Assignment Suitability for submission
Demonstration of technical and Visual Skills
I like the submitted print and narrative images, and am starting to get an idea of how to approach work using the techniques indicated within the course. The quality of the self-portrait indicates how far I have to go in figure drawing, as this is probably the most significant area that needs improvement in the submitted works. I think I have many more hours of observational drawing ahead of me before I fully crack that. (As my tutor put it at one point “I’m still stuck in symbolism.” Clearly demonstrated by the nose in the attempted self-portrait.)
I very much enjoyed creating the photomontage work, and am very sure that I will be approaching these techniques again. In doing this, however, I’ve also had to make a first real foray into the application of digital art. This became immediately useful in the submission of the sculpture bid. Without it I literally wouldn’t have been able to put that bid together in any reasonable form.
Quality of Outcome
The print images have a way to go to be off a sufficient standard, but have also come a fair way from my initial attempts. The leaf print attempts to deliver a message, but is clearly at best partially successful. The trace drawing’s quality is limited by the quality of the self-portrait that underpins it. The new self-portrait is an improvement over that of Project 1.3 but still has a long way to go. It is also too heavily embedded in line drawing rather than relying on more realistic tonal aspects. I will be trying to find the time to experiment with this approach further. If nothing else, I suspect that it would be an interesting way to consider the forms of a sculpture.
The photomontage images I am much happier with the quality of the end result. There are issues, but overall the final images have reached a standard that I am happy with – within the limitations of my figure drawing. The juxtaposition of drawing and has worked, with the drawing elements still being drawing but not clashing within the reality of the photograph. The dancing girl created digitally still has a bit more of a “flat” feel than I would like, but overall I’m happy.
The storyboard sits between the two. The story as a whole is quite basic, but some of the individual images I am happy with. I would like to have had the time to apply a level of colour to the images, using the digital art techniques, but time didn’t allow.
Demonstration of Creativity
To my mind the print work is significantly less creative than the photomontage, which is a function of the need to master the medium more extensively. I am still at a fairly early mark-making discovery stage with the print work, whereas the photomontage is based in a medium (pastel, photo editing) that I have at least used before. Similarly, with the storyboard I was able to use the fineliner, which I refined the use of somewhat previously, and so could concentrate on what I wanted to do with the medium.
In the print work I also attempted to put forward a message within the confines of my skills and the brief of the assignment. This conveying of a message was at best partially successful and requires more work and experimentation.
I am, at last, starting to gain some understanding of the importance of Context in art, but it still fits awkwardly with me. I am looking at a wider range of others work when approaching my own, but am still developing how I view and consider the work. The learning I am extracting to be able to feed back into my own work is still somewhat superficial. At least, however, I’m beginning to understand how this piece of the jigsaw might be positioned within the wider whole.
Although I clearly have a long way to go to reach a standard I’ll be happy with, the progress made during this part of the course is significant. I am starting to default to larger formats, which give a better expressive potential than the smaller drawings. My ability to “see and draw a line” (Edouard Lanteri, Modelling and Sculpting the Human Figure, ISBN-13 978-0486250069) has improved significantly during the course, which resulted in a significant improvement in my sculptural work during my time in Austria.
Possibly most importantly, the approach I am now taking to approaching a piece of work is substantially different from the start of the course 18 months ago. My concept of researching my subject has changed fundamentally over the time of the course, as has my understanding for the need for preliminary drawings as a tool for mining for information.
I still, however, have many areas that need significant improvement. Some of these, such as figure drawing, I suspect might be permanently true. As my abilities progress the standard that I wish to attain moves forwards to at least match the progress. In other areas I still have gaping holes that I am only now beginning to understand are even there. Colour, Composition and Context come into this category. I now start to glimpse why this is important, and am starting to work out how to bridge the gulf between where I am and where I would like to be.
Another area that I am just starting to understand that I don’t get is the consideration and analysis of other artist’s work. To a degree I am still stuck in “pretty picture” mode, rather than trying to get under the surface to better understand: Why did the artist do it that way? What is special, and how was it achieved? What are the specific artistic elements brought together, and how? Can I use these concept to improve my own work, and how?