Make a drawing of a subject using the subject itself.
This was an exiting brief and allowed to explore a few new ways of using and applying materials.
I decided to stay along the lines of previous subjects ( plants) espetially as the garden is full of flowers and also i have a few dried specimens from lat year.
First i tried to use fresh flowers – while pretty to look at, when dipped in ink/paint the petals lost all the shape and mainly produced blobs rather than required shape on paper. Saying that, there is something intriguing about unexpected marks made using petals.
This example is an aqualigea flower dipped in white acrylic, sketchbook page was covered with dark blue paint previously ( page 15, A3) – some petals got stuck to the page , some of the shapes are still visible. Stems were used to make an impression as well as used as a drawing stick. I drew pencil lines into wet paint but found that they appear too harsh here. The thing i like here is the contrast of uneven dark background and white of the flower drawing.
Next experiment ( A3 sketchbook, page 16 covered with gesso) – I wanted to see if the colour can be used as paint. Here I’ve used drying rose and placed it on the page – the petals have fallen in a random pattern away from the stem itself. Using pencil i have marked the placement of petals firs an then lifted each one and rubbed in to the dry gesso, then the leaves and stem accordingly. Using the tip of the stem dipped in inks a some yellow was added and black outline as well. What i learned here – being a few week already the colour remains relatively unchanged which is an interesting discovery. Perhaps if it was exposed to light this will change but gives an idea that i can use petals for colouring later on.
Slightly off topic but this painting gave me an idea of using water as driver – i used diluted acrilycs here to paint an imaginary blooms, the stick was used to draw the image but larger areas was appliyed using brush. i really liked how wet paint runs and creates drips and runs here. ( Canvass, 30×42 cm)
Assignnment2 Piece 1 – Blue Poppies
I used Poppy flowers, stems, dried sead heads for the next drawing on a 3/4 of the A1 sheet, cartridge paper, acrylic inks. The actual Poppie flowers were red but as i only have blue, yellow and white ink i decided to make them Blue poppies. I dipped 3 flowers in water and applyed it over the paper where i wanted the heads to be, then dragged stems down to mark the stems. There was quite a large amount of water on the paper and this exactly what i needed – next i added blue ink to the centers of these puddles using dry poppy seed pods and waited for the pigment to move. Stems dipped in yellow was used to add some colour below; Some pigment was moved using petals. This technique of using water and pigment is not new and i have used it before – i find it fascinating, never know what will happen at the end exactly. Partially this technique is inspired by works of Barbara Nichols ” Sedimentary Flow”. I have came across her work a few ears ago and have attended her exibition in the Walsall New Art Gallery last year http://thenewartgallerywalsall.org.uk/exhibition/barbara-nicholls-sedimentary-flow/
At the moment the piece is on A1 sheet but requires cropping, as below. Overall I think this is a good use of materials and qualities of media used, and is submitted as one of the assignment pieces.
Below is the whole A1 sheet , next to poppies is the drawing Using Chives flowers and stems.
Using similar method as above – dipped flower heads/stems in water to wet the paper, and then using thick acrylics to apply the colour. Here some paint was let to dilute and some was added over dry areas to explore the variations of textures. I like the combination of soft and hard edges as well as difference in paint thickness here – they look more like alliums rather than chives due to size and shape of the flower head.
Sketchbook A3, page 18 – Chives, here i kept the size as close to real as possible and only undiluted paint, magenta and grass green acrylics. Also i have used a hammer to bash the leaves on paper to get soft imprint for the background – i really like the combination of synthetic paint and natural pigment. This is my favorite result using chives.
Getting Brave i decided to scale up and use an A1 sheet to depict Chives. I wanted to add some bachground to represent sky and air flowing through the flowers. The desicion to make this composition into a still life came spontaneously while working out background in the sketchbook ( Below, page 17, A3) – using a jar the circles were added , the idea was to have unrolled vie of the jar by dipping it in paint and rolling under the flowers.
Assignment2 piece 2 – Chives in a jar
Background: brush 2″ white, Ultr blue,magenta acrylic; water; chives
Jar: glass jar dipped in paint and the rolled over the paper to get edges and glass form
Flowers: Chives flowers – stems/leaves dipped in acrylics
Starting with the background the directional stiokes were used to add some movement and represend light/clouds/sky etc. Next I used glass jar and rolled it to get imprints of the edges and glass itself.
The flowers were added first and then using stems dipped in paint paint was applied to place them into the jar. The result – while i enjoyed the overal process and getting really messy and covered in paint i have a mixed opinion here. I like the idea and actually was quite happy with the result to start with, but during next few days the doubt crept in – do the look like chives? do they have to look like chives? is there too much colour? perhaps i need to crop it? is this too representational? and so on …. Below is one of the ways this could be cropped to make it a bit more abstract…
Assignment2 Piece 3 – Agapanthus
Next week I decided to make another piece – going back to the original idea i had earlie during this part ( I’ve mentioned it in the project 2) and use Dried Agapanthus Flower/Seed heads. They are about 1m tall , with loads of spikes and seed pods. I decided to go with less colour – well with only black ink actually and try to achieve a more abstract linear image.
I thought of using just white as the background but decided that it would be too straight forward and then i looked around and re-discovered an earlier piece. This (A1, black card, gesso, acrylics) piece was created earlied during project 3 – Narrative, where i was trying to create an imprint for a drawing of my dog.
I felt that this is exactly what it was made for – texure, overal shape of the gesso on black card, some colour ( blue) could be read as patches of sky and as reference to the Agapanthus flowers itself ( this ones were blue).
To start with I’ve used the flowers and placed them in different arrangemet over the surface – in my opinion using them as a bouquet did not really work with the background so individual placement works better. Also because they are linear ( marks) this work better as a contrast to the gesso print.
While douing the arrangement i noticed the shadow the stem throws on the surface – this was when the decision was made. Using one of the flowers ( all parts was used in the making the drawing) dipped in ink I drew over the shadows that were casted over the surface. To get a variation in shadows I directed a table lamp at an angle and the whole board (it was placed flat over a chair on wheels) was moved and turned around during the process.
during the process
The Result : I’s been a week at least and i still think it worked here. Even my family had nice things to say about the idea and overal composition which is a bonus.
It could be viewed at this ange also – it just gets a bit more “hard to read” quality.
on the side
Here it is on the wall above my PC – just reviewing before the submission day.
Overall this part was really challenging and made me realize more potential behind materials, ideas, working out and processes as well as directions that piece could take if allowed to become part of the process.
I think the Assignment pieces show the experimentation and exploration into use of materials and how they can be worked with. I am quite happy with the Agapanthus drawing and the way it came together; Poppies while may seem a simple method helped to discover spontaneity of pigment flow and that colour does not matter;
Perhaps i haven’t used my sketchbook as much – but i have used other surfaces for most of the experiments, so they are a bulky sketchbook on their own.
I have not figured out the Theme for the Critical Review and Parallel Project itself yet – as talked with tutor in part one, i am still thinking in the lines of abstraction, nature and human input, reuse/recycling and installation. At the moment i’m in the process of picking a starting point – i understand the earlier i start more time i will have, so this is the main agenda at the moment for me – get it moving.