Since I was a child I have been fascinated with ancient and medieval history and throughout the term I have been listening to The History Of Rome whilst I work, a fantastic podcast series that I highly recommend.
More often I am using digital elements to tweak my work.
One of my favourite concepts is the combining of historical figures and technological gadgets. In this case a Celtic Warrior clambers out of my iPad screen.
Although no different in the use of line drawing, this is the piece I’m most proud of so far in the project. I have taken a concept (combining history and tech), applied it to a specific idea (listening to history podcasts via my iPad) and executed it successfully combining relevant reference material.
I started the project by focussing on what I spend a lot of my time doing, playing bass. I was glad to be working with a theme that I was able to chose myself and have more control over than the previous two projects.
In this first stage I decided that wanted my work to largely consist of line-drawings. I also planned for the work to be figurative, as this is what I strive for. I enjoyed the freedom of using a larger A3 sketchbook.
After these initial drawings I felt committed to the project and got stuck in.
By this point in the course I was up to date and had produced what I thought was a lot of work. Starting a project late has been a persistent problem throughout my education so far. Until now the reason has been elusive, but I have discovered it. It stems from an unwillingness to become inevitably absorbed by the project… Once I start I find it difficult to think about much else other than it. Now that I know this, I can find ways of working around or with it. This was the first setback in the project before I had even begun, by procrastinating and therefore adding to the time constraint.
The final project was to select a location in Bristol and base a project on it, as a bid to integrate us into our new home for the next three years.
My ‘false start’ and second setback for the project came in the fact that the security in my chosen location had tightened up due to the Paris attacks… I was no longer allowed to pass through the gate without a ticket and was asked not to take any reference photos of the location for security reasons. A sad state of affairs.
I had to return to the drawing board. My third setback occurred at this stage in the form of two funerals, one of a family member and another of a friend.
By this point I was in trouble in terms of having whittled my time down to a dauntingly short period.
As I saw it I had to think of somewhere extremely local that was easily accessible. Settling in to the City was my main goal for the first term, and by this point (near the end of the term) I had began this process but not gotten as far as I hoped. The reasoning being that I spent so much time in my university bedroom…
This was to be my location. I would evaluate why I spent so much time there and look for solutions to the seeming problem of it.
The element that links the three of my 100 drawings that I chose for this particular piece is that they all are urban skylines of various scales.
I knew that this would be the most challenging of the three triptychs, as I am the least familiar with lino- printing, the technique that I wanted to explore when creating the pieces. I did however learn the most from this technique…
first of all I had some linoleum ready to use but it was literally the type that’s used on kitchen floors, I quickly learnt the difference between that and the artist standard. Secondly I realised that it’s far easier to pre-plan a printing session in advance so as to be the most productive. Finally I learnt the actual processes behind cutting and then printing.
The right and left pieces were created using the floor lino whereas the middle panel was made using artist standard, straight away you can tell the difference in the quality of the print. The textured surface of the kitchen lino was difficult to cut and came out looking blemished, a blunder that I used (I think) to my advantage in that they look symmetrical as a triptych and add to the atmosphere and visual interest of the pieces.
I preferred both cutting and printing with the better lino however as it wasn’t so difficult to cut and you have more control over how the piece will turn out.
I do plan to explore further with lino as a medium and although I’m not particularly proud of how these pieces turned out, I think the exercise was a success due to the amount I learnt from it.
For this project we had to select our favourite drawings from the previous 100 drawings project, deciding which ones would work best as series, a diptych or a triptych. Once I had picked my top nine to form three triptychs, I had to upscale them to A3 using a different printing, painting or pencil technique for each one.
I’ll publish the final images as I create them so as to avoid confusing you (and myself)!
These three are based on archways, a theme picked up from the stain glass work of Thomas Denny. I liked the flow of the images as they led into each other. The textures on either side allowed me to emphasise the link between them. As demonstrated on the left hand pre-drawing I outlined the pictures with ink and added texture with pencil/ graphite… Out of the media types I used for this project, pencils were what I was most comfortable with, so this was the piece I wanted to impress with. Orange was the colour used for all three sheets so as to focus purely on line, texture and intricacy. The gaps in the archways were left as negative space so as to not overcomplicate the image, as well as letting the viewer focus on the various archways.
Originally at the pre sketch stage I was going to have the ‘Tree-Bark’ image on the left, but after viewing the final A3 images together I saw it was best to have it in the middle, surround by the man made structures.
Although at a glance the two man-made structures look completely symmetrical, I deliberately made faults. This was a after a tutor pointed out that although these buildings were beautiful, because of the time they were built there were clumsy mistakes due to human error. The deliberate faults on my part were to mirror these mistakes.
I enjoyed the exercise and I’m happy with the final outcome of this particular triptych, as I achieved everything I set out to do and even explored some new drawing techniques and methods. The complex use of line, tone and texture is what makes the piece look intricate. I believe the individual sections compliment each other yet also work well as separate pieces. My only concern with this piece is that perhaps they do not quite fit the brief in that they’re not entirely abstract, although still have abstract elements.
Drawing is my preferred technique to use, this one went well because of that. I expect to find the printing and painting based triptychs more challenging.
We were set the task of creating 100 A6 drawings, with the limitations of using only black, white and grey; the use of only line and that they had to be observational and drawn quickly. The purpose was to get into a regular pattern of work and to begin training our brains to look more carefully at the world around us.
Here are my drawings:
Parts of the task were tedious but overall I found it useful and enjoyable, particularly the processes used. Certain drawings were carefully considered and executed whereas others were more intuitive and care-free, the type of media used often reflected the mood. Most of the 100 are unusable (as was expected) but there are a few I want to take and use for the next project, diptychs.