A short reflection on what I have learnt during the project Space is the Animated Space and what I would do to improve my work if I had the chance.
I enjoyed this project as it allowed me to explore a new type of animation that is less controlled and more experimental. I was also able to play with materials and their properties which is something that I enjoy doing. I used a tablet on a tripod to film my animation which isn’t something that I had done before and I discovered that it has pros and cons. It was quite unstable which made some of the films jerky and not very smooth. I enjoyed the process of this animation and making things up as we go along. One scene which I think worked well was the scene where my monster eats a cactus, this was fairly improvised as we weren’t sure if it was going to work or if it would look effective but I the end I think that it worked really well.
I found working in a group to have its advantages and its disadvantages. It was interesting as we were all able to combine our ideas and our different skills in order to create the animation. This was really helpful at the beginning when we were discussing how the animation could start and how all our monsters and spirits could encounter each other. The disadvantages of working in a group became apparent when people were absent as this slowed the animation process as we weren’t able to discuss what we were going to do next and it became harder to animate all of the characters and film at the same time with fewer people.
Some of the things that I think could be improved in our animations are the framing and lighting in some shots. In the clip that we filmed of the spirits going up the stairs it was hard to include the larger monster in shot and to make the smaller spirits noticeable at the same time. We could have filmed close ups of the spirits travelling up the stairs with a better quality camera in order for them to be more clear, we could have then added this in in the editing process. I could have also filmed some close ups of my spirit for the scene where it escapes the sketchbook. This would have allowed me to show my character in more detail and to have more of a focus on it on the screen as toward the end of the sequence it travels to the edge of the frame where it is harder to see. I think that we would have done these things if we had had more time, but as this was a relatively short project we focused on filming the main narrative of our animation.
I was already interested in animation but I think that this project has made me want to explore the idea of sketchbook animation further and to experiment with the technique of using a tablet to animate as it is an easy, instant process that I think could work really well for short, relatively simple animations. I also like the idea of found animations, creating something from similar shapes and colours, linking them all together.
Some research that I have undertaken for the Mappa Mundi Project in which I have to create a metaphorical map.
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.
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.
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.
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.
A short summary of The Editorial Project in which we had to choose two articles and produce an illustration in response to each of them.
I have enjoyed this project as I have been able to explore a new type of visual language that I haven’t worked with before although I have found the project challenging because of the fast pace that is required for this type of work. I have enjoyed playing with materials in this project and experimenting with collage. This has given a new dimension to my illustrations which has helped to portray messages and ideas through them which is an important aspect of this project. This project has also allowed me to learn about the way in which I work and that my practice relies heavily on experimenting with materials and making them an important part of the images that I produce.
For my first article the image that I produced was a direct response to the article. I picked up on certain aspects of the feature and decided to illustrate them, making the link between the image and the article clear. I tried to include aspects of the whole article but I think that I failed to include the idea of the article being about online dating as well as disability. However, I feel that my image is quite empathetic and sensitive in communicating the themes of the article. I also think that the use of collage adds a certain charm to the image.
For the second article I chose to take a less direct approach. I decided to portray the theme of the article rather than actual events or discoveries discussed within it. I decided to convey the theme and main idea of the article, which is the fact that people enjoy frightening themselves, in a fun and light-hearted way. I chose loud and interesting textures to fashion the haunted dolls house. I think this combination of materials gives the image charm allows it to communicate in a quirky, playful way. I think this works well with the article as it adds some interest to the serious article.
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.
A summary of what I have learnt during the project Children’s Book Brief.
The main part of this project has been understanding the research and development that goes into producing a children’s book. Another major part of this project was the ability to meet deadlines as this is an important feature when working professionally.
I started this project by looking at different children’s books as well as illustrated books for older audiences. This really helped me throughout my practice as it informed my work and inspired it. I found Anastasia Izlesou especially inspiring as her work influenced me to try a different technique with watercolours that i had no experience with. Experimenting with this technique was a major part of my project as I continued to do this throughout, even making changes to my final pages to try and develop the techniques further. I enjoyed this experimentation as it allowed me to improve on my work and develop my use of colour as well as my use of line. The children’s book The White Hare, illustrated by Anastasia Izlesou also influenced the colour palette of my work as I wanted to use my new knowledge from previous workshops in order to improve the way that I use colour within my work.
This project also allowed me to discover what it was like to work professionally. This allowed me to become familiar with stages of making a book such as creating a flat page plan, a dummy book and developing a few colour pages. I was also able to learn how to use InDesign to put my finished double page spreads together as well as my cover. I also learned how to add bleed lines to these spreads.
This project allowed me to develop and use the skills that I had learnt previously in the year such as how colour can have a big impact on images and the way people see them, how composition is especially important when conveying strong emotions in pieces and how words can also have a massive impact on images through what they say and how they are presented.
A short review of two pieces of student’s work from the degree show at university.
For part of my assessment for uni we were given the mini brief of completing a review of two pieces of work from the third year degree show. We had to choose one piece of work from an illustration student and one from a student from another discipline.
I chose this piece from an Illustration student, Polly Colquhoun, because I liked that it was a 3D piece and I found it intriguing. I also liked the texture within the piece. This piece of work consists of 3 3D scenes that are displayed within a wall. The scenes are accompanied by text which are lines from a contemporary opera called Death’s Other Kingdom. The scenes are quite small but they are illuminated from within which makes them eye catching. All of the scenes consist of black prints on white paper or card. The scenes occupied a space that was quite hidden, this allowed the viewer to stumble upon these little glimpses of a different world. It also allowed the viewer to explore these pieces in the quiet as it was slightly removed from the rest of the show.
This work communicates quietly as the pieces are quite small and almost hidden within the wall. They are there to be discovered rather than there to exclaim their presence. This work is imaginative because it looks unique and consideration has gone into the process of designing and making it. The printing technique and the conversion from flat pieces of work to a 3D scene demonstrates skills. I find the piece captivating because of the little details within the piece and because of how simplistic and rustic the different components look.
The work is inviting and intriguing as it resembles little worlds there for the viewer to explore and experience. The work as a whole coheres well, all of the scenes were made using the same technique of printing and they are all in black and white which makes them fit together well. They all have text underneath which adds more intrigue to the work.
I chose this piece by an Artist Designer Maker student, Sofia Calatrava, because of the interesting way that illustration has been combined with ceramics. I also like the animated ceramic piece that spins to highlight the transition shown on the pot. This piece consist of multiple ceramic pieces that have been decorated with illustrations of faces. This piece is about personality and emotions. It portrays divided feelings. All of the pots follow the same design, glazed white with dark illustrations. A mirror is used to show the opposite side of some of the ceramic pieces, which also demonstrates the split emotion theme of the work. Some of the pots are quite large compared to others which could show that some of the feelings portrayed are stronger than others.
The work communicates quite boldly, the faces on the ceramic are quite imposing and hard to miss. The illustrations clearly show a split or a conflict of the artists feelings. I think that this piece is imaginative because of the combination of illustration and ceramics which is quite unique. It also demonstrates a number of skills which are needed to produce this work. The purpose of the work is to portray the artists self-perception and I think that this is communicated clearly.
This work is intriguing and slightly unnerving because of the stark faces present on the pots. It encourages the viewer to question their own self-perception and think about how they view others. The work coheres as a whole because of the uniformity of the ceramic pieces even if the illustrations differ. The work isn’t hidden in its space, its noticeable and confrontational in the way that it demands people attention.