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A little bit about me (I hope it's not too boring!) and how I came to be an artist.

Background



My name is Sharon Curtis and I became a full time artist in 2012 following graduation from Hereford College of Art. I live in the wonderful county of Herefordshire from where I draw much inspiration in my art. My early studies were in textiles and I specialised in papers, in particular the cutting and folding all kinds of wonderful paper into three-dimensional pieces of art. I was intrigued at the effect light had, shining through the cut shapes.

Paper Art

My studies took me back into the Japanese techniques of Origami (folding of paper), Kirigami (cutting of paper) and Washi (making of paper). Using these techniques, I created pieces such as a large wall-hanging from a single piece of paper - of over a metre wide and three metres long! I cut intricate interlaced floral shapes with nothing more than a trusty surgeon's scalpel ensuring that each leaf or stem or petal connected to the next piece to maintain its integrity. The end result and the effect was stunning.



My paper-cut art today features hearts, fruit, and butterflies carefully arranged and folded, to create wonderful pieces to hang in your home or office. I still love the effect the light has when you view the work from different angles. I do not lasers, stencils, dies or stamping gadgets, and still cut every single piece myself using  a scalpel – each piece of art is therefore entirely unique as no two cuts are the same!
As you might imagine, one wrong slip of the knife renders the piece ruined and consigned to the waste bin! It is a very painstaking, time-consuming process but one which I really enjoy.

Print-making

I am also a reduction-lino print-maker. Reduction Lino is where you sequentially cut away ('reduce') the amount of material left on the lino. After completing each reduction, you apply ink to the (uncut) surface and print it onto the paper. Like the paper cutting, one wrong slip carving the lino and its curtains for that lino AND all the prints done to date from that lino!

I hand draw the image onto the lino (I prefer blue Japanese lino) and then print each layer or colour using my ABIG A2 Press (German) using Caligo Safe-Wash Relief Inks. The working out of which bits of lino to remove, to be printed in a layer/colour can be quite demanding.

I love Pop Art, in particular the glorious work of Andy Warhol and Roy Lichtenstein. I often find myself bemused at the near-slavish loyalty we have to certain brands, and found myself pursuing a kind of pop art, contemporary look at popular brands -hence my Iconic Brands lino art.

Bovril® was my first piece and was a private study because of my own family's love of the beefy extract. The intention was simply to have some colourful prints of our favourite brands adorn some wall space in my home. Friends encouraged me to create a new lino of their love for the yeast variety, Marmite®.

My lino work has continued in a similar way with contemporary pieces for other popular brands of spirit - stimulated by the amazing colours that you see when light shines through the bottles!

I should add that Bovril® and Marmite® are registered trademarks of Unilever plc and I have no affiliation or association whatsoever with Unilever beyond being a lover and avid consumer of at least one of the aforementioned brands (Boiled egg with buttered toast soldiers smothered in Bovril is sooo yummy!).

I do hope you like my art  -let me know! Send me a message, Follow me on Twitter, and or, Pinterest, Like my Facebook page, even if only to say Hi!

Best,
Sharon
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