Painting with Collage (Unit 3)

 

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I incorporated both images and painting to create my collage, implementing the three relationships, juxtaposition, dislocation, and transformation to bring all the elements together. The juxtaposition is putting two different things side by side that don’t normally go together, which I’ve shown by piecing together an image of the galaxy and an image of eyelids to shape a human eye. This can also be viewed as transformation, which is turning something familiar into something unusual and disturbing. Eyes are something that we see very often in our daily lives, but by replacing the iris of the eye with the galaxy and only showing a single eye, the object suddenly becomes unfamiliar. Dislocation is when objects are placed where they shouldn’t be, and this relationship is created through the position of the eye where it’s hovering above an abyss of books.

For the painting element of this collage, I wanted to produce a dry texture for the background that contrasts with the glossy finish of the tear drop. To create the dry effect, I tried to stick to more of the ugly yellow and brown colors and make it look like a drought. The technique I used was really watering down the paint to make a wash so that the paint can drip down. I thought this made the painting seem more ancient and offered more variation in color. As for the teardrop, I mainly focused on blending the colors and reversing the landscape to resemble the reflection of an actual teardrop. The highlight of the teardrop was another thing that I concentrated on by attempting to make the white paint really bright and crisp.

The areas of my work I’m most proud of are using different types of media to assemble the final product and creating various relationships through the images. The combination of image and paint makes it seem as though the whole piece is a great story composed of smaller stories and details. It prompts the audience to think more deeply about how the two elements work together and to understand the theme of the artwork through the small segments scattered throughout.

The area of my work that needs the most improvement is the painting component of the whole piece. Due to the fact that I wanted to use yellow and brown paint for both the sky and the ground to emphasize the withered environment, the limited color choice caused the overall outcome to be less appealing with not much to focus on. I did act on the suggestion of adding a tint of blue to the background to lighten the color, but the effect wasn’t really noticeable. Another part that requires improvement is the teardrop. I felt like the colors that a chose was a bit too dark and didn’t really achieve the amount of shine I was aiming for. I could make this better by adding lighter colors, such as white, and creating more highlights.

The message I was trying to convey through my work is how we’ve attained so much knowledge, yet so many of us continue to be blinded by the lies society has taught us to believe. I used a collage photo of a tunnel of books to represent the knowledge that we hold and the eye is more of a straightforward way to imply that many people are blind, or oblivious to what’s happening around them. The image of myself being trapped in a teardrop symbolizes how we are encased or trapped in an illusion, failing to see the truth. The contrast between the vibrant colors and the bland background reflects how we only concentrate on the good things in life while ignoring to address the real problems even though they may just be in front of us. This is one way of interpreting my work, but there are plenty of other themes that can be passed on through this scene that I’ve laid out.

Personal Heroes (Unit 2)

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Photo on 4-25-16 at 9.16 AM #2           Photo on 4-25-16 at 9.18 AM

I chose to draw Marie Curie because of how she’s such an inspiration to so many people, including me. Being one of the most famous scientists, Marie Curie had made many contributions and sacrifices for her passion in science. She was responsible for the discovery of radium and polonium, dedicating herself to the fight against cancer. Although Curie had been struck with countless tragedies during her life time, her determination and spirit pushed her toward success. Even till today, she is remembered for being the first woman to win the Nobel Prize and recognised for her remarkable work in the field of science.

 

Devoting hours to drawing my hero has helped strengthen my admiration for her, making me wonder about all the obstacles she had encountered. With every line and wrinkle I etched on her face, it felt as if I was exploring another point of her life, the experiences that could’ve shaped them. Searching through all of Marie Curie’s old photos, I noticed how there always seems to be a glint of sadness and curiosity behind her eyes. It makes me question if all those sacrifices she made for her passion was worth it, yet it also motivates me to do the same and give up what I care about in life to achieve something even greater.

 

Concentrating on the details and shading on my hero’s face has really helped me achieve success in my drawing. The most crucial feature of the face is the eyes, so that’s the part I focused most on, working to bring out Marie Curie’s personality and show the “truth” that lies behind them. Not only does the shading create a contrast between the light hitting her skin and the shadow cloaking the side of her face, it also enhances the characteristics of her face.  Besides that, I think my respect for my hero also encouraged me to put my best effort into the portrait and commit to what I’m passionate about, just like what she did.

 

The use of the grid transfer allowed me to get a better sense of proportion and made it easier to identify where different parts lay. It also improved my observational skills by making me get into the lines with more precision. The grid method is an easy way to enlarge a photo into a drawing while maintaining the correct ratio.

 

Some areas of my drawing that could have been improved include the shading on the clothing, as well as parts of the hair.  Instead of creating smooth shadows that indicate the folds of the fabric, the darkened areas appear to be too harsh and unnatural. Although leaving the portrait half-finished was a style I chose to go for, I think more time could have been spent on the hair to emphasise the unruly curls of the hair. Overall, there are still many areas for more improvement, yet this project has helped me gain a deeper understanding of how the grid method works, along with various drawing techniques I can apply in the future.

 

Unit 3: Photography Themes

 

The theme for this photographic series is Childhood vs. Adulthood.

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To represent my group’s theme through photos, we decided to use objects that would remind someone of their childhood, such as brushes, crayons, and sand. Using these objects, we created scenes that would convey a message of walking away and leaving something behind, just like the transition between childhood and adulthood. An example of this would be the first photo where we scattered paint brushes on the floor and casted a shadow of a figure moving away. A sad and gloomy mood is brought into the scene with the use of the black and white shades, and we also used the effect of the shadow to generate a sense of loss and emptiness. In the picture on the far right, we used the aperture setting to blur out the background of crayons and sand, once again bring in the feeling of leaving something behind. With the flowers, my partner and I wanted it to represent childhood as there’s the sensation of being alive and vibrant. Youth is also portrayed through the blooming flowers and the same idea of moving on applies to the sneaker.

 

The rule of space is what we mainly focused on when producing our final work. In all three photos, we positioned the main focal point on the right so that there’s empty space around it. Our work is “original” because we made associations with our own childhood memories to construct each scene. We also  only used the resources that were available around us, which inspired us and made the product even more unique.

 

Our photographic series does convey the assigned theme, but it’s more obscured. Something I would change about this project is incorporating something that would remind someone of their adulthood. In our current product, all we’ve shown is the childhood side and the journey of leaving it behind, but not the full picture. Although doing this would help communicate the theme more effectively, I think that it would take away the freedom of interpreting these photos with personal experiences. In the group work, my partner and I played both the roles of setting up the scene and taking the picture. Instead of splitting up the work evenly, we simply dived into it and improved each other’s ideas as we went along.

Summative Photo Task 2

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This photo was taken by a French humanist photographer named Henri Cartier-Bresson, and it’s titled Derrière la Gare Saint-Lazare.

This photo makes the man appear as if he’s only a second away from his doom, from stepping into the water. The shot is captured at just the right moment where the man’s foot is right above the surface of the water but hasn’t actually made contact with it yet. I have a feeling that the photographer was trying to say that it only takes a split second for everything to change before you, and how nice it’d be if time could actually be frozen like the way it is in the photo.

 

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Some compositional rules I applied to this photo is horizontal and vertical lines, as well as the rule of space. Focusing on the half circle, I managed to capture the subject on the left side, but as a whole, the subject is leaning more towards the mid-line. At first, I didn’t really have a concrete message I wanted to share through the action, but seeing this as a final product, I think the image conveys a message related to your true identity. It gives me a feeling that there’s a backstory related to finding who you truly are and realizing the reflection you’ve left behind or the influence you’ve had on the people around you. I accomplished this by taking a photograph of the subject’s reflection in the glass instead of taking a shot directly of her. Besides that, I used a background that was dim without much color. It can indicate that the reflection of the subject is like looking into an unpleasant past and wanting to move on. The three most important elements that build this photo are the rule of lines, the background, as well as the lighting. The horizontal and vertical lines of the tiles add another focal point to the image and suggests calmness and strength. The simple background influences the frame by not taking too much away from the subject and making it obvious that the shot is of her reflection. The dark lighting then sets an overall cloudy mood to the photo, making it seem like there’s some deeper meaning behind the action.

 

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This action shot was taken with the application of the rule of space. I mainly focused on placing the subject a bit to the side so that there’s empty space left on the right. When I look at this photo, a message of hope and freedom emerges because of how the subject is positioned where she’s jumping in midair with one arm stretched up towards the sky. It appears as if she’s trying to reach for heaven in hopes to find answers to the things she’s questioning. Not only that, the vivid colors that form the background create a sense of happiness. These messages are achieved mostly through the action of the subject as well as the vibrant background. The three most important elements in creating this photo are the subject’s position, the background, and the proportions of frame. These elements work together to communicate various meanings and create balance in the shot.

 

 

Summative Photo Task 1

Summative

 

In this photo, I focused mainly on the rule of space, situating my subject off to the left to create empty space on the right. Besides that, I’ve also incorporated vertical lines formed by the elevators, as well as horizontal lines caused by the reflection on the metallic doors. This gives the entire photograph a nice effect,  dividing each part into sections.

With only one major focus point and a simple background, it gives off a gloomy and lonely mood. Not only that, the serious expression on the person’s face seems to be conveying more of a tragic message, like something negative is going on outside of the picture frame. The light reflected off of the elevator doors also creates a feeling as if the subject doesn’t exist in reality anymore and that she has entered an entirely different space and time.

The three most important elements in creating the portrait photograph include the subject’s expression, background, and lighting. The main thing that really sets the whole mood of the photograph is the person’s serious expression and how she’s avoiding looking straight into the camera. The bits of shadow visible at the corners of the frame affect the photo by creating a very mysterious atmosphere. This is then accompanied by the rays of light reflected off of the elevator doors, producing another focal point other than the main subject.

 

Afghan Girl

 

 

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Looking at this photo, I get the feeling of being accused of something. It’s as if the girl is blaming us or the society for what she’s experienced in the past with her cold, hard stare. From the tousled hair, the torn clothes, and the dirt on the girl’s face, I am reminded of the conflicts currently taking place around the world and the suffering that is going on. The story behind this photo might be a message to help us realize our actions and how it’s impacting others around us. This photo encourages me to be more compassionate and think twice when I walk by a person in need.

 

Real story behind the photo:

Afghan Girl – 1984 photographic portrait taken by Steve McCurry that was on the cover of the June 1985 National Geographic. The image is of Sharbat Gula, an Afghan woman who was a refugee in Pakistan.

“A Life Revealed – Photo Gallery – National Geographic Magazine.” A Life Revealed – Photo Gallery – National Geographic Magazine. N.p., n.d. Web. 17 Feb. 2016.

Composition in Photography

Using various compositional rules, I’ve created the following photographs:

Horizontal lines:  

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Vertical lines: 

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Diagonal lines:

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Rule of Thirds:

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Rule of Triangles:

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Rule of Space:

Rule of space

 

Repetition and Pattern:

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Form (Depth/Perspective):

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Combination of rules:

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(Diagonal and Vertical lines)

 

Hand Drawing Reflection

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For our Power of Observation unit project in Art and Design, we were assigned to draw on a photograph of our hands to express various meanings through those certain gestures. For my project, I decided to take a picture of my palms facing upwards because I thought this represented my religion. As a Christian, I believe that God has all the power and has control of everything in his hands, and this is shown through my hand gesture. Not only that, the background consists of water, rock, and grass, symbolizing nature and the world we live in.

Through the line drawings that I’ve done, I wanted to portray an effect of one side (the right hand) being our sins and how the worries in life can hurt us, and the other side being the place where we’re all our sins and worries are washed away (the left hand). I also drew a bridge in between the two hands to indicate that there is a path from being in an impure state to being redeemed. In my opinion, I’d say that my work is “successful” because I captured my imagination and creativity into a piece of work that can be meaningful to myself. I believe that good art work is simply just expressing your thoughts and emotions through shapes and colors. Besides that, I thoroughly enjoyed working on this project and demonstrating my values through line drawings.

Art and Design Post: Sketchbook and Bookbinding

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To assemble this sketchbook, we glued two pieces of cardboard paper onto a sheet of A3 paper and wrapped tape around the middle securely for the spine. Next, we hammered nails through ten sheets of A3 paper along with the cover we’ve just created to make nine holes that are each three centimetres apart. This is to start the binding process, which involves weaving string from the inside to the out, skipping two holes and then going back one, as you can see in the second picture above. After weaving, I simply tied a knot at the end, resulting in the finish product! For an extra step, I did a few sketches on the cover and tried to draw paint splatters on the page. What you see in the first picture is only what I’ve started so far.

 

This is an example of a piece of art done by Paul Klee. The book cover caught my attention since I’ve never really seen something like this. At first glance, it just seemed like the artist simply took random shapes and put them together. However, in a way, I think he did. The small black leather shapes reminded me of beans and the lines coming out of them resemble a plant sprouting. In my opinion, the purpose of this piece is to show life and how it begins with just a tiny object. The use of the green color gives the impression of nature and life as well.

 

In this age of ebooks and eReaders, are paper books necessary anymore? Why or why not?

Today, many people have started to turn towards eBooks and eReaders, but I think that paper books are just as important. Although eBooks are much more convenient,  paper books serve as a source of comfort. The feel of a book in your hands makes it seem as though you have a closer relationship with the words within the pages. Besides that, actual books give you an experience that you can’t have with eBooks. The smell. Personally, I love smelling the pages of books, and I think it embeds the book deeper into my mind. It makes it easier for me to recall that specific title and remember what it was like to read it.

 

Meaning of Creativity

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The reason I chose this image is because in my opinion, creativity is putting whatever you’re thinking into shapes and colors. This means that there are endless possibilities to what you’re going to draw, just like how there are no limits to your thoughts. Art and design links up with creativity because it’s the key to producing powerful and unique art work. You need creativity in order to be successful in this course.