Thursday, June 5, 2014

Mixed Media: Simplicity and Amusement

The flower was a creative and unique piece of artwork. When I was searching on Pinterest for inspiration, I found a flower with things in each of the petal and was inspired to create this piece. Despite that, I used my own ideas for what to put in each of the petals. I made this piece unique to me because instead of just putting basic patterns or designs in each of the petals, I made each an individual collage of things I like including music, swimming, family, food, and inspirational/motivational quotes. Furthermore, I took the idea I found on Pinterest and incorporated into both of the themes of simplicity and amusement. It displays simplicity because the flower is a simple sunflower and amusement because I included all of the things that I enjoy.
In order to complete this project, I had to learn new techniques and processes. Prior to this project, I had never done a true "Mixed Media" project. I had done simple collages in elementary school art classes, but I had never used gel medium, wallpaper, newspaper, buttons, watercolor, or acrylic paints in one piece or even on their own. Combining all of these techniques was a daunting task, but with Ms. Rossi's help, I believe that I succeeded. Using the gel medium for the first time was an awesome experience and I think that technique helped to pull this piece together. Also, it helped me layer the picture so there is an obvious background, middleground, and foreground. Cutting out images from magazines was another successful technique I used in this piece because they have a nice shiny appearance and have vibrant colors. Overall, I am pleased with the techniques I used to create this piece.
Several times throughout this project, I took a step back in order to reflect on my picture. The first time I stepped back to reflect was after I thought I had completed the petal with the ocean/swimming theme. At first this petal was just the water and the sand with nothing else on it. After reflecting on the petal, I was able to realize that by adding life to it (the dolphin) it would make it more interesting and aesthetically pleasing. I reflected many other times throughout the project, but the final time was at the very end. At the beginning of the project I had drawn in with pencil where I wanted to place the petals, but at the end the pencil marks were still visible. By stepping away from the project and using problem solving skills, I was able to cover up the pencil marks with more pieces of newspaper. After making that correction, I was able to complete my mixed media piece.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Painting: Sticky Situation

Practice with Value/Paint

Final Sketch
Final Product
This sticky situation project was my best piece of work so far because of my creative idea. The inspiration for this project was the pictures (seen above) that I found on Pinterest. Those pictures gave me a basic idea for what I wanted to do, but I expanded on it with the various designs and color schemes used. This idea is original in the sense that it is both relevant, but also very unique.

This piece of art proved that I am able to solve problems. Throughout the final portion of this project (the painting), I made many mistakes. I found things that some of the ideas I had envisioned were not going to turn out perfectly because of both the tricky medium and my lack of experience with it. Instead of getting down on myself and trashing the piece, I decided to reinvent the idea and take some risks that ended up paying off. Using paint was good to help solve little problems because it can be easily layered and covered.

I think this piece accurately portrayed both my skill set and my artistic flair or sense of style. This painting was not meant to have a pressing or controversial tone. I enjoy creating art that is relevant to modern culture and reaches a wide audience. Also, I personally find it more pleasurable to create pieces that are simple, but still represent my personality. When I first saw pictures of the candy lips and demos of how to recreate them, I was intrigued. I loved being able to show my brighter side with the vibrant color scheme and fun concept.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Up Close and Personal Project

I encountered many obstacles in the Up Close and Personal Project that pushed me outside of my comfort zone. First off, I had trouble drawing the basic shape of a tomato in my thumbnails because they are irregular and unconventional. This was discouraging and I thought I was going to have to scrap the entire idea, but I kept trying. Secondly, I found it hard to work so slowly with the colored pencils. I am extremely glad I did though because my piece turned out to be just how I originally imagined it. I responded well to the challenges of this project because I didn't give up easily and I stayed positive.

This project was the first time I ever thought to step back and reflect on my piece. Seeing the piece from a different perspective was eye-opening because I was able to see the areas which needed to either be darkened or lightened. In addition to that, analyzing each tomato helped me to be more successful in the next one. Before this project, I considered how the colors of a tomato would work together. I practiced blending the red, orange, and yellow colored pencils before embarking on my final piece seen above. That exercise proved to be an advantage because there was little banding or obvious separation of the colors.

My table-mates were an amazing source of positive and constructive feedback during all stages of this project. Before starting the final piece, they helped me in the brainstorming phase and to narrow down my ideas to the two best ones. During the project, they offered encouraging sentiments that kept me motivated to work to the best of my ability. I feel that I was also a strong supporter for my peers in their pieces. On several occasions, I praised my classmates and revitalized their excitement.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Exploring New Mediums

Sprite Can: Oil Pastel 
Lollipop: Colored Pencil
Before beginning the Up Close and Personal Project, we explored several mediums: oil pastel, chalk pastel and colored pencil. The first mini project we did was the soda can using oil pastel. I am fond of working with oil pastel because the smooth lines it creates. My main struggle with oil pastels was pushing the lights and darks because I felt like all of the colors just ended up blending together. There is not great contrast because most of the blue values are  too similar. Overall, I was satisfied with my can because I think I did a commendable job at making it look realistic, but I did not love it. Going into the second project, I was hesitant about working with colored pencils. I never knew how much contrast one can create using this medium. The opportunity to use Prismacolors for the first time was very exciting because  I liked being able to blend the colors and make the whites stand out. I think my lollipop was the most successful out of the three projects because I created a shadow, highlighted the lights, and it looks like a real lollipop. The final project was a candy in a wrapper using chalk pastel. I like the way that the candy itself looks because of the smooth transitions between values of blue. Despite that, I struggled with my hand smudging the paper and it ended up looking messy. Also, I did not end up liking my choice of using light pink paper because the white of the wrapper was not able to stand out to create contrast. The candy in the wrapper was my least favorite project because I found chalk pastels difficult to work with. Although some like blending the colors with their fingers, I feel like it made my project look more messy. These projects helped to prepare me for the Up Close and Personal Project because I paid attention to small details. In addition to that, I plan on doing either bacon or sliced tomatoes, so I needed some practice with drawing foods. If I could add anything to these projects, I would draw deeper shadows. 
Candy in Wrapper: Chalk Pastel

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Scientific and Contrast Drawing

Volcano Pen and Ink Drawing
When I first heard the word scientific, I thought of beakers, test tubes, and things you might find in a laboratory. As I thought about it more, I realized that I would find it more enjoyable and interesting to draw something in nature--a volcano. Before starting, we had to practice the techniques for pen and ink, charcoal, and pencil. I found the drawing of the bottles helpful because it helped me work on drawing three-dimensional figures and learn how to get different values using a pen. I showed contrast in this picture with the black and white in the trees which make them really pop out towards you. Also, in the volcano itself I darkened some areas to make others stand out. I chose pen over the other mediums because I thought it was more bold and unconventional. The other mediums were helpful to learn, but I enjoyed working with pen the most. I like the way the pen smoothly comes off on to the paper to create nice lines. I used contour lines in the body of the volcano and in the smoke coming out of it. Then, I used cross hatching to create some of the darker values within the volcano. Finally, I used stippling in the clouds to make them look like they were in the distance and not connected to the volcano. I took many risks in this project because I had never used pen and ink in a project before. Also, I tried to think outside of the box and not create something generic like an eye or a test tube. Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed this project and I think it was an excellent way to start the semester. This project gave me a good refresher on some of the techniques/terms that I had forgotten from Art 1.