Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Achievements ..

Friday came and went in a bit of a blur .. so much so that I closed down for a few days and went off to Devon with friends.

I managed to cross nearly everything on the list and am left with bringing my sketchbook up to date and mounting the 2D artwork.   As I review my sketchbook, I'm reminded of one of the plaster heads I made which now sits on my studio desk.  I named him Cronus from Greek Mythology as that is our pathway project this half term.  I'm pleased with the way he turned out.  He was painted with Shellac and then covered with iron filings.  I then sprayed this with salt water for a few days to make the iron rust.



Cronus
10 inches

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Missing Deadlines


I have always been a well organised, efficient kind of person and I hate missing deadlines, it's not in my nature.   I must have received a lecture on this very point when I was very young as I have a deep seated belief that to miss a deadline is disrespectful of other peoples' precious time!

So, with this in mind the To Do List below was organised to ensure that I hit the three deadlines looming.  Deadline 1: Printmaking - achieved.  Deadline 2: Photography - failed; but not miserably.  Deadline 3: a self imposed deadline due to access to the studios and workshops - on track but at risk.

I have done 6 etchings prints today and I am pleased with them but I was going to use one of these prints to produce my photogram.  I was trying to achieve an organic process from pen and ink drawing to etching - to photogram to compare the 3 effects.  I managed to print the etching today as I burned a candle into the small hours last night to scratch away at a bit of plastic with my son's compass!   However, the etchings are printed on damp watercolour paper which will dry under a board tonight, and then tomorrow the boards need to come off to allow the ink to dry.  This means that the print may not be dry when I come to take the photocopy and I don't want to risk smudging the print.  Therefore tomorrow, I am going to have use a photocopy of the pen and ink drawing to do the photogram tomorrow - a bit of tweaking needed tonight.

Photography was one day late and although it's not an excuse, none of the class was ready - so perhaps the timescale needs reviewing?

Looking forward to the weekend? - I know I am!

TUESDAY
Mount Pan Pipes onto Frame
Attach gold leaf to goat's horn

Develop Prints
Mount Prints (Moved to Wednesday)

Draw 2D picture in Pen & Ink (Did this on Sunday)
Scuplture - decide which heart to use (3 experiments in progress) - Moved from Thursday as we had two hours in the sculpture room today and all the hearts were sufficiently progressed.

WEDNESDAY (PHOTOGRAPHY DEADLINE)
Photography Class

Photocopy 2D picture (flip image)
Draw image onto Acrylic Plate

Life Drawing Class

Mount Prints


Scratch image onto Acrylic for Intaglio Acrylic Etching

THURSDAY
Art History Class
Tutor Group


Present B&W Prints for critique  (These were moved from Wednesday as I had one print left to develop during the lesson and then all the mounting yesterday.  So they were delivered today) 
Present photography sketchbook (Moved from Wednesday as the final evaluation had to be written up after all the prints were mounted).

ADDED - Do Intaglio Acrylic Etching for 2D piece.

FRIDAY
(Next 3 items have been moved from Thursday as I did the Intaglio Acrylic Etching)
Attach goat's horn to heart
Attach horn/heart to metal frame
Sand Oak for plinth

Photocopy 2D picture onto acetate (flip)  (Moved from Wednesday)
Photogram 2D image (Moved from Wednesday)

Assemble 3D artwork
Mount 2D artwork (may move this to the half term)

Pathway Project Sketchbook

HALF TERM HOLIDAY
Pathway Project Sketchbook
and a well deserved rest!

MONDAY, 31ST OCTOBER IS PATHWAY PROJECT DEADLINE

Monday, October 17, 2011

Catastrophe in the Dark Room

I had a very productive day today, although it wasn't without its own sense of drama.


I processed the black & white film in the photography dark room.  Unfortunately, the negatives came out clear, apart from a couple of frames.  Will and I did ours together and as his turned out fine, I knew it wasn't the development process that was wrong.  Allan, the Tutor, took a look at the negatives and confirmed that there is a problem with the shutter on the SLR.


So, with a sense of deflation, I purchased another film, signed out a College camera and set off to take more photos.  Bye, bye lunch!


There is a beautiful church at Kingweston that is situated on the edge of the hamlet.  It has good light there so I thought it was worth a try again today.  It was very cloudy, however, the sun came out just as I parked the car... so hopefully I will have enough good photos for the critique on Wednesday morning.


With some trepidation I put the film through the development process and it worked perfectly.  Thirty six negatives ready to print.  This afternoon I managed to print three good photos, so I only need to do another 5 tomorrow.  This will be the focus for Tuesday.




SUNDAY
Finish Printmaking Sketchbook
Gesso some more pages on Pathway Project sketchbook

Photograph Sketchbook Pages and load onto Blog (Move to half term)

MONDAY (PRINTMAKING DEADLINE)
Produce last mono print (No Longer Required)
Mount prints
Present Prints for critique
Present printmaking sketchbook


Develop B&W Film onto negative strips and produce contact sheet.
Select Prints for developing
Develop Prints


TUESDAY
Mount Pan Pipes onto Frame
Attach gold leaf to goat's horn

Develop Prints
Mount Prints

Draw 2D picture in Pen & Ink (Did this on Sunday)


Sunday, October 16, 2011

Major Deadlines

Tomorrow is the beginning of week 7 of the Foundation Diploma in Art & Design and we are fast approaching half term (Monday, 24th October).

Our first major deadline is Monday 31st October when our first body of work is to be ready for critique.  Our tutor, Duncan has reminded us, a few times, about making the best use of our time as the studios and workshops won't be available during the half term period so with this in mind, I produced a "To Do List" to keep me on track.  My God, it's long!!

Then I've tried to allocate time to the activities to ensure they are done for the various deadlines.

So, here is the priorities for this week.

SATURDAY
Finish the Black & White film in manual SLR camera
Gesso some more pages on Pathway Project Sketchbook

SUNDAY
Finish Printmaking Sketchbook
Gesso some more pages on Pathway Project sketchbook
Photograph Sketchbook Pages and load onto Blog

MONDAY (PRINTMAKING DEADLINE)
Produce last mono print
Mount prints
Present Prints for critique
Present printmaking sketchbook

Develop B&W Film onto negative strips and produce contact sheet.
Select Prints for developing
Develop Prints

TUESDAY
Mount Pan Pipes onto Frame
Attach gold leaf to goat's horn

Develop Prints
Mount Prints

Draw 2D picture in Pen & Ink

WEDNESDAY (PHOTOGRAPHY DEADLINE)
Present B&W Prints for critique
Present photography sketchbook

Photocopy 2D picture (flip image)
Draw image onto Acrylic Plate
Photocopy 2D picture onto acetate
Photogram 2D image

Life Drawing Class

THURSDAY
Art History Class
Tutor Group

Scuplture - decide which heart to use (3 experiments in progress)
Attach goat's horn to heart
Attach horn/heart to metal frame
Sand Oak for plinth

FRIDAY
Assemble 3D artwork
Mount 2D artwork
Pathway Project Sketchbook

HALF TERM HOLIDAY
Pathway Project Sketchbook
and a well deserved rest!

MONDAY, 31ST OCTOBER IS PATHWAY PROJECT DEADLINE


And with all this in mind, a little reminder about meeting things head-on and having a little determination


George (in Green & Red) going in for the tackle
A great performance and a home win.
Saturday, 15th October 2011

Friday, October 14, 2011

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Life Drawing No 1



Life Drawing is one of the aspects of art that I have been looking forward to doing.  At Strode College, Street, it is a fundamental part of the Foundation Diploma in Art & Design.  Week 1 was a bit of a wash out as the model didn't show, however in week 2 we had a female model.  The model was asked to stand on a small platform for this session.  This meant that we were looking up at her.

I really like these sessions.  I love the quiet, focused time to really stop and concentrate on the lines and shapes in front of you.  Chris is a really good tutor who gives guidance throughout the session.  I struggled slightly with the feet and hands, which he was able to give me some assistance with, and this struggle has continued into the other two weeks.  The feet are getting better, but the hands are just not big enough.  I have been taking time to look at nearly every paid of hands that I see in the course of the day and will need to try and practice some more outside the class.  

Our model maintains the same pose for the whole session (they do have regular breaks, otherwise it would be tough) but that period really does give you the ability to take your time.  My target this week was to slow down which I did, and it really helped.

This drawing isn't finished but I am pleased with this as it's the first life drawing I have done.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Sketchbook

I have sketchbooks coming out of my ears - well, not literally of course!  I have one for photography, one for printmaking, one for life drawing, and one for the pathway project - The Classics.

I have uploaded the first few pages of The Classics sketchbook.  I am not sure if you can see from the photos, but this sketchbook is not a new one but an old book.

I found a beautiful set of encyclopaedias at the Book Barn that I thought would make good sketchbooks.  I bought these following a conversation with my Tutor about how hard I it was for me to cut up an old book, as I have always regarded books as a sort of treasure.

However my Tutor made me think of this in a different way as he reminded me that thousands and thousands of books are pulped every year.  So, I am breathing new life into these pages by drawing, painting, and embellishing these old pages.

This is the front cover of the book which I will be taking a scalpel to when I have finished the sketchbook.  I am removing some of the cover so that the main design stands out more.


I think the book is apt for the pathway project as I have chosen Pan which is the God of Music.  As you can see from the front cover, there are a set of pipes (or horns) on the front cover.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Experimenting with Depth of Field

On the photography rotation our main assignment is to produce eight black and white prints with a theme of light and shadow.  Unfortunately, every time the sun has been blazing away, I have been working in the sculpture room on my pathway project, 'The Classics'.

So, in the absence of any decent rays to cast a shadow, I went out to experiment with 'depth of field'.

As usual, Mr P decided he wanted to be in the photos so I had to oblige!

f/20  1/50 

f/20  1/30

f/4.5  1/400

f/5.6  1/160

f/20  1/50

All the field are barren now except for the maize photographed here.  This is only used for animal feed - it's not fit for human consumption - don't confuse it with sweetcorn that we enjoy!

As I sit here the sun has set and the moon is now high in the sky, masked slightly by the clouds moving across.  It's such a beautiful sight, full of mystery and so alluring.


Sunday, October 2, 2011

Road Kill

It's not often I stop at the side of the road to pick up a dead bird, but yesterday I did.  When I took G to school (yes, he goes on a Saturday!), I noticed a dead pheasant on the road just outside the village.  So, on the way back I stopped and picked him up.  Bless him, he was still warm!  However, he was very dead and it is a shame not to make use of the beautiful feathers that he had.

So, I took him home and plucked him.  Then I buried him in the garden so that the worms can eat him and leave his bones behind for me. Then I can use these too.

I know it sounds a bit gruesome, but his feathers were beautiful.  Now I have a bagful of beautiful feathers to use for my art!

Apologies to the fainthearted.



Saturday, October 1, 2011

Louise Bourgeois, Tracey Emin: Do Not Abandon Me

I recently went to the Louise Bourgeois & Tracey Emin exhibition at the Royal West of England Academy in Bristol.

I'm not a huge fan of Tracey Emin, but I have to say I found this work very interesting.  The joint collection of 16 drawings explores themes of identity, sexuality and the fear of loss and abandonment.

What I found even more intriguing is that Louise Bourgeois created the initial prints by painting male and female torsos in profile and mixing red, blue and black gouache pigments with water to create delicate silhouettes.  She then handed them to Tracey Emin who eventually added to the work.

It appears that Tracey Emin was initially too scared to touch the prints as she state that "I carried the images around the world with me from Australia to France." Emin used fantasy to draw smaller figures engaged with the torsos and also added writing to the prints.

I came away with a profound sense of loneliness after reading one of the prints.  It was a print with a considerable amount of writing on the torso a pregnant woman.  The writing was expressing the emotions of the child and it made me feel very sad.

On an emotional level, definitely an exhibition worth seeing.


Louise Bourgoise & Tracey Emin
From the exhibition
"Do Not Abandon Me"