grow back. That's why we try to give every before-the-cut photo an after-the-comeback counterpart. Do you have such a pair of pictures to share with others who are working up the nerve to prune? Send them to us and we'll share them!