PLEASE NOTE THAT WE ARE ON HOLIDAY FROM 22/12/2022 UNTIL 03/01/2023.
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ROYAL MAIL STRIKE ACTION AND LAST POSTING DATES
Because of RM strikes due to take place on 9th, 11th, 14th, 15th, 23rd and 24th of December, there will be disruption to our collections and delays on delivery times. We will be working hard to get your goods out to you but please allow more time for delivery of your orders as a result of the delays this will cause.
Delivery is no longer guaranteed for Christmas.

Painting a Torso

Gaddi Torso Wall Art by Kim Curtis

Painting a Torso

Gaddi Torso Painting in progress first stage
Gaddi Torso Painting in progress second stage
Gaddi Torso Painting in progress third stage
Gaddi Torso Painting in progress final stage
Fragment Series of Wall Art Prints

Included in our new range of printed Wall Art panels is artwork featuring the Gaddi Torso. Painting her interpretation of this classic sculpture in oil paint, Kim shares some technique tips. 

Pushing Through

We have had many visitors to the Art Shop over the years who have been very worried about how to transfer a drawing to a painting surface. There are many ways of doing this, of course, and we have mentioned some of them in previous posts. These include using a prepared transfer paper or tracing the image onto tracing paper. The image can then be pushed through by carefully drawing over the linework or ‘pricking’ along the lines and dabbing powdered pastel or pigment through the holes to leave the outline on the painting surface. Of course it will depend on the media you are using as you don’t want to apply too much material to a surface if it is not going to be part of the artwork and the the paint is not going to cover it. For instance, a hard pencil that transfers less graphite to the surface is preferable when plotting out a watercolour.

Freehand

With oil and acrylic, though, I prefer to draw free hand onto the painting surface with the paint. The  beauty of both these media – especially with 0il – is that you can paint over and over correcting and perfecting any issues with the linework. Painting the Gaddi Torso, the starting linework was very rough. It is at the point of painting in the background  that I zero in on the preferred line using the negatve space to define the form. Roughly plotting in areas of light and shadow ensures that the drawing is sound and the layers of colour can be built up.

Diving In

I might have mentioned that I just love working in oil – it is just so forgiving and, if you simply dive in, there is no need to ‘faff’ around pushing through!

Introducing Robby

Robby by Peter Taylor Ward

Introducing Robby

Here’s one for all you sci-fi fans out there! 

Those of you who know your robots will already be familiar with Robby. But, if not, allow us to introduce him…

Robby had his big breakthrough in the 1956 Science Fiction film classic, Forbidden Planet. The film was seen as being loosely based on Shakespeare’s The Tempest and Robby’s character had much in common with the part of Ariel. 

He was the first filmatic robot to have a distinct personality and it was his dry wit and loyalty that made him quite the star of the film. Although portrayed as a maniacal machine in the film’s posters, Robby was actually a very intelligent and benevolent character. 

He went on to ‘star’ in many other films and tv shows either as himself or as a generic, unnamed robot! 

And now he is celebrated in acrylic paint with Peter’s fantastic Wall Art panel available at Cut Loose Art.

Painting the Unicyclist

View of The Unicyclist by Kim Curtis

Painting the Unicyclist

This post is about me painting my Wall Art piece called The Unicyclist. I’m at my happiest when I’m painting. I particularly love working in oil and larger pieces allow me to really slap it on and have fun!

First stage of the Unicyclist by Kim Curtis
Second stage of the Unicyclist by Kim Curtis
Third stage of the Unicyclist by Kim Curtis

I always start by defining the tonal values with thinned oil – very much to the ‘fat over lean’ principle. This is the practice, when using oil in layers, of ensuring that lower layers are thin – diluted with turps – to dry quickly and allowing thicker layers to be applied. Thicker layers consist of either oil paint straight from the tube or paint mixed with oil, painting medium or Liquin. I tend to use Liquin as it really does speed up drying times.

Painting the Unicyclist
Almost finished painting the Uncyclist

Before starting to paint, I had drawn out the figure onto a board and cut it out using a jig saw. You might notice that I wasn’t entirely happy with the line I had taken with saw at the bottom of the wheel. That was easily sorted with the jig saw after the painting was complete.

The cut out panel was then primed with gesso and off we go!

The thing I like best about oil is that you don’t have to be precious about it. The drawing is roughly sketched out with thinned oil. If I think that the drawing is just too off, then I can gesso over it and start again. If it gives me a rough idea, then that’s fine to get with the painting. I’ll be painting over the linework and correcting anything that is totally out as I build up the layers anyway.

This is just one of a range of cut-out Wall Art pieces that Peter and I have produced. We are inspired by anything and everything. The only criteria on subject matter is that it just has to have the potential to look great hanging on a wall as big piece of art! Watch out for bananas, five feet fish, robots and can-can dancers. 

These are sold as one-off originals but you will also see them in our shop reproduced on our lampshades, cushions and  prints. 

Flying the Flag

Union Flag Cushions by Cut Loose Art

Flying the Flag

Union Flag Flying by Kim Curtis

Over the next few weeks, we will be introducing you to our large Wall Art pieces. These are shaped paintings in either oil or acrylic that offer a little something different to traditional framed artwork!

Each piece is painted on board, cut to shape and finished on the edges with metallic stripping. As I prefer to work in oils, mine will always be in oil. Whilst Peter likes to use acrylic paints when working on this scale. As always, we both like variety and so you will find subjects ranging from Pop Art Bananas to Film Characters! All are designed to hang on the wall to make a bold impression on a room.

This is one of those Wall Art pieces depicting the Union Flag Flying. The sense of movement has been amplified by cutting the shape out so you get the impression that it is in mid flutter. The colours used -Alizarin Crimson, Prussian Blue and Naples Yellow – give an aged feel to the piece. I, personally, love the flag in vintage colours as it reminds me of our rich history.

   

Once the Wall Art was done, I decided I wanted to play with the image. So I went for a random repeat of the flag image. I have several plans for this design but the main ones are fabric for ottamans and chairs. Watch the web site for these when they’re ready.

Union Flag Fabric

 

Union Flag Cushions by Cut Loose Art
Union Flag Cushions by Cut Loose Art
Close Up of Union Flag Cushions

The cushions, however, are already done! Find out how you can purchase one of our exclusive Union Flag cushions here.

Time on your Hands ?

Hampton Court Palace by Peter Taylor Ward

Time on your hands?

Hampton Court Palace by Peter Taylor Ward

Lockdown’s no problem when you have a project on the go!

Not that this is a recent piece but it is definitely an idea to keep you busy for a while if you’re feeling a little bored.

This 5 foot pencil drawing of Hampton Court Palace was a challenge Peter set himself a few years ago that took over 2 weeks to complete. Depicting the full facade of the Thames-side Palace, he was keen to include as much detail as possible. Although he decided not to draw every brick!

This beautiful and fascinating building, famous for being the one-time residence of Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn, is just down the road from us so collecting reference for the artwork was not a problem. Then, working from a series of photographs and sketches, Peter used his draughtmanship skills to stitch them together, correcting the photo’s skewed perspsectives with paper, pencil and ruler. No CAD here, no. Very old school!!

Hampton Court Palace by Peter Taylor Ward

Inspired by Tenniel Drawings

Alice Playing Croquet by John Tenniel
Alice by Tenniel
Alice in Wonderland by John Tenniel

Like most people, my first encounter with Alice was through the Disney animated film, ‘Alice in Wonderland’. Little did I then know that so much of the characteristaion was taken directly from the illustrations of a Victorian political cartoonist named John Tenniel. Although Tenniel was closely ‘guided’ by the writer, Lewis Carrol, his charming representations, witty embellishments and beautifully observed detail helped to make ‘Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland’ an immediate best seller and a favourite of generations of children and adults to this day.

He trained at the RA before it’s restrictive rules and very formal approach led him to abandon his studies there to concentrate on honing his skills as an illustrator. This he did very successfully and went on to have a 50 year long career with Punch Magazine and illustrate many classic novels gaining a Knighthood for his artistic achievements in 1893.

Born on this day – 28th February – 200 years ago, I am reminded how much I have admired his work and how much it has influenced my own. It was Lewis Carroll who intrigued me with his marvellous characters but it was Tenniel who made me fall in love with the world of Alice and his drawings that led me to pick up pen and ink to embark on my own journey of illustration. Thank you John Tenniel and Happy Birthday!

Mad Hatter's Tea Party by Kim Curtis

Buy Beautiful Prints by Peter Taylor Ward

Cockerel by Peter Taylor Ward

Have you taken a peek at our shop yet? 

Among the items for sale is an exclusive collection of Fine Art Giclée Prints featuring British Fauna. The collection, by Peter Taylor Ward, features  beautiful drawings of some of the UK’s most loved animals and birds. Along with this glorious Cockerel, the collection also includes a fox, a Highland Cow, a rabbit and several hares. The whole menagerie and more can be purchased via the Cut Loose Art web site or our Facebook page.

Put art at the heart of your home with Fine Art prints from Cut Loose Art.  

Venice Tint Series by Peter Taylor Ward

Venetian Style

A lost cause? A Venetian Style makeover on an extremely battered, old chair. This unimpressive piece of furniture looked like it had stood in a

Read More »
Libyan Sybil Charcoal Drawing by Kim Curtis

The Libyan Sybil

The Libyan Sybil is featured in another section of Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel Masterpiece. This particular figure from Classical mythology was a prophetess named Phemonoe. My charcoal

Read More »
Venice I Tint Cushion by Peter Taylor Ward

Cosy Art

Cut Loose Art have been working hard to bring Art to the Heart of your Home!  And, with our new range of cushions, you can

Read More »
Printed artwork entitled Venice IV Tint by Peter Taylor Ward

Venice Charcoal Drawing

https://youtu.be/JvcZIgeMFRE The charcoal drawing of Venice IV Tint takes shape.  So, as you would expect, every print starts as a drawing. This short film shows

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Venetian Style

Venice Tint Series by Peter Taylor Ward
Chair featuring the artwork of Peter Taylor Ward

A lost cause?

A Venetian Style makeover on an extremely battered, old chair. This unimpressive piece of furniture looked like it had stood in a 1970’s school staff room for years and then left there as the school was demolished around it! On arrival, it was covered in resin, paint and plaster dust and had rather wonky legs.

The fabric did not have much going for it either. It was a very course, utilitarian material in an unappealing colour and covered in stains that didn’t bear thinking about. The padding was thin, the hessian ripped and the springs sagging. In all, it was in a sorry state.

The most obvious place for it was the bin and, to be honest, once all the unusable bits were stripped away, there was not much left. In fact, there was just a wooden frame. But I loved the curve of the arms and the tapering supports between the back and arms. I could see a lovely chair and knew just the artwork that would suit it. However, this was going to be not so much upcycling as starting again!

Chair in need
Stripping the Chair
The rebuild starts
The back is completed

The Artwork

Peter Taylor Ward has taken inspiration from the architecture of Venice for much of his work. He has used it as a subject for detailed pencil drawings, large-scale oil paintings and digitally coloured pen drawings. He has also executed a number of loose charcoal drawings featuring scenes from this elegant city. It was to these digitally coloured charcoal drawings that I looked for a suitable fabric.

Venice II Tint already appears in a range of resin-finished prints and is the piece that was chosen for the chair. Printed onto a hard-wearing twill upholstery fabric, the image was to be used in three separate sections. The skyline features on the backrest with the arms seeming to extend from the buildings like architectural features. The seat uses the foreground of the artwork with the dark waters and forest of mooring poles. More poles are depicted in an almost abstract style on the back panel. 

New seat for an old chair
Chair seat taking shape
Not quite ready to sit on

A Transformation

Although the wooden frame still has its quirky assyemtric lines, it is now stable and has a smooth, charcoal grey finish. The colour was chosen to mirror the original media of the artwork.

It is now a far cry from the battered, old chair it was with a stylish new look. 

Venice Tint Series by Peter Taylor Ward
Venice II Tint Chair by Cut Loose Art

A chair for Mother’s Day

Mother's Day Chair

Nan's Old Chair to Mum's New Chair

This Nursing Chair had stood in our Nan’s Living Room for many years. She always sat in it to do her crosswords, knitting or reading. It also became a favourite comfy place for the dog! So, when mum inherited it, there were scratches and scuffs, saggy and punctured fabric and a fair few dog hairs. But, even if this state, there was no way that Nan’s Old Chair was going to the tip.

Just a little makeover was required and it seemed like a great project to hone my re-upholstery skills! And get some extra Mother’s Day Brownie Points!! Deciding not to make it look exactly like it did when it was new, this gorgeous fabric and Prairie Blue paint was chosen. 

After stripping it right back, work began putting it all back together again. Here are few photos that show some of the processes it went through to become Mum’s New Chair…

Nan's Old Chair
The chair that mum inherited
Looking very sorry for itself..
The chair stripped bare
Taking Shape
A new seat for the old chair
Sorting out the Buttons
Getting the back ready for the buttons
Buttons secured
The hessian back with the button cord all tied..
The back Panel in Place
The wadding and fabric is finished at the back
The New Chair is complete
With a finishing of grey cord, Mum's New Chair is complete.
Previous slide
Next slide
Nans Old Chair
Nan's Chair Stripped Bare
New seat on Old Chair
Sorting out the buttons
Tying off the buttons
The back of the New Chair
The finished new chair

The Libyan Sybil

Libyan Sybil Charcoal Drawing by Kim Curtis
Libyan Sybil Charcoal Drawing by Kim Curtis

The Libyan Sybil is featured in another section of Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel Masterpiece. This particular figure from Classical mythology was a prophetess named Phemonoe.

My charcoal drawing of this figure went through a number of processes to get to the finished piece. See the photos below showing some of these processes.  The original drawing was made using willow charcoal, Conté sticks and a black Pitt Pastel pencil. Once scanned, the drawing is digitally coloured before being printed. The print is then covered in a resin coating and framed. 

We are currently working on the design of a beautiful new frame moulding. This will be used on all our large resin pieces so check back soon when the finished framed work will be available.

In the meantime, if you like the Sybil, she appears on one of our Italian-inspired cushions. See her and more of our gorgeous cushions in our shop.

My charcoal drawing of the Libyan Sybil
Digitally coloured prints

Inspired by Michelangelo

Close up of the table top artwork

Inspired by Michelangelo

For this Cut Loose Art piece of furniture, I looked to the work of one of the most famous and revered artists of all time – Michelangelo. These iconic hands form part of a panel in the Sistine Chapel that Michelangelo completed in 1512.

Here are 3 facts about the chapel artwork that you may not have known…

  • The work is one of the first to depict God as a man with a long flowing beard. 
  • Michelangelo’s interest in anatomy is said to be evident in the shape of God’s cloak seen in this panel. It is thought to be a depiction of a brain and represents the source of man’s intelligence.
  •  The panel is called the Creation of Adam and is one of the most replicated religious artworks. It has found its way into cartoons, lego, film posters such as E.T. and , of course, countless murals and interior designs…

Talking of which, click here for more information on this table

Side Table featuring the Creation of Adam Hands
Creation of Adam by Michelangelo

The Creation of Adam panel that forms part of the Sistine Chapel Masterpiece by Michelangelo

Purrfect Moggies for the Mantelpiece

Floor standing decorative panels featuring cats
Floor standing decorative panels featuring cats

Purrfect Moggies to decorate your home. These decorative wooden, shaped panels can be a charming addition to any room.

Featuring the charcoal drawings of Peter Taylor Ward, each one is digitally coloured and printed on top quality paper. They are then adhered to wood before being individually scroll cut and set in a wooden base.

The exclusive artwork and hand-finishing makes them very special cats! Each one is lovingly crafted, signed and numbered and keen to become part of your home!

Ginger Cat by Peter Taylor Ward

At 15″ tall and free standing, they can be used to decorate various areas of a house. Whether they are placed on the floor or on a shelf, they will look right at home. Their trompe l’oeil look will add interest and intrigue to your room and delight all those who see them. So why not adorn your mantelpiece or set off a feature fireplace hearth?  Have one peeking out from a bookshelf or standing by to welcome guests in the porch?

Check out these moggies and our other decorative panels

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