Urban Sketching – Research

Some artists that I have researched for the project Urban Sketching.

Advertisements

For this project I have looked at a few artist’s who are urban sketchers. I have found that their work is usually vastly different but overall I prefer the looser more experimental work to the more accurate.

IMG_0008.jpegOne of the artists that I have looked at for this project is Marc Taro Holmes. He is an urban sketcher that works in a various number of ways. His work that I find most inspiring are his pieces made using ink, pen and washes. I also like how he focuses just on certain elements of a building and not the whole thing. I think that the way he uses pen and ink has an element of liveliness and I think that it works well to capture the essence of a building. This has inspired me to use my ink and dip pens for this project.

IMG_0012.jpegAnother artist that I have looked at for this project is Sue Lewington. She uses a mixture of techniques including painting and sketching. Her drawings are more detailed and realistic but they are also colourful as she uses a lot of water colours. Her sketches also feature text, usually about what she has drawn. I think that her use of colour through watercolours adds some charm to her images and a fairy tale like quality.

Glamour and the Grotesque – constellation reflective post

A reflection on what I have learnt from the study group Glamour and the Grotesque and Constellation as a whole.

In this study group I have learnt a lot about materials and their connotations. I have learnt that different materials convey different concepts and that materials have ‘cultural CVs’ which can have a massive impact on the overall meaning of a piece. This knowledge has encouraged me to consider the materials that I use within my work with more care. I have also learnt that you can contradict yourself within your work, you can convey two different concepts through the use of materials, forms and objects. Again this has encouraged me to consider the materials that I use, the forms that I create and the objects that I select more carefully as everything has connotations that I may or may not want to imply through my work. In a piece that I made for an editorial project I was more aware of the materials and colours that I chose and the forms that I used as the image was for an article about a sensitive topic and I wanted to convey that sensitivity through my work.

This study group has also allowed me to consider how different mediums can convey the same messages and concepts, for example, we have looked at how the grotesque can be portrayed through clothing, artwork and photography. I have learnt about the importance of tactility and design in relation to the body and how these things can have a huge impact on how someone interprets a piece and what they take from it. I have learnt about liminality and how things can shape-shift through meanings, motifs, physical changes and how people perceive something. I am now able to consider all of these concepts when creating my work, I am now more selective of materials as each material has its own connotations, I consider the objects that I choose to include in my work as different objects hold different meanings. I also think about how I can contradict myself and how multiple meanings can be conveyed through the things that I choose to create and include.

I have also learnt how to analyse my work and others effectively in this study group. Through the concepts we have discussed I am now able to identify them in pieces of work, allowing me to think of certain materials and forms in a way I had not considered before. I can now analyse a piece of work by picking out concepts and annotations and then backing this analysis up by finding theories from academic writers.

I have learnt about how artists can be cross-disciplinary in order to convey messages, for example as an Illustrator I can use materials in a collage in order to convey concepts or create three-dimensional objects and forms to use within my work.

This study group has made me more aware of the motifs that I can include within my work, and that there is a process of selecting and discarding in which I can specifically select concepts and connotations to include or discard in my work.

The concepts that we have discussed surrounding femininity have allowed me to look at images in a different way, It is now apparent to me how castration anxiety and the phallic woman is a common theme in art and everyday things such as advertising.  

 

My working process has changed since last year, I have taken more time to analyse my chosen images that I used for my most recent essay. I found it easier to start my planning earlier and to repeatedly go back to the analysis with fresh eyes in order to see more within an image. This also enabled me to add more to my analysis by discovering new concepts and ideas through theories which I could see applied to the images I was looking at. To improve upon my last essay I needed to do more independent research into theories that I could use to backup my analysis. I was sort of successful at doing this but I occasionally found this process difficult when looking for quotations from books  which I could use to support my argument. I found some books which related to the topics that I explored didn’t have anything that I could use to support what I was stating in my essay. This wouldn’t have been an issue if I had had more time to do this, but as I only had a few weeks to write my essay this became a problem as the process of looking through books for relevant information was time consuming. I should have also managed my time better as I found it difficult to do this essay and stay on top of my field project work at the same time.

I found the process of planning the essay using the columns analysis just as effective as last time, I find that it helps me to sort my thoughts effectively which then makes it easier to write my analysis is essay form. I think that the idea of looking at the bigger picture when writing a conclusion helped immensely, rather than re-writing what I had already said I was able to talk about my practice and how the meanings and concepts in the images really show how materials and forms can be used to convey meanings.

Constellation has taught me to be more mindful when considering the materials, forms, textures and objects that I want to include within my work as all of these elements have their own connotations and meanings. It has also taught me to question things and to be more inquisitive when looking at a piece of someone else’s work or my own. It has also taught me how new meanings can be created through the juxtapositions of materials and objects and the combinations that can me made from these features.

Space is the Animated Space – Model Making

An overview of all the different models that I made of my spirit that I could use in the animation.

In order to animate my spirit I needed different models that would enable it to transform into different materials. I wanted my spirit to start as a two dimensional drawing in the sketchbook and then eventually change into a three dimensional figure. I started by making paper cut outs of the monsters which I painted with acrylic paint to add some texture.

20171212_162449

I then made another set of paper cut outs using train tickets which I then painted a thin coat of white acrylic on top of. This set of paper cut outs would be used for the monster once it has eaten a train ticket so it would look like it had taken on the colours and patterns of the ticket.

20171212_162434

I also made a multicoloured set of models of the monster which colour be used if it were to eat some pages of a picture book.

20171212_162512

I then decided to start making three dimensional models that I could use in the animation. The first one I made was made from plasticine and string. I used the plasticine to create the rough shape of the monsters head, body and feet. I then wrapped string around these, I then made the arms out of plasticine but I didn’t wrap these in string. The idea for this version of the spirit is that it would look like it had eaten a ball of string.

20171212_162407

I also made a model of my monster from cardboard. I started by drawing a net that would create a box for the body. I cut it out and folded the sides so that it made a 3D cube. Then i stuck the arms, feet and ears on. The mouth was made by cutting a hole in the box and adding paper teeth. I thought that this version of the spirit worked really well as it was visually consistent with the two dimensional models and it was really clear what it was made out of.

Screenshot_20171211-155655.png

The final model that I made of the monster was supposed to resemble a cactus. I used green plasticine to create the monster, I wanted it to look really similar to the clay model that I originally made so that it would appear visually consistent. I then used tooth picks to add cactus like spines to the model. The idea was when it came to filming I could make it look like the spines were emerging slowly from underneath the skin. The idea for this model is that the spirit would come across a cactus somewhere in the studios and eat it making him turn green and prickly.

20171212_162300

Space is the Animated Place – Research

Some research that I have done for a new project about animating spirits that could potentially live in the art building at uni.

The idea for this project is to create a group animation about spirits or monsters that could be living in the Cardiff School of Art and Design.

For this project I wanted to create an gremlin inspired creature that I could animate running around the art school being mischievous and inquisitive. I started by doodling some ideas of simple monsters and spirits. Some of the ideas were inspired by the animation Spirited Away.

Image result for john kenn mortensen
John Kenn Mortensen – Sticky Monsters

I then decided to look at another artist in order to inspire my work. I looked at the book Sticky Monsters by John Kenn Mortensen. His monsters are quite terrifying but odd and his drawings gave me ideas for some for monsters and spirits.

20171213_100301

I decided that I quite liked one of the monsters that I had drawn and that I was going to use it for my project. The idea behind the monster is that it is a spirit that craves inspiration, it goes around the different studios eating things such as books, drawings, plants and materials and as it eats these things it changes colour and form. For example eating a picture book would make the monster multicoloured or eating some clay would then make him three dimensional and made out of clay.

Screenshot_20171211-155645I then made a model of my spirit to see what it would look like as a three dimensional model.
We were then put into groups so that we could discuss our ideas and come up with a way that would allow the spirits to meet and how we could animate this. From this we decided to start the animation with all of our spirits leaving their sketchbooks where they were created.

To do this I looked at Wendell McShine an artist who works in print, instillation and animation. His work references african art and it is usually about idols and Gods.

Image result for wendell mcshine rainbow hill
Wendell McShine – Rainbow Hill

His animation Rainbow Hill gave us lots of ideas for how we could animate our spirits as he uses pop ups, pull outs, paint, drawings and paper cut out figures to animate the work in his sketchbooks. From watching this animation I decided to use a paper cut out to animate my monster leaving the sketchbook as I thought this would be the easiest and most effective way.

For this project I also did some reading on Spirits of Place and Genius Loci. I have been reading the book Spirits of Place which contains short stories written by a range of people, some about themselves, about places they’ve been to and experiences they’ve had of spirits of place. I think this reading has helped to me come up with ideas for my spirit and what it represents and what I think is important in a school of art and design and what is important in my subject illustration. In my case I believe inspiration is important within my subject and the school.

Image result for black dog dave mckeanI have also looked at the graphic novel Black Dog by Dave McKean. This book briefly mentions genius loci but the use of materials, textures and collages inspired me in this project as they are an important part of my spirit. The way that the artist uses ayers of paint and paints on ripped pieces of paper that is then stuck together to create a canvas inspired me to try something similar.

Penguin Project – Research

Some research on eye catching book jackets that I have done for my latest project Penguin Book Project in which I have to create a book cover for the story Noughts and Crosses by Malorie Blackman.

Image result for penguin book covers
One Who Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest Illustrated by Ioana Negulescu 2012

I think that this image works well as a book cover as its quite striking and bold. I also like how the image relates to the story but it doesn’t give too much away. I like the use of colour, I think that they work well together to make the image lively but not too busy. I also like the different textures in the image, I think that the texture of the bark of the tree contrasts well with the texture on the pills.

To Kill A Mockingbird Illustrated by Madelyn Farley 2017

I think that this image works well as a book cover as it is very dynamic and striking. The contrast between the bright yellow background and black hand makes the book very eye-catching and intriguing. I also like the handwritten font, I think that it works really well with the image, I think that it allows the image to communicate in a more personal way.

BigSleep_CompetitionTemplate_COV.indd
The Big Sleep Illustrated by Hayley Warnham 2013

 

I think that this image works well as a cover as it is also quite dynamic. I also like the use of collage as I think that it contrasts nicely with the block colours behind it. I also like the use of negative space within the image. I think that the type font also works to well because of the sharp edges between the colours and the collage. I think that if a handwritten font was used it would just look messy and unprofessional in contrast to the other aspects of the image.

Grimms Fairy Tales Illustrated by Tim Parker 2012

I really like this book cover and I think that it really stands out as a design. I like all the different textures in the image, the wolf’s fur, the tree trunk spine and the red tongue. I also like the contrast between the blacks and greys with the red tongue and yellow eyes, it makes these features stand out in the image. I also think that the mixture of handwritten font and typed font works really well, I also like that some of the words are bigger than others to emphasise them.

Mappa Mundi Project – Research

Some research that I have undertaken for the Mappa Mundi Project in which I have to create a metaphorical map.

Image result for map of truths and beliefs
Greyson Perry – Map of Truths and Beliefs

I have chosen to look at Greyson Perry’s work for this project as he is well known for his maps and tapestries and I find the way that he uses colour and texture interesting. I like this piece because all the elements and characters make it intriguing. I like the complexity and detail as it all works to come together to form a narrative within the piece. The colours are bold which make it stand out. I also like the inclusion of text, this helps to make it appear more map like and it enables you to understand it further. This piece has inspired me to play with textures when developing my work.

Image result for will grill map of amsterdam
William Grill – Map of Amsterdam

I have also looked at William Grills work. I like this piece as it could work as a functional map. I also like the simplicity of the image, I think that it makes it easy to understand and to navigate the image. I also like the sparse use of colour, I think that this makes the image look more like traditional maps. This image has inspired me to play with colour in my work and to try including lots of detail to make my work more recognisable as a map. However, this piece is more of a literal map and the map that I will be creating needs to be metaphorical.

 

Image result for shannon rankin artist
Shannon Rankin – Map Anatomy

 

 

I like this piece by Shannon Rankin as it combines anatomy, which can be considered one type of map, with typographic maps. She has described maps as “metaphors that speak to the fragile and transitory state of our lives and our surroundings.” I think this is shown clearly in her work by the damaged map in the shape of the human head. I like the use of collage, I think this  helps to bring the image to life and adds a three dimensional quality to the piece. Her work has inspired me to incorporate collage into my work.

I also looked at psychogeographic maps when researching images for this project.

Related image
Psychogeographic Map

I find this map interesting as I like how a traditional map has been used to create an anatomical map of the head. I like how the roads and rivers appear to be a map of veins and nerves in the head. I like how its has a similar theme to the work from Shannon Rankin. I think that this piece looks more illustrative than her work and it reminds me of 18th century anatomy drawings. I like how again two different forms of maps have been combined to form a new metaphorical map.

Editorial Illustration

A short analysis of a piece of editorial illustration and how it works within context.

Spite is Good. Spite Works.

By Natalie Angier

Illustrations by Serge Bloch

This article is about spite and how it affects human behaviour. It talks about how psychologists view spite as a negative trait but now it is being considered as something positive because of the role that it may have played in developing some positive traits such as cooperation and a sense of fair play. 

Serge’s work illustrates the theme of this article well through the use of colour and subjects. The sickly green colour is commonly associated with negative feelings such as jealousy and spite. The purple contrasts with the green colour which portrays the conflict between the two characters in the images and the conflict that sometimes ensues because of spiteful individuals.

I think that the first image clearly illustrates the idea that spitefulness is ‘the urge to punish, hurt, humiliate or harass another’. It portrays this in a simple almost diagram like effect which is easy to follow and understand.

I think that the second image shows that there is no winner when you are spiteful. It clearly demonstrates that if you go out of your way to hurt or offend others then it will do you harm as well. The simplistic art helps to make this clear as it communicates its message simply.

Serge Bloch has responded to this article with two simple images that communicate their message clearly without unneeded complexity.