Saturday, March 10, 2012

Studio Saturday

This post is going to have a lot of photographs, so be prepared. I did talk about some of this and what is coming up on Thursday, so excuse the repetition.

First up is photography. I turned in my project that used photo transfers and lifts. We learned how to do this both digitally and using gel medium. I didn't really care for the digital process, so I only used gel medium for these. We had to choose something we felt strongly about and create three propaganda collages. My subject is on how technology and social media is taking over our lives. (Please note: I am not really proud of how these turned out and while I do feel strongly about this, I don't really care to create work about these sorts of things. At least at this time in my life. Oh, and she is trying to find a place where we can sell these, which I'm not really keen on, but what can you do?)

This first one was my initial idea and one I like the least. We were to find images online and alter them in some way before putting the collages together. I altered the girl in front of the computer too much that it's hard to make her out. Her expression in the original image is of unhappiness and the text is supposed to imply that people spend more time with their "friends" on Facebook than face-to-face.

Photo Transfer Collage

This second one is kind of a spin off of a drawing I did in another class. I notice in all of my classes that the students are usually texting on their phones or on the internet on their laptops. They do this instead of listening to the lecture or participating in class. One time a student even answered a phone call in the middle of someone else's critique! He didn't leave the room first or even to talk to whomever it was. I routinely do leave my phone at home or forget it's with me. Maybe it's that I'm of a different generation. I saw a girl yesterday who was maybe 7 and had her own phone. She was complaining to her mother that her friend wasn't answering. Most days, I would love to give up my cell phone for a landline again.

Photo Transfer Collage

The third piece is kind of hard to make out because of the doodling I did in the background. The couple in the photo are both engrossed in their phones instead of paying attention to each other. The caption of "Everlasting Love" is supposed to leave the viewer wondering if the love is between the two of them or with their phones.

Photo Lift and Transfer Collage

Our next project is on portraits and printing onto alternative surfaces. We are to prep them over our break so we're ready to go on the Tuesday we return. I want to pick up some handmade papers, wood veneer, plastic sheeting, and thin sheet metal. I will also be using some fabrics and have to select samples to use. I'm still brainstorming the final project as well.

In sculpture we finished up our mold projects. They aren't entirely done as the clay still needs to dry and then be fired, so you will be seeing all them again once they are really done. On Wednesday we had our critique and also put underglazes on our pieces. I took these photos with my cell phone, so the quality isn't the best, but it shows the mold I used and some of the final pieces. This is before critique and I had not finished the third. We made two-part molds and the hole at the ends is for pouring wax or epoxy in. If wax is poured in, that can be used to cast it in bronze. Bronze casting is something I would love to learn but isn't covered until Sculpture II (I'm in Scuplture I). I will be taking it if it fits into my schedule before I graduate next spring.

Two-part Mold

Molding Process

One of the pieces is a solid lemon that I sliced into wedges. After letting the clay sit for awhile, I went back in and carved a little so they looked more like real lemons.

Lemon Wedges

The second one is a pile of lemons. Here's one of them and there are six more that I attached together. (I don't know why this photo is so small...)


The third piece is a play on words. I thought of first aid when thinking of lemonade, so I attached a cross to the surface of one lemon and underglazed that in red. The rest of the lemon will be white. I'm pretty sure I was the only one amused at this and no one else thought it was as clever, but I don't care.

During critique my instructor said I should have made one of the lemons into a car, implying the cliche about bad cars. I'm kicking myself for not thinking of that one as it's another clever idea. Oh well.

Our next project is on sculpting the nothing. This is very vague and I pondered it for weeks before pressing him for more insight on Wednesday. He gave me a philosophy book to read dealing with this idea and a lightbulb went off for me. I may even start working on it during break even though we don't have to. He does want us to firm up an idea and make a small model of it. I bought some thing for the final sculpture though and just want to sit on the idea for a few days before diving in. I'm pretty excited and will reveal more about it as I start working on it.

In painting, we moved on to working in oils. I used to love oil painting but am finding I am not so fond of it anymore. I've moved on to loving watercolors too much that anything else is just not what I want to do. I will keep it up and maybe come back to liking them again, but I doubt I would pick up them up to work with at home. Oil sticks, though, I do like using.

Anyway, we had to paint a single object three ways: realistic, abstract, and nonobjective (just shapes and colors/you shouldn't be able to pick out what it is). My object is the common tomato pincushion.

I don't like nonobjective work so much and really do struggle doing it myself. Though without seeing this with the other two, a viewer may not know what it is, I just don't like it. I already painted over it, so this photograph is the only evidence it ever existed.


Here's my abstract version. I may hang this in my sewing room after it dries.


And my realistic version. I don't do realism too well, but am pretty proud of this one. It could use more work but I'm going to leave it as is. The large brush stroke that curves around the tomato bugs me too.


After critique on these, he asked each of us what we would like to work on. Little did we know that whatever we said would be what we were to work on in class and also show on Thursday. Mine was that I wanted to work on using tools other than a brush to paint with, like using a palette knife only. I had a lot of fun with it and may even buy different types of palette knifes to keep doing this.

Here's the one I did in class. This is the canvas I painted over and so I painting on a layer of white and let it dry a little before smearing paint on with the palette knife. I just wanted to get a feel for using it and then looked at what the colors were telling me. There seemed to be some flowers there, so I worked on defining them and putting together a scene. This photo doesn't do the texture on this painting justice at all.


He likes us to look at something when working, so to see if I could do this same way of applying paint, I did one at home and looked at a little owl I have at home. This one needs work for sure, but it was fun to try out.


Finally, in class on Thursday we were to paint the uglist painting we could. I knew this was a trick of sorts, because it's hard to do ugly intentionally, so I tried not to think about making it so too much. I started out by painting a base of acrylics onto a piece of paper. I let the colors blend and become whatever they wanted to become. It turned out pretty dark and almost forest like. Once that was dry, I took out a marker and doodled a creature on top of the paint. I wasn't going for perfection and just went with whatever my hand did. On top of that, I used glazes (thinned down oils) to paint in the creature and the background. I wanted the base layer and my outlines to show through, so the glazes were perfect. When I was finished, I actually started to think he was cute, even though he's not that pretty.


Our assignment for over break is to complete our master copy. I still haven't decided which Rene Magritte painting I'm going to do and won't be starting it until Monday. I also have to finish my sketchbook pages and find an object to paint ten times. Oh, and make a postcard to mail to him over the break. Mine will be fabric and I'm probably going to work on it tomorrow. I just need to decide what I'm going to do.

That's all for this week. Hopefully I will have something to show next Saturday, depending on how productive I am. For all my plans to spend yesterday sewing, I actually spent it sleeping and then running errands for Chad. My body just decided it needed rest more than anything and Chad has some things that he needed done that he can't because of his work schedule. I am going to work on something tonight though and am hoping to finish it before a deadline tomorrow. If I finish, I will share it here as well.

1 comment:

Pam said...

It's interesting reading your perspective on mobiles (cell phones) and social media. As someone who grew up well before the invention of mobiles, I do find some people use them in an intrusive way. Same as with social media, there are +ves and -ves. Your course sounds fascinating, delving into the different mediums!!! I would love to be doing the one you probably like the least... photography and digital media (if that's the correct word). Maybe they didn't turn out how you intended, but the message comes across well in your three projects for photography.