Research for my personal project

Hey guys!

So I know that I’m a couple of weeks overdue for my next post, but it’s just been a hectic month what with other exams and stuff so I do apologise, but hopefully from here on out I will have a bit more time on my hands so I can post more frequently as I had planned.

Ok, so getting straight down to it, I last talked about how I had chosen the theme of environment for my personal study project, and that my next steps were to get on with doing some drawings that reflect which of my environments are important to me, and personally, I think that the results are awesome (if I do say so myself).

I had a lot of fun with the first experiment (black and white painting). I did this drawing from a photograph that I took of the equipment next to the sink in the art room, and used a technique called ‘impasto’, which means the ‘process of laying on paint or pigment thickly so that it stands out from a surface’.

(Helpful Tip – Always try to use the proper art terms when describing a piece of work, this skill will come in handy when you come to write your essay)

For this, I used only black and white acrylic paint, and I actually applied the paint using sticks! Like actual sticks from the garden! (I know… wild times right). I found that this was a really good way to produce a creative piece of work in a relatively short amount of time (which is a key thing for a perfectionist like myself). This experiment linked nicely to an artist called Frank Auerbach, who uses a lot of impasto in his work.

(Helpful Tip – Get into the habit of finding and linking an artist or two into every piece of work/double page that you produce. Showing that you are able to analyse other artists’ work and how they influenced you to create your own work is a very key aspect, as it is one of the four assessment objectives that your teachers will be looking for when marking your sketchbook)

Moving on, I decided next to focus on my garden environment. I did an oil painting of a pot of flowers that I took a picture of in my Nan’s garden. Now, due to the chosen media, it did take a ridiculously long time to complete, but in my opinion, it was well worth the time and the effort. As you can see above, i’ve put up an image of the real thing, alongside an image of my painting. So far, I’ve had lots of positive feedback from my close friends and family, but I would also love to hear what you guys think! (Any feedback is helpful, wether it’s positive or otherwise).

Well that’s it from me for today. As I said, I will try my best to post more frequently, but in the mean time, if there’s anything specific you would like me to write about or if you have any questions/comments about the work I’m doing, then please feel free to write in the comments section below. Bye guys!

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Starting the new project!

Hi everyone!

As you can remember from my first post, I mentioned that we were just about to start our second project of the course, so over the Easter break, I have been doing some research into what I would like my theme to be over the next year.

I decided to go with the theme of ‘Environment’ because it is very broad and can encompass lots of things.

(Helpful Tip – If you want to do Art at A-Level, it is helpful to think of a theme that will take you in lots of different directions, this way you won’t get bored with focusing on just a few small areas)

Originally I wanted to go with the theme of ‘Figures’, as I found out that I was rather good at drawing them (check out the images above), but unfortunately I’m not so good at portraits, so I decided to steer away from that (it would look kind of weird to just have lots of figures without any faces… creepy). Anyway, I realised that ‘Environment’ gives me the opportunity to look at a wide range of things, including figures if I really wanted, and I also had the chance to make it more personal to me.

So, to start my research, I went out and about in my local area and around my house and took pictures. Lots of pictures. Pictures of everything. (I may have got slightly carried away – I felt like a professional photographer!) I chose to take pictures of my environments, the things within them, and the things that mean a lot to me. The reason for collecting lots of your own images is so that:

  1. You can show that you have used primary research in your work (your own images rather than ones from the internet)
  2. So that you have lots of inspiration when it comes to planning out the next few double pages in your sketchbook.

My next step was to think of questions that I could answer through research of my theme. I created a double page of these questions in my book, so that if at any stage in my project i get stuck on what to do next, I can always refer back to them to get the creative thinking flowing again.

Now I have my next few double pages planned out (because I’m just that organised) I can start getting to the fun part of drawing, painting, and getting messy with experimenting. First I’m going to focus on my Art environment, which is one that definitely means a lot to me, at school and at home, to show the differences and similarities between them, and to explain why they mean so much to me.

That’s it from me for today, I’ll be back in two weeks, (I’ll be posting every Week A Monday), but in the mean time, if you have any questions about Art at A-Level or would like to give any feedback about the blog, then please write in the comments section below and I will get back to you. Thanks guys!

Introduction to Art & design

Hi guys!

So as this is the first post for the Art & Design section, I thought I’d tell you what the A-Level Art course entails.

The course is made up of three projects:

  • Project 1 – September to February – for this first project, you are asked to respond to a ‘theme word’ by carrying out research in school and at home, and to develop and produce a piece of work in a choice of media
  • Project 2 – March to January – this is your biggest project and it is entirely up to you what you choose to base it on. For the first 6-8 weeks, you carry out research on your chosen theme in your sketchbooks, and from then on and over the summer, you focus on your essay, which is made up of a minimum of 1000 words and 8-12 artist copies that link to your project theme (this gives you a better understanding of the topic and will gain you new skills that are influenced by other artists
  • Project 3 – February to May – this final project is your exam. You will be issued with another ‘theme word’ by the exam board, to produce research and a final outcome for, however, this time when you produce your outcome, it will be under exam conditions and you will given a time limit of 15 hours

So that’s the breakdown of the course, and so far my class has just finished Project 1 and we are about to move on to Project 2.

Continue reading “Introduction to Art & design”