Reviewing work so far.
Having gone back through my learning log and sketchbook as suggested for this review stage I can see that as I have progressed through the projects I have improved the record keeping of my initial ideas, through the development stage, to finished outcome. Step by step trials and colour choices completed during the first 3 assignments now give me a good base to draw from as I think about creating my personal project.
Questions posed re sketchbook work:
What approach to drawing works best for you? Looking at objects? Expressing a mood? Working from a postcard or photographs?
My sketchbook has lots of postcards, pictorial business cards, greeting cards, newspaper cuttings and so on in it. I have one or two photos but they are mainly on my computer and only printed as I need them. I have scale templates of ideas and forms that I might consider and several colour exercises creating different looks along with many small practice trial pieces, My own hand drawing, unreferenced to other source material, is fairly minimal as I relate well to other visual stimuli.
Which materials and ways of working do you enjoy most? Gouache paints, oil pastels, charcoal, inks, torn papers, or something else altogether?
I enjoy pencil work, both graphite and colour, along with Inktense and Graphitint pencils which when dampened give excellent colour outcomes. Fine tipped pens and thicker felt tipped pens have also become of interest after my recent Ken Done inspired drawing.
I bought a set of Brusho paints from the UK which I haven’t done a lot of experimenting with yet but have had reasonable success with the little I have done and I also purchased a basic set of water-colour paints a few months ago.
Which ways of developing ideas have proved most fruitful? For example, playing with photocopies, selecting parts of drawings and redrawing them at different scales, changing the colours to create different moods, using torn or cut pieces of coloured papers to interpret a drawing or using words to evoke particular moods.
Before I start any physical imaging I find it extremely useful to think for a while. As I walk for over an hour each day I use this quiet time to mull over ideas and thoughts, refine concepts, consider the direction I hope to go, colour scheme, sizing and perhaps some wording that might apply to the effects I wish to achieve. Colour choice is probably my first consideration as this sets the mood for the entire process.
Having read through this assignment some of the words I have in mind as a stimulation start point include: disintegration, decomposition, deconstruction and decay. I have also been considering: hidden, enclosed, unseen, shrouded and concealed. However, once I get started they may end up not applying as the work evolves. Meantime they are printed in large type and pinned to my work board.
I play a lot with manipulating images in Photoshop, resizing, combining, chopping up, rotating, rearranging and so on. These are then collaged together and colour is applied or they are cut and collaged with coloured paper. I like small fabric sample trials, paper and cardboard templates which are twisted and/or folded and so on. My drawing skills are limited and I’m a very visual person so I lean heavily towards playing with small-scale models of idea possibilities. I also record colour groupings that appeal to me, and also some that don’t, as they convey moods, feelings and meaning to me. If a colour scheme doesn’t grab me I find I’ve hit a large stumbling block before even getting started.
Which textile technique appeals to you most? Is it printing and painting on fabric, stitching into or manipulating fabric, or constructing a surface by weaving?
I thoroughly enjoyed the screen-printing section of this course. Having a dedicated area set up long-term for this was a huge bonus and I’m currently clearing a space in my workroom which can be devoted to other on-going painting work. I’m hoping this will enthuse me to explore this avenue more. Having been a long-term stitcher I’m used to keeping hands and work surfaces clean whilst working with fabric and threads so the mess of paints, water and so on is not my preferred medium. However, I can see the benefit it has in creating more depth and scope in creative work.
I find stitching and manipulating fabric very stimulating and ideas come more readily when I work with materials, yarns and the like than by drawing concepts on paper.