Category Archives: Part 5 Time lines

Part 5 Overview and review against assessment criteria

Overview:

For the final part of the course i have started to focus more on a parallel project and Critical Review. I feel that one is informing another and helping to gather thoughts for the future projects and my practice. I am still experimenting in order to find best ways of expressing my ideas , some thing that i would of been afraid of doing in the beginning seem a lot more exiting and eye opening. Time seems to fly and i need to find better ways of organising my routine to make sure i can put everything together in a best way possible. I am planning on reworking some projects and changing a few works.

The course as a whole was very different from previous experiences but it allowed me to look at things in a different manner, explore more angles and ways of working, experiment, explore, be more aware and enriched my knowledge of the Art world as well as Artist’s practices.

Using thin gathered knowledge and finding my own voice and way of expression is the main priority. Parallel project is helping towards this journey. I have some more research to do and bring it all together but i feel that there has been a big change in me and my approaches, ways of thinking and critiquing myself. The progress i find important is that I understand now – research is as important as the practice itself. One inform another, leads to new ideas, investigation and is an ongoing process regardless of how “successful” of “finished” the work is at that particular time. I feel much more open to change and development, taking risks and building my own road to the future practice, seeing everything as an opportunity for growth.

 

 

 

review against assessment criteria

  • Demonstration of technical and visual skills:  Materials, techniques, observational skills, visual awareness, design and compositional skills

I’ve continued to experiment and found a few new ways of application, use of materials and combinations. Composition skills are improving but i need to find a way of bringing idea , design and process together to get a more visually impact-full combination, perhaps consider cropping or rotating the work to find a different angle.

  • Quality of Outcome:  Content, application of knowledge, presentation of work in a coherent manner, with discernment. Conceptualisation of thoughts, communication of ideas.

i feel that quality sometimes not exactly as i wanted it to come out but i am learning on my mistakes and prepared to refine what is possible and take any criticism on board. I hope that the overall ideas are coming together and i am putting them forward in a coherent manner.

    • Demonstration of creativity: Imagination, experimentation, invention, development of a personal voice.

    I have continued to experiment and feel that my voice or the way i would like to continue is emerging, i’m looking for a personal language that would allow me to express the inner feelings as well as explore the nature around me.

    • Context: Reflection, research (evidenced in learning logs) critical thinking (evidenced in critical review).

i have been more critical and tried to express my feelings during the process and in the log. The work in this project was connected to the parallel project and helped to inform the critical review. I’ve tried to be more aware and feel that it is all coming together.

Assignment 5

I like the visceral quality of drawing/painting – the connection between my hand, my mind, the medium chosen and support. And when this connection happens it feels like magic – it takes me into a different world. The process of doing becomes a new reality – thoughts spill out onto support and begin a life of their own. Big part of the process is a pre-work – i tend to think of ideas for a long periods, a lot of the times abandoning it because i loose an interest or connection with it – it dissolves in time. When i come to work i tend to work quickly allowing myself to engage with the making, trying to be connected with the process and express the moment onto support. As in my parallel project – intuitive painting/drawing, finding images and projection of inner thoughts/memories/feeling i decided to work on a piece that will emerge as the time goes by and create itself through me.

I find it exiting to not know what the piece is going to be – even if i do some sketches prior i tend to follow the materials and how i feel at the moment of working on a piece. For some drawing is a s process of replicating every detail  , but for me even when i just started drawing/painting is a way to express my feelings.

Just to mention – i have initially planned to monitor growth of Japanese knot-weed that i see on my dog walk. I started taking photographs of how fast it was emerging. The reasons i decided not to go with this – one is because it has been poisoned ( not for long though) and also i was not being able to visit the place for some time; another reason is because i could not figure out how to present/capture and develop this idea into something bigger at the moment.

Another project idea: last year we cut some wood for the log-burner, and the patters inside sometimes are just wonderful. I put a few pieces aside and started taking pictures of them in order to record how the surface will change over time. I am quite interested in the natural change/decay and drying out of wood/plant surface. I was collecting pictures since august last year, and uploading them onto my PC ….. last month my PC stopped working…  here is where “should have backed up all your files” really means a lot. Anyway, i somehow found one of the first pictures ( first below) and did a few today – the biggest change is visible on the last one on the right. It is exactly one year and 2 days between them.

 

I’m also growing an avocado tree – well, it is still just a seed with only a small root. I am photographing it as it is growing – really fascinating process, slow but unusual to experience. here are some pictures as it is at the moment. I’m updating them as it is growing. It is an image Drawing.

 

Drawing: Food inspired …

 

Thinking how i can connect time i spend on a drawing project and time i spend on something else i arrived at the idea of combining both.

I cook everyday – this takes time during the preparation, cooking, eating, washing up and of course deciding on what to cook in the first place.  Being Vegan myself , most of my food has a lot of colour and even though in general a lot of ingredients are the same i do try and vary the diet through variation and invention of new recipes when possible.  Because of this i do try and take photographs of ones that we enjoy the most or ones that just look pretty on a plate. As a result i have collected quite a few photographs of our meals.

The aim here is not to show what i eat but use it as a source of inspiration, the shapes the colours and of course the time i spend on it daily. I’m hoping to use shapes and information the subject provides to inform the drawing.

To make it as a time project I decided to make sketches of some of the meals and then create a larger drawing that  will be a combination of these sketches, time spent on both and a record of food i eat – i am planning to make it more abstract than straight forward at the end though. I do not have a million recipes, as we tend to come back to the ones we enjoy on regular basis, but definitely have enough to create a variation of sketches.

I decided to make the sketches quickly – same time as it takes to eat the meal; and then spend more time – similar to how long it takes to prepare the dish – on reworking it, and transferring on to the larger piece. Time of decision making and washing up will be used to decide how to put it all together at the end.

Main idea here is not to produce an exact replica of the meal itself but to capture it as a spontaneous response to the visual image and memory of taste experienced. Also the changes that go through food itself.

I’ve tried to use support ( paper, card etc) and materials suitable for the meals’s properties – for example  brown card for the Wraps sketches as the texture and colour is quite similar to the wholewheat wraps that were used, dry pastels – as flour, inks – thick sauce etc…

The aim here to get a collection of images that will work as a source for a final more abstract drawing for the Assignment.The sketches themselves , at this moment i am hoping to organise as a book. I decided to add frames to the sketches – “portionalise” them.

 

 

The Larger Drawing : “Cooking a Drawing”

A1 sheet of cartridge paper. As i was doing sketches i started to think how to bring them together into a one image –  using some of the sketches to construct it. I used carbon paper to trace my sketches ( outlines and transfer them onto the A1 sheet. Randomly but keeping in mind the composition arrangements and shapes juxtaposition. Starting with linear drawing and then build it up towards … Here is the pause – towards what? In line with my parallel project ( abstraction, found images etc.) i decided to allow the process lead me towards the result.

As i was working on sketches , parallel to that , i started to add elements to the larger drawing – things i found interesting from sketches , for example ink line and wash in places, glitter etc..

Using real food ( mushroom, peppers, herbs) : i wanted to add some real colours and shapes to the drawing, after slicing some veg and herbs pieces were placed onto the paper and then a piece of plywood with weight on top to get an imprint, hopefully.

There wasn’t that much of an imprint , just some colour and shapes in places. After some thinking, few more sketches, i was still looking for   – how to make this connected to time elapsing ?

Food has to be grown, picked, prepared for cooking, cooked, eaten, digested and so on…. So it changes quite a bit from small to pretty and then disintegrates in a way, but it does leave an imprint…

So i decided to carry on with “cooking” the drawing – usually i get a few products then decide what to cook, or chop them and then ideas come along.

Here i used mushrooms to leave prints of the underside moving them around to fill the space where i thought it would be appropriate( i use mushrooms  in a lot of meals). . As they dried the print started to fade but it was leaving lovely marks on paper.

Next i used ink pen to add some lines/ marks all over the paper and applied a wash to release the ink. I drew pencil outlines around peppers – by now they started to dry a bit but still had some moisture inside.

Using a kitchen hammer i smashed the vegetables in order to release some colour and replicate the eating process of chewing as well as dissolving of the product in time. Firstly i liked the colours as they were on the paper, second they were drying but not releasing much staining, plus the next step after prep would be eating i.e. mashing the substance.

I’ve peeled the plastic sheet off, added some gold glitter glue in places – this replicates the oils in dishes and that are left on the plates after eating – and then left it to air dry. I must say it smells delicious in here )))

So far the meals on the drawing contain most of the main foods/dishes/variations – snacks/light meals ( salad, rolls), main meals ( soup, pastry, stuffed veg) and dessert ( fruit cake) – I might add more , but at the moment decided not to over-complicate the image with too many objects.

At the end it is about time and changes and not quantity of objects.

The juice from smashed veg distorted the under drawing – i like this, as it helps to show the change that food goes through, as well as the messy plates after the meal itself.

 

Each layer had to dry before fixative was applied, dried, then binder over. At least a day for each layer – in a way this corresponds with the time elapsing between Cooking the meals and “cooking the Drawing” – just to mention here i cooked exact same meals for the duration of the drawing ( there were more meals in between, but they did not made it to the drawing itself).

I added green – as a contrast to the rest of the pallet plus to symbolise the beginning stage of the plant life itself; silver paint, white spirit, sticks and plastic was used to add more texture and symbolise the washing up process/time.

 

This was quite a challenging assignment but I’ve tried to continue the experimentation and combine it with time, process through the use of materials as well as the literal duration of making.

What i liked about this project is the way i approached the chosen subject – it would definitely be totally different at the beginning of the course. I believe that decision to use the literal time engaged with the idea and subject matter fits with the suggestions of this assignment.

The finished drawing can be viewed as a conveyor or melting pot that is changing and moving continuously – as the repetitive process of cooking and change of the food items themselves. Plus I believe it is going to be changing – smashed vegetables might still change colour in time.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Contextual focus point : Frank Auerbach’s portraiture

 

Frank Auerbach’s approach to portraiture is legendary and through it he makes some very interesting points about the nature of portraiture and of drawing. Research what makes Frank Auerbach’s portraits unique, and how he used the passage of time in them. Think about why he might have done that and make notes about how working from life differs from working from a photograph in terms of the way we experience the time spent.

http://www.tate.org.uk/art/artists/frank-auerbach-676

 

Frank Auerbach was born in Berlin but at the age of just 7 was relocated to London during the WW2 as part of the kinder transport, he never saw his parents again. At a very young age he experienced a great loss and reality of bombed out London – the ruins, fire, devastation, rubble. All this has a profound effect on him as a person as well as an artist. Broken lines, thick paint. textured surface and unfinished lines. On first impression i felt that his work is a continuous replica of visual reality and inner experiences through the manner of paint application and the use of line – he is trying to capture the changing world as it goes by in a series of overlapped marks and textures.

Auerbach is a prolific painter – he paints every day and produces a great number of works but his subjects are mainly the same – part of North London near his studio and a small number of close friend and family , for example he has been painting his wife for over 60 years. Each work is a continued process of revision and reworking – corrections, more paint, scraping off the previous attempts , changes of an angle and so on. Due to this way of working  most of his work takes a very long time to complete. While in earlier works he over-painted previous attempts his practice changed later, now he scrapes everything off and works anew.

His drawings are a collection  of dancing marks that create a visual vibration – the way he created volume and shape on his portraits reminded me of “blind drawings”  where the mark on support is created while the other hand explores the surface of the face, working together to express touch through line. In his case the marks created in direct coordination with what he sees during the time spent with the sitter.

So why did he choose to paint this way?   It seems to me that through continuous takes of the same features he is trying to “find” the real persona. His choice of poses – not usual but rather observed from a distance – tell me that it is not the likeness of features to be captured but the movement and changes that occurs to the sitter. His work is not planned or visualised in advance but is build during the time spent – his marks and immediacy of application, even reworked, is like a process of capturing time and a fleeting moment.

The complexity of his painting demand a closer look and lead to many questions – the more you look at the painting the more you can see. Time he spends on one work, sometimes hundreds of hours, accumulates in very strong images that to some extend can be compared to a movie or many photographs that overlaid in one one still shot.

I feel that working in this way allows him to become one with the subject and inserts a piece of himself in the work. Spending a lot of time with his sitters helps him to dig deeper and reveal the real person – not just a flesh but feel below the surface, reveal and capture experience they share and bring the portrait to life.

Comparing this method to working with a photograph demonstrates the difference in total experience during the process and the connection that can arouse between the sitter and the artist. It is not possible to capture all the conversations and experiences that happened during the process but allows the artist to become one with the sitter and explore the changes that occur between the takes. The result is not just a picture you saw but the accumulation of time, connection, experiences and emotions between two individuals.

On a personal note, I have come across his work before, a few years back, and can see how my perception changed. I feel that now i understand a lot more of what artist wants to say through his work and found a closer connection with the process as well as the final portraits. While personally i prefer his drawings because i am drawn to the line and marks he makes I can not stop looking at his painting. They feel alive and even though some stir  uneasy feelings in me upon viewing, i appreciate the time that went into the making of each as well as undeniable feeling of movement and presence of captured time in each.

Below are a few of his works:

 

Self Portrait Frank Auerbach, self portrait 1994-2002; https://www.artfund.org/supporting-museums/art-weve-helped-buy/artwork/8497/self-portrait

 

Frank Auerbach, portrait of David Landau; http://www.artnet.com/artists/frank-auerbach/?sort=12

Head of Catherine Lampert, 2003–2004

Frank Auerbach., Head of Catherine Lampert; http://www.artnet.com/artists/frank-auerbach/3?sort=12

Frank Auerbach, Portrait of Julia; http://totallyhistory.com/frank-auerbach/

Frank auerbach, Head of Gerda Boehm; http://totallyhistory.com/frank-auerbach-paintings/

 

 

 

 

Bibliography

 

 

 

 

https://www.tate.org.uk/whats-on/tate-britain/exhibition/frank-auerbach/auerbach-introduction

http://www.artnet.com/artists/frank-auerbach/

https://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/2014/aug/29/frank-auerbach-painters-painter-freud-tate-retrospective

https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/frank-auerbach-the-fearless-portrait-brixton-summer-sessions-tickets-65458773955

Frank Auerbach

 

 

 

Project 4: Time and the viewer

Aim: Make a drawing which forces the viewer to use time differently. This may mean a drawing which takes time to make sense of or a drawing that creates a feeling of a certain pace. The drawing may need an investment of time by the viewer in some way.

“Village of dreams”

For this project i was working along the lines of the previous exercise, and to an extend as a part of the parallel project, together with the previous drawing. I am still working on it as it is time consuming piece and elements are being added daily.

I wanted to combine imaginative aspect with my dreams here. Using Ink pens and an A2 sheet i started by drawing small elements that i saw in my dreams – not exactly but close enough. To make it difficult to read i’m using quite a small scale – to have more info in the whole image and make it appear as a tangle where things have to be found through looking closer and longer.

Some of the elements: cat crossing the road, car with flashing lights, meditation room( cube with a chair), bicycle ( my charity run), distorted buildings as if viewed when flying above or next to, an astronaut relaxing at home, space ships, play ground, washing line in the wind, water well, tree alley, garages as living spaces with plants and tv, melting  square with a fountain, plain landing with a person waving a flag, air balloon dropping bags with treasure, mountains and lake with boats, dog walker, delivery truck next to pipelines, clock and tangled pipes as a metaphor to changing time that loops, train going out of a tunnel, bug with eggs on a plant, caged rabbit dreaming of a house and a carrot, plates, jugs, figures, bird, fish, words and so on.

Most of the objects connect with the streets or houses and it is possible to follow the roads from places to “events”. It is not a map but rather distorted space where dreams float out of the buildings and realise themselves as spaces or subjects.

 

So far I’ve used 5,5 pens and around 20 hours – surprisingly how long it takes to work on small area at a time. I have drawn a grid as a frame with numbers and letters , as on a map for example, so i can make an index for things to be found.  I’m adding areas as i get some ideas so it takes longer than i anticipated in the beginning. But i do not want to just fill the space as it very easily turns into just “doodling”.

Reflection: I’ve asked my family to look and mostly the response is positive – some comments: “interesting concept”. ” so many thing to find once i started looking” “oh it can be viewed from both sides!”; and so on, also they keep finding things that are not there – making shapes and forms out themselves, which i found quite interesting because it made experience slightly more individual.

I’ve noticed there is an overall shape appeared – a cat? or a griffin perhaps, and this makes me think maybe i should not aim at filling the whole space but rather see what will happen as it progresses.

As a personal experience – i found process quite meditative, sometimes starting with one image it leads to another quite easy without thinking. This process of finding images and letting the process to direct the outcome works well with the line of the parallel project and i want this project to be a part of it, finished or not it is a developing space that changes with time.

 

I decided to add here one work for the parallel project. One reason is because it is finished ( for now) and i believe it fits with the brief of this exercise.

This is a painting 75 x 75 cm , acrylic on canvass. Title at the moment is ” Day and night”. Part of the parallel project theme intuitive painting/drawing and found image through the process.

short description of the process: Initial layer of colour was inspired by my garden and Californian poppies ( orange).

Paint was applied quite thick, using large brushes and other implements, textures were created while still wet. One’s dried a layer of binder was applied. I drew some flower shapes using charcoal , then using a layer of darker  colour and white spirit textured patterns were created following that a plastic film was placed over the top, then left to dry completely.

I came back to this in a few days trying to work out where to start, turning the canvass etc. I decided to carry on with the “garden”theme and continued adding to the initial drawing using white chalk.

Some time later, after a long stare, i used white paint and started to work out shapes as i went along.  As i was painting, standing back, continuing etc. i decided to paint only over the half of the suface – i did not want to loose the pattern completely and also did not want the work to become a mosaic. Diagonal felt right at that point so i worked until i was happy with the areas.

 

It is hard to explain the process if it is not planned exactly but rather generates during the making, so i recorded myself during breaks , some of the notes are in this post ( they are half in English and half in Russian, as these notes were made for myself rather than for public).

https://natalyablogocadrawing2.wordpress.com/2019/07/02/audio-notes/?preview_id=719&preview_nonce=1c426570fd&post_format=standard&_thumbnail_id=-1&preview=true

 

The end result – personally i really like it as well as it had a good reviews from my family; It is a work for a parallel project , but i think it works as an extension for this exercise as it fits the overall description – work that involved time spent by the artist as well as engagement with the viewer(looking for the elements).

“Day and Night”, acrylics, charcoal, chalk. 75 x 75 cm.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Project 3: A finer focus

Method: “Choose a subject which has a substantial number of detailed parts. Choose whether these parts will be repeated or all different; consider also whether the parts will be drawn from observation or invented. Remember that the original subject may not be primarily visual…. the imagery is secondary to the relationships between elements…”

 

When i looked at the exercise initially i panicked slightly – it has been quite a while since i tried to do a realistic detailed drawing as for most of the course i was focused on experimentation as well as “found images” theme.

Few ideas popped up as well as choices for execution – using grid or transfer paper or draw from life… I went through many photographs – subject was food, my own hands, microscopic imagery ( that was really fascinating), plants etc.. I even started a few drawings but as i went with it my direction changed especially after doing the research.

To go along with my parallel project i wanted to use example of “finding” images, abstracting and working out the image as it develops rather than selecting a real object at this stage. I really liked ideas of Extended doodling by Greyson Perry; imagination and building by Paul Noble; complicated geometric patters by Richard Wright – so i decided to combine some of it and invent a pictorial space from imagination and as i explore the space of the support.

As i used mostly organic shapes previously , here the choice was to play with geometric shapes and forms together with organic to create a complicated pattern/space with added textures.

I did a few sketches working out where to start and how to take this forward in order to decide how to build up the composition. I wanted to have overlapping and connection between various shapes and forms to arrive at a complicated but visually interesting composition as a result.

Using A1 sheet of cartridge paper and charcoal I began to draw shapes working intuitively , adding more as i went along for a few days. To add a bit of movement ( as if the shapes are moving through air) i smudges the charcoal following the lines in places or going over a larger area to connect the elements and get a tint on the paper – i can erase it later where need.

To add some tone and colour i used an Elegant writer pens to add a few outlines varying the thickness where i thought appropriate. Then the pigment was released by adding a wash. As pigment ( ink) and water mixed with charcoal , especially on areas where i rubbed the paper, i noticed quite pleasing textures appearing – kind of like erosion by rust on metal. Some elements were left untouched for the time being – first to create contrast , and also not to overwork the space too quickly.

 

I’m thinking of adding a contrasting colour, not too much, to the “holes” to get more depth and an effect of layered spaces. I used a piece of plastic and acrylic to check if this will work before painting on paper itself. While deciding on this i started to add detail on the background – because front is quite hard line geometric i chose to add a softer intertwined tangle of worm like pattern on the back. It will recede into the distance and create a contrast between front and background, as well as adds an interesting element of carpet like fibres or tangled up pipes.

 

 

Many hours later : some colour was added, background filled in, gold outlines added to some of the shapes ( not easy to see on the photo); i also filled in a part of the background using pencil – i haven’t decided if i should do the whole piece like that, i do like the darker contrast against the tangled piping.  I also framed a part of it to compare this , but still thinking.

 

 

It can be viewed both portrait and landscape – this changes the dynamism of the composition. Below, i think number 3 and 2 have a bit more movement, unless it is just because it looks different after drawing was looked at as first photo for a while.

 

   

 

 

Reflection:

I’ve spent so long on this project that i fills like i’m actually tangled myself. I’m still working out the best format for it to be viewed i think i like the photo number 2, but i would probably go ahead ad fill the background darker on the top half. This might create illusion of things flying away from a lower lighter half. It will only require a few more ( 10?) hours and could be erased if it does not work.

I think it would benefit if framed , dark colour, i’ll be looking to get one to check this out. Also there is a possibility of cropping and making more than one piece that could be placed together as a diptych. I will come back to it later, and review as at the moment i got a bit attached due to hours spent on it and want to see it with fresh eyes after some time.