Collect, analyse & (re)assemble: Development in plan and experiments.

Going over this very quickly, I’ll highlight what my plans are and what exactly it is, that I’m doing for this current project because I don’t think I’ve classified it clearly. While my subject is called ‘Starting point’, it’s a collection of pencils. I would like to think that actually, there’s more than just one collection from simply looking at this one. It’s pretty much a collection with in a collection, with in a collection with in a collection. I thought this collection was going to be very basic, simple, but it turns out it isn’t.

The pencil collection has more to it, than it meets the eye. How it’s collected, the size, the number of bumps, scratches, marks and teeth marks it has, the patterns, its colour, its thickness, its type. I constantly think about how I’m going to portray these traits with in this project to help define what the collection is, or at least summarise it. So, my main focus with it has been it’s use and how they can be catagorised, sorted. When looking back at the term ‘Stating point’, a pencil is always there to take an idea from your mind and link it to paper. You take a concept and put it down, develop and create something new.

I could rant on more about this, but basically, I want to show the start and finish of how a pencil can be used as a collection.

Last time, I put forward my marks research, I was thrilled, but it led me to some new ideas on how I could take it further; in my sketchbook, I simply started to draw down energetic lines with a group of pencils held together. Moving them across the paper, then trying to recreate the patterns I saw from the research.

     

For the teeth marks, logos and any indents on the pencils, I had to experiment with how I was going to make that in to an image. I did start to brood over this idea quite a bit and I wasn’t getting anywhere; they could’ve been photographed and placed together? they could’ve been drawn out? I could’ve even photographed the marks and logos, edited them on Photoshop and then made them in to a screenprint? but my time was running out, I was also at home at the time, so the only thing I tried out was printing them by hand with block printing ink.

The print on the left hand side was one of my favourites, I liked the diamond shaped marks that came out of it. Those marks were made from one of the mechanical pencils I had– the ones with the rubber grips.  Each set’s unique in its own way, there’s a range of different marks, patterns and even when I was rolling one pencil across, they would make this nice, smooth, smudgey mark on the paper.

After, I decided to see how I can try out a 3D aspect, but then again, it would’ve come out 2D once presented on paper, anyhow, I did some testing of this before, but in the library:

If you have noticed, when changing the order of something; it becomes an entirely different thing to look at. The collection itself was organised in to seperate different colours, then changed once again. Then again. From doing this, I learnt that I could take advantage of this and then sepereate  every single pencil and organise them in to categories(As shown in the first photograph).

I continued this experiment at home, but changed it. I tried to build a model, that would involve the collection as a whole:

 

After speaking to Matthew about my ideas and how I’m putting my book together, I did at one point over the holiday felt that I was taking far too much time with the content and development, than the outcome of the book. However, from the book binding session from the last week of term, it allowed me to experiment with how I can lay out each image with in the book and what bind I can use. I have a vague idea of how I want it, but i’m not sure of what the bind would be called, if I combined two methods of patching the pages together. THIS is what I need to look in to, I also need to remind myself, that if I leave something to the last moment, I’ll end up with a rushed outcome and that’s not good. It’s no good at all.

 

 

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Collect, analyse & (re)assemble- Part 1

How we organise or do something always has a system to it or we always have a way of doing something, which we don’t pay any heed to. Looking back on this particular subject, I feel quite ecstatic about it, as it can go in many different ways. I can start to put in to consideration of how I’m going to present my collection. I haven’t quite clarified that here, yet, but I shall do so now.

From going over the series of ideas that I mapped out on a brainstorm, I’ve come to the decision of collecting pencils. You can do so much with them, that you don’t even realise. Some may state that they’re only for the use of drawing, but I can tell you that there’s a whole lot more to them than simply that; you can draw, doodle, make many types of marks, model from them, use them to draft, arrange them, catagorise them, build sculptures, use the sharpenings for art and even print the little teeth and scratch marks on to paper. I want to continue with this idea in mind, and focus the subject of pencils on the two words I used in our discussion with Adrian about ideas: ‘Starting point’.  

So, the term ‘starting point’, it could be that I start off with how we started off with pencils as a kid, or the typical functions that we often use them for.  I may present this in a series of different mark making techniques, but I did originally consider this idea and from that, I began collecting many different marks, patterns and textures as references, to help give me an idea of how I can put the pencils to use.

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Simply to give you a quick grasp of what I’ve been working on for the last couple of days, here are some examples of leave rubbings I’ve done with a few of the pencils:

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Something I found particularly fascinating about these tests were the different variations of marks, lines and depth you can obtain, depending on the way you move the pencil,  change the pencil or even the technique in how you press the pencil to the page. I chose to experiment with the leaf rubbings first, as it was a starting point that I remember doing in art classes when I was in year 1 or 2 of Primary school. It was one of the first things we would  do with that tool of trade.

While playing around with these; previously, I went ahead and started to draw anything that came to my mind when it came to pencils. It left me with some new ideas, in how we develop our skills with the medium. We can start off drawing a doodle —> then to a sketch —> and later on a detailed drawing.

Some things I may need to keep in mind:

  • What’s going to be presented in the book?
  • How is the book going to be presented?
  • How will the pencil collection be presented?
  • Photos? drawings?

 

 

Other posters.

While I had a little free time over the weekend, I really, really wanted to at least get down a poster idea for one of GOATBEDs songs, which was another song that I unfortunately didn’t choose for the final three songs.  I made a little sketch of an idea I had for the song ‘Yama-ha’.  This time, I wanted to try and play around with a different kind of medium for the creation of this poster and that medium would be Promarkers this time, as when it comes to this song in particular, it’s very soothing to my ears and yet, there would be other times where it creates this ball of burning energy inside of me.

I decided as this in a way would be still playing around with brush strokes, except this time it would be with the brush on the pen tips.

Concerntrating on the song, I notice that all of my other senses seem to shut off and only my ears are picking up on the sounds of the beat being created. I imagine myself being the only person around; the atmosphere shadows out and there’s an array of bright, vibrant colours that illuminate my path and all I can hear is YAMA-HA playing in the distance.

I made it so, the figure was being absored in to the cast of shadows. I used a normal pen for this, owing to there are times where the song has this very edgy sensation. I’m a little unhappy with how the kneck turned out, as I don’t usually draw the body form from this angle; it was pretty challenging.

After colouring in with more vibrant colours, I  was hesitant to leave it as just as it was. There had to be something that could fill that blank void. I thought about probably filling it in black, but that would leave the image looking dull. I found a photograph from the previous photography session, which had been an error of one of my tests, so I placed it down on a new layer in Photoshop and played around with the clipping mask.

I was frustrated with this outcome. It was too sharp and the line quality was terrible; I know i will never be satisfied with any of these kind of drawings, but the only thing that I was quite pleased with was how the colours bodly stand out among the shades of grey.

I set the layer to multiply this time. A bit nicer, different. It’s starting to grasp that edgy feeling I wanted.

I despised the corners around the image. They somehow made the image look flat; I didn’t want that, therefore, I used a soft eraser setting to lightly brush it away.

I had to keep thinking back to what I researched about in the project; how can I capture that raw emotion? how can I portray that? To be quite blunt with this, I don’t think the images for this poster are quite there yet. What I’ve obtained from this song is difficult to depict, and yet, that didn’t stop me from testing this idea out further. I considered that maybe, I could try animating all of these outcomes together to see what I get.

The soundtrack of our lives: Poster talk with Bill.

Another useful talk about how we can present our poster, and how we must always think about the ways in which we present and reflect our ideas. I briefly mentioned before that I’ve started to play around with those ideas and yet, I’m not so satisfied with what I have at the moment.

Not only did he talk about this, he mentioned that the poster needs to communicate what we want it to and he gave some rather interesting hints in how we can do this. It could be done through the use of words? it could also be done in the use of shapes as well. Shapes and colours are quite good examples when I think about it; just by squashing a square together, it could resemble pressure? gluttony? tightness? anger, maybe?

Continuing with the talk, he gave us some examples of posters that stood out to him, or had influenced others. There was this particular one that had struck my attention when it popped up; I was later able to find it in a book I found at the library and it was about Japanese poster designs.

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The palm of the hand is so detailed; it’s incredible. It must of taken a lot of patience and time to be able to create something so delicate. I also adore how subtle the poster is, it’s not flashy or too complicated.

When the talk was finished, we arrived back in our studio to continue working on the poster designs. I had a little one to one talk with Bill, and he suggested about making the text bigger, as the songs are quite bold and they’re different in terms of style. The names of them speak for themselves, but  I took this in to consideration.

I started off with a base template, it was just to draft out a vague idea of what the style of the font could look like. I wanted something scratchy, messy and not so neat and yet, this didn’t exactly resemble that at all.

Tried again. It was better this time; I wanted the text to be bold, big and striking. Though, I need to remind myself of what I stated previously about having the title being a bit quieter, as the names of the songs are prominent. The textured tones that marker creates are pretty fascinating, so I continued to use them, but instead of using one colour, I mixed up two colours that were dominant with in all three of the posters.

I was keen to the result of this outcome, as it was nicely blended in and I’m fond of how the colours smudge in. It would’ve been a better outcome, if I had a bit more practice with this technique previously, but as I needed to get these all done in time for the printers, this was what I ended up with. Nonetheless, this isn’t a totally bad finish over all. I was happy with it, just I could of played around with it a bit more.

The soundtrack of my life- 4/?

Returning to another talk about The Soundtrack of my life project, I will now present you with my thoughts, ideas and any other little adjustments that have been made.

With the song ‘Mr. Blue sky’, I mentioned previously how it kicks up these psychedelic images that have blobs of shape, or even lines that wiggle across? I continued to work with this concept in my book, but I found myself with testing out the lines which I originally thought would appear to look good, if they were to be laid on top of the first layers of colour.

It took a lot of effort at first to try and get the lines just right, but what I found fascinating was the textures the acrylic paint created while it was being pressed against another sheet of paper.

Looking back at it now, the lines remind me of the change in feelings for the song, or they could also reflect the change in the beat during the song. Below,  are the other two examples of the ideas I came up with while listening to the songs over and over. The one on the left is for Mr Blue sky and the right is for Year 3000. I attempted to make subtle hints to the music videos, such as the question mark and the game’s ship, but as I reminiscence on this, the use of circles and other shapes that go along with this really aid the emotions I want to depict, which are: energy, happiness, excitement and the other ones I’ve mentioned before.  Besides, the thought of the songs being energetic, and creating a psychedelic sensation; the word ‘retro’ registered with me, this may be due to the fact that in Year 3000’s music video by Busted, it starts off with an old game screen and with this thought in mind, I looked in to poster designers who used pixels.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So far, these two posters are portraying what I want them to, nonetheless I continued to take this further by drawing these again, but on A4 paper outside of my sketchbook. I always enjoy working on these kinds of pieces of work outside of the sketchbooks, as it helps me to develop different ways of presenting them.

Acrylic and drawing ink. I drew out the Mr Blue sky  idea out, it was going all swell until I was met with how I was going to test the mediums out on the page. The ink was terrible. It was utterly useless as the darker tones were always so lousy at blending with the brighter colours; I was disappointed. It was also a rush job. I used a large, flat brush for this and I couldn’t get the separate sections, also when I placed the paint down, the lines from the betrol finetip pen kept showing all the way through.

Brooding over how this was such a horrible test and what a big mess it was, I recalled another method, which was the linograph way? well, I’m not sure on what it was called, but it involves a little thing called ‘Masking tape’. It was an easier process as I was able to section off neatly the lines I wanted and got the first few tones of colour in place.

Testing it, I was ecstatic with the results! I even went as far as to test out the different kinds of patterns I could do with it and another thing I was quite fond of was the way the paint creates a bumpy layer, so it’ll help encourage the idea of a poster having a touchable surface, perhaps? Once again, I had to consider the song Mr. Blue sky, this emphasised an array of blue tones to lighter, more bolder ones, such as yellow.

Sara mentioned that the blank spaces involved were a nice aspect to it, and now that I look at it, I agree. It exaggerates that feeling of change with in the emotions and the music being played.

I’m planning on continuing this process, but in a larger scale to see how far I can go with these.

Looking in to abstract and contemporary artists.

I wanted to strengthen my research in to other artists for ‘The soundtrack of our lives.’. Thanks to a book called ‘The best of British contemporary illustration 2008’, I was able to obtain a few that has helped to broaden my ideas for the future, if I ever plan on coming back to this project (which is most likely going to happen).

I had several more that I looked at as well, but I only found them before I found this book and started looking in to contemporary and abstract art.

Jill Calder:

Jill Calder’s been working as an illustrated since 1993; she also deals with digital art and she lectures with the love of drawing, ideas, colour and ink.
She’s worked with numerous amount of clients globally.

There’s many reasons as to why I have chosen to talk about this illustrator; there’s something so vivid, colourful and original about her drawings that she’s produced so far. I was really admiring the bright tones she uses in specific illustrations, they create a gentle touch of emotion to the image that can be seen clearly; the lines used as well help convey that.

Observing closer, I would like us all to focus on the image with the cliff and the rabbit for a second. They’re quite blocked? as in the colours are solid ,but each shade is sharply built in to the picture to create curves, or to help highlight other aspects.

When regarding the progress I’ve made so far,  particularly on the poster tests with the mediums, I start to think of this illustrator, in terms of the lines that she’s used or how the edges of some of the objects in the image have this textured look to it.  I’m starting to believe that depending on the brush strokes used, they can assist the poster with depicting the emotion, for example, fast brush strokes could portray a sharp and edgy sensation?

Becca Thorne: While being another illustrator and also a print maker, Thorne’s illustrations are both bold and graphic.

Some examples of her work can be seen at: http://www.beccathorne.co.uk/Illustration.html

I have thought about using lino as a print method for the making of the poster, but it’s time consuming.

Back to the subject,  I adore the fuzzy lines that are an outcome of this printing method, they appear to be very unsettled.  I must admit that for the same reasons I’ve selected Calder to look at, is the same reason as for why I chose Thorne. She’s able to use colour and make it work well with lines and shape.

Takashi Murakami: Thinking back on Mr. Blue sky and Year 3000, he was the first artist that popped in to mind at the time. He’s a contemporary artist.  During the time I was re listening to these songs specifically, they create these mind-blowing visuals of colour and elongated shapes that emphasise this futuristic vision. I strongly think that Murakami does just this i n his arm work by using a varied use of bold, bright and contrasting colour.

All right. This is the last one, I promise.

Francoise Nielly: An abstract artist this time, and I didn’t find her in the book, but I went out and made a search of ‘Abstract art’, then found her work to which reminded me of another artist who did similar, though I cannot remember their name sadly.

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It’s quite interesting to see how just a few mix of blocked in colours is able to bring out so much with in an image. Not only that, but the colours used are able to change the mood of a picture, as well as the brush strokes used.

I may have to consider this further with in my planning. I want to start testing out the kinds of colours I can use to link my emotions to them ( I’m going to use Photoshop for this after the first poster drafts are created), this will allow me to further my practice.