02-11-2017: White Space - Absence, Project Development Process
01-11-2017: White Space - Project Development
31-10-2017: White Space - Manifesto
30-10-2017: White Space - Briefing & Experimentation
The brief simply emphasised on white space as an important concept used within graphic design. Though the statement may be true, I was still unsure of what white space meant. At first I thought of anything that I found white in art. As I branched through more meanings, I’ve been thinking of ideas such as negative space, and how blank spaces can either weaken or strengthen an image. The meaning in essence is a blank space where ideas and thinking is entailed, the transparency and emptiness shown in white space allows an open space where creative thought processes come into play. The experimented photos I took to start tinkering in order to make sense of white space were ones that I thought had repetition and a sense of blankness. I began drawing over the photos to show contrast and explore the extent of the photos’ blankness based on how clear the drawings were to the naked eye.
26-10-2017: INTERACT - Crit & Presentation
*More information regarding our interactive project is available on the INTERACT page of this Part 1 collection.
Today was the day that we had to present our final interactive outcome. Personally I felt that our interactive project was overall successful as the collaborative effort was nicely divided and there was a good balance between individual and group contributions into the project.
The feedback from the session received:
- “Really clear concept of the project in relation to the quote”
- “Decision-making was clear and the outcome was interesting to see as the approaches people took when making decisions were clearly documented”
- “Table of interaction could have been isolated a bit more so people can come up to the table individually”
- “Isolation of interactive project could allow participants to make decisions individually as some of the video documented the participants discussing their decisions with peers”
- “It was interesting to see the reaction come into play and it was even better that the participants came to the interaction without being called over”
- “Interactive provokes the message of being cautious when trusting information and distinguishing what is good for us and what’s not”
- “I wish there was a more statistical approach to the interactive as it enhances the experiment more if there was some quantity documented.
- “The audio played in the background really enhanced and clarified the project as a video. The elements tied together well with the interactive moments captured on video”
I was initially really nervous to present our interactive, but I was overall satisfied with the end result as a lot of people found the project interesting. I really appreciated that the feedback was really clear and concise in stating how the project can further develop. There was a great balance of appreciation and constructivism within the peers as everyone had clear ideas and comments regarding the project. I also really enjoyed the other interactions and my favorite was an interaction about being violated physically. The interaction was centered around a doll that was put around the Archway campus and the audience were told to place a pin anywhere on the doll to represent where they’ve been touch without consent. I felt that the message behind that interactive was very powerful and the issue was addressed with such transparency and simplicity because it was a way of briefly expressing an unpleasant experience when we’re not comfortable talking about it. Altogether, I felt that our interactive like the others had very powerful messages and communicated very well regarding the artist-audience dynamic as it taught me engage with the audience more when creating art. In essence, it challenged the idea of communication between an artist to the audience as it enhances a relationship that is beautifully captured by the moments documented by video. Additionally, the most important part of the interactive is ensuring that the audience gets something in return. Though what the audience got from our interactive was a piece of paper with a quote on it, it wasn’t about them keeping the paper as the quote written on the paper captures a hint of the participants’ thought process and entails the information that is kept with them. Furthermore, making the interactive all the more significant and successful.
25-10-2017: INTERACT - Shooting & Editing Process
Today was the day that we executed the interaction at the King’s Cross campus. The whole process was smooth sailing. I was quote surprised of the turnout of the audience as I thought that we had to call over some people towards the end of the interaction, but the whole process went as planned. The interaction we carried out was the modified version of our initial concept.
- Interaction Title: To Toss Or Keep?
- We decided to print a whole bunch of quotes ranging from different medium such as speeches, movies, tv shows, music.
- We laid them out on a table and placed a small bin in the middle of the table
- Instructions were stuck on the table telling the participants to pick one quote that they want to toss and one they want to keep.
- The tossed quote should be placed in the bin.
The editing process was quite simple as we wanted to keep the documentation simple. An element we incorporated to the video for a more artistic touch was that we played the audio compilation in the background of the video as an audio representation of some of the quotes we chose people to choose from. The idea was to show media as a source of information as a way to provoke participants to think about what they agree and disagree with amongst the quotes in front of them. We thought our video content and documentation showed a clear understanding of the direction we took to represent the given quote. It is merely a decision making process of what is important or not essentially allowing the audience to explore what to toss and what to keep.
24-10-2017: INTERACT - Tutorial
Today’s tutorial session was centered on feedback and solidifying our concept before executing it as a final projects. The notes below were take during the session:
- Concept of asking audience to illustrate is a little too much to ask of the audience
- Need to consider time and passerby’s as they may not actually have the time to engage with your interaction.
- We were focused more on creating an interactive that makes good videos content rather than the interactive process itself.
- The concept of listening to audio files is good because it’s a simple instruction for participants to follow.
- Focus more on triggering the engagement as opposed to just calling people over to participate, as this shows that the audience is willing enough to participate at their own choice.
- The interactive concept is inviting and could potentially make for great artistic content, but it’s more about capturing the moment we (as the artists) have with the audience.
- The artistic element is focused more on the moment with the audience as opposed to what the interaction looks like visually to the eye.
- The audio compilations that were initially going to be used as the information source that the audience was going to listen to can now be played in the video when editing and putting together the documentation of the interactive.
With the feedback given, we knew we had to modify our interactive concept. I felt that a big part that we needed to do in order to make the interaction successful is to simplify the concept as we realized that we were overcomplicating the brief. The idea was to translate the quote clearly through the interaction and it was more focused on communication rather than the artistic elements of the project. I needed to keep in mind that the visual elements come into play when we’re compiling the video. Altogether, the feedback session was constructive and it was easy to grasp because it gave more clarification and understanding to the project which was what my partner and I needed as we had quite a hard time tackling the brief with the quote.
23-10-2017: INTERACT - Brainstorming & Photo Representation
Today’s marks my first class since being diagnosed into the graphic communication design pathway. Our first project was to create an interactive project that encapsulates the idea of including an audience into your art. I felt that because graphic design concentrates a lot on communicating through art, an interactive project really maximizes the audience’s engagement with art as opposed to just observing and appreciating artworks.
The challenge of the interactive project was that the concept had to translate a quote that we were assigned as partners. Therefore, the quote was a starting point for us. However, the quote my partner and I got was really confusing when I first read it. The quote by Francis Bacon talks about books being chewed, swallowed, digested. My first thought was the connotations the quote has towards eating and mannerisms. I felt that the quote was alluding to the idea of information and this brought up ideas of censorship, media, explicit content and other social issues that regard media as a fundamental aspect. We felt that the connotations were a metaphor of how people handle information differently. We based the concept based on what is important vs unimportant in media today. It was a matter of tossing and keeping information that constitutes principles in people’s lives. I thought our concept had a lot of meaning to it however, we had a hard time testing the interaction and solidifying the idea to make it successful. We then went in to create a photo-mock up representing the quote and interactive project. The outcome was a simple photo of someone drawing on a wall while listening to something on their phone. This was to represent the activity that the participants will have to do for our interaction.
Potential Concept: Audio files as source of information are going to be played to the audience individually, based on what they heard we’ll ask them to draw out their reaction as a manifestation of how they handle the information that is being thrown at them. The end result will be all the participants’ drawings put together to show distinction and the contrast of people’s thoughts and opinions. The interaction will be held at the CSM King’s Cross campus as we feel that engaging with students will get interesting results as they’re more understanding about projects and the different activities we have to undergo as art students.
16-10-2017: Progress Tutorial
13-10-2017: Developing architectural sketches
12-10-2017: Fashion & Textiles - Your Intepretation
The class today was again, very demanding in time. Until the fashion and textile rotation, I’ve never been pushed so far in my drawing ever in my life. It was such a drastic development within the short week but it was really refreshing to see. I felt like the sketching and illustrating process gets increasingly intense during each class within the fashion and textiles pathway.
Today we were told to come in clothes that implied texture, colour and unique shapes around the body. Though the process was intensive, I felt that the activity was the straightforward as we were just told to draw the models using different drawing techniques. I felt that throughout this week, I’ve really expanded my perspective of visually pleasing drawings. I’ve come to be more familiar with unique approaches and styles when I’m drawing. The activity really pulled out more drawing responses from me especially when we were told to change drawing styles to the music that was being played in the classroom. It really made me aware of experimentation as the most important fundamental within fashion design and textiles. It takes so much experimentation to find what material is best or what texture is best fit for clothing and theme so I’ve essentially learned to widen my palette exploration when sketching and creating. If I were to improve on my illustrations and sketches, I would like to maximize my use of media with maybe more paint, glitter, or any unconventional drawing instrument to really enhance my creativity and thought process. In essence, though the activity did not really increase my interest in fashion, I definitely took in a lot of different experimentation and drawing approaches as tools to apply in the pathway that I’ll soon be diagnosed into. The fashion and textiles pathway has allowed me to improve my hand in drawing and to also not approach my drawings too seriously and precise as it has allowed me to loosen up my drawings to really ensure that I’m experimenting the best I can. Overall, these techniques are ones that I’ll always take to approach planning and drawing as a way to expand my understanding visually and improve my creative process.
11-10-2017: Defining shapes in patterns
10-10-2017: Fashion & Textiles - Your Data
Today’s session focused on textiles and I personally found today’s activity the most intriguing and enjoyable of the whole week. The data we collected for the class were a collection of five things that are personal in our lives. Because I’m an international student, the choices I had with me were minimal, but I was lucky enough to have enough memorabilia and small items that meant a significant amount to me. The items I brought were:
- Bracelet with a cross my mom gave to pray with
- Charm of luck from my friend that he got from Japan
- Giraffe necklace that I always wear and it belonged to my mom before she gave it to me.
- Football game ticket that my dad and I went to while he was helping me settle in London before going starting university and finally
- A box of guitar picks that I use to play guitar
I combined my items with the people I was grouped with and we explored different ways of arranging the collections together. We decided to create a chain with the items tied on the yarn and hang it from the ceiling to make it look like a ceiling centrepiece. With the different techniques and approaches learned from yesterday’s class, we sketched our collection concentrating on the shapes our arrangement created. This activity focused more on colour as the final outcome was going to be textile and pattern projections inspired visually from the collection of our data.
With a viewfinder I was able to find really interesting patterns from the series of sketches that I’ve drawn intensively during the class. Because the sketches were very demanding in terms of time, I focused on doing more than thinking during the process, as I was able to sketch with a blank mind and focus on executing what I’m seeing on to paper. The six patterns I found were very successful and also revealed how I was still able to find a coherence in my drawing style even if it was done without consciously thinking. It was very interesting to see the development to muscle memory when drawing even if it is within a pathway that I wasn't too familiar with. This class made me realise that if I were to go into fashion and textile, I’d like to specialise further into textiles and pattern making as I love creating patterns. The Indonesian culture is very rich in its own unique patterns known as “Batik” which is why I was able to innately incorporate the elements into my outcomes. Additionally when I took my patterns on to the projector, I was really pleased with my results and what I made. Documenting the projections was also really fun because I felt that it was a more “graphic design” element of the activity. It was also the first session that I didn’t feel the need to overthink my development and in essence allowed me to progress within my thought process. For future preferences, I would like to try drawing more often and applying the approaches to find patterns and transcending them onto different media digital or not to really experiment the outcomes and possibilities within my creative process.
09-10-2017: Fashion & Textiles - Your Surroundings
Despite my lack of experience creating projects relating to fashion, I was looking forward to experimenting and trying out the pathway. Especially because today’s session was held at the King’s Cross campus, I was excited to get out of the classrooms in Archway to find a new array of inspiration due to the change of scenery.
This project was focused on fashion illustration and we had to take inspiration from our surroundings and apply them to our illustrations as the final outcome. This was definitely a new way of working as I’ve never known so many drawing techniques and approaches that came within the practice of fashion illustration. It also opened my eyes to the unconventional approaches of creating visually beautiful sketches. We first had to sketch structures of buildings and infrastructure in the Kings Cross area. Although the activity was concentrated on shape rather than colour, this session definitely maximised my use of different drawing medium as the tutors heavily emphasised that each time we start a new drawing, we should be able to address it differently. The idea of creating illustrations is to allow all information no matter how different. To your own perspective, it may not necessarily be pleasing to the eye, and that is exactly how I felt about my illustrations because the outcome was not what I normally envisioned as my drawing style.
We then had to identify distinct shapes from our sketches of buildings and combine the shapes together into one drawing. Everything about this process was all new to me, as I’ve never looked at drawing in my sketchbook as a double page spread. The process was of course uncomfortable to me as it was me doing something completely out of the box. The structures we built out of paper based on our identified shapes was elevated on to working with the human body and how we can create shape in order to accentuate the figure. The structure I made was quite messy and due to the limited resources, the paper was quite flimsy and thus was hard to maintain shape on the model. I realised how versatile paper could be as it can be moulded and shaped to the extreme. The process then took me to illustrate the model with the structure I created in different ways. Markers were flying around and ink was everywhere, the activity was a mess in a sense that it was an exercise of speed-sketching. This made me realise the fast-pace fashion illustrators have to work in as they have to keep up with the models on the catwalk when attending a fashion show to create illustrations. The biggest aspect of today’s session is the different drawing techniques from continuous drawing, blind drawing and to switching media back and forth throughout the sketchbook pages. These techniques were used to imply texture, to emphasise features and to simply show a different perspective of aesthetic illustrations. These techniques are definitely a big skill that I’ve taken from this session. With these techniques, I would like to try apply these techniques when experimenting within graphic design (if chosen for the pathway). The process was enlightening and I’d only hope to obtain new approaches when drawing for future projects.
05-10-2017: 3DDA - BUILD IT
Of all the 3DDA projects, I enjoyed “BUILD IT” the most. The session really concentrates on structures and forms seen in buildings and architecture today. As we see the style of buildings gradually modernising and developing overtime, it made me question the purpose of extravagant building designs and features of buildings that made certain structures like the Gherkin, Eiffel Tower or the Sydney Opera House monumental. This entailed discussions such as visual elements of buildings to create shape, silhouette, shade and even forms that invites people to enter the building. When discussing the structures of theatres, the idea of acoustics and sounds came up as way to influence a building’s shape when designing a building. With all these great aspects and ideas being shared, it must always be considered the building’s fundamental need to be able to withstand the environment and protect against hazards such as rain, thunder and other forms of weather.
The project then went straight to building forms with the skewer sticks and masking tape we were told to bring for this session. It was definitely an easy-going process and fun because I got to group with my friends for the project. The structure making process was definitely manageable in terms of time and not too complicated, with the added bonus that all the sticks were of the same length. Therefore, it wasn’t hard to visualise and create proportion and scale, when assembling the structures. What I liked about this process was that my group didn’t have a plan on where to start, we just started building up from one triangular structures and began connecting the pieces together to essentially create an interesting structure. The process evoked a childhood memory of assembling legos as it requires the continuous process to assemble blocks to create structures similarly with the skewers.
After assembling the structures we’re told to partner up with another group to combine structures. Within this activity, I wanted to show the relationship between the two forms to show how structures compliment one another even though they differ in shape. Personally, my group and I thought we had quite a hard time working with the group we partnered with. This is due to the confusion and contemplation expressed by the group of how they were going to place their structure with ours. I thought their structure was simple and quite interesting as they’ve assembled the pieces to create movement within their structure. However, there were complications in placing the structures together because the position they wanted did not ensure any support from one structure to another. Despite the difficulties, our structure was able to prevail and was able to stand on its own. I thought the final outcome of our structure could look like a cabana with a modern touch as the top of the structure resembled an umbrella along with the angles that we’ve covered with paper to create more dimensions to the structure. I also thought that the visuals of the structure were very modern-looking and almost festive from some angles. The two structures actually complimented each other in a sense that it added a more symmetrical touch to one another. What I adapted from this session the most was how developing dimensions to structures in architecture is dependent on constant development and experimentation. Experimentation is a fundamental aspect within architecture and within art all throughout the thought process and art-making processes. If I were to change the outcome, I’d like to develop the structure and expand the shapes horizontally as we focused on making the structure taller with the group we partnered with. Altogether the struggle was worth facing due to the successful outcome of the structure.
03-10-2017: 3DDA - USE IT
Questions to consider throughout the course of the BUILD IT project
- Describe how your design was inspired by your observations this morning.
- What visual elements stems from your surroundings and how have you applied these elements into your outcome?
- Did I find observational techniques useful within your research? E.g. sketching different positions of people sitting, looking at form position, posture.
- Would you use observational methods again? Why? and how so? (Try approaching this question if you were a graphic or fine art student)
- How did your experience of the product design compare with your expectations? Which pathway are you considering for part 2?
- Overall are there any aspects of product design that you'd integrate in your other work?
This project essentially made me very aware of the details created in product design. From something as simple as a chair, it entails the idea that every detail that is incorporated into a chair design is there for a reason. We started the morning by walking around the Archway area and sketching the way people sit in chairs, this exercise isn't about the chair itself but rather the positions of people sitting that essentially reveals the different functions a chair can entail. I really enjoyed sketching process because the inspiration was everywhere, it was so interesting just to observe the mannerisms of people in chairs which I felt it revealed pieces of each person’s individuality merely based on how they sit on a chair. The specific aspect that drew me in were people that put their feet up on the chair when sitting. I often do that because I’m quite short and my feet at times likes to hang when sitting on a chair, which is why I found it easier to put my feet up and that position is essentially my comfortable position. So I tapped into that aspect as inspiration when creating my chair model and mock up. I wanted to create a chair adjustable for heights to ensure the that the design is inclusive for all heights. The visual elements I’ve obtained from my surroundings is merely from observing people’s positions, I’ve combined my personal preferences when sitting on a chair with how people sit differently. Visually, the legs of my chair model is meant to look big and quiet bubbly to allude to the texture of bean bags for chair legs. I wanted to ensure comfort on the chair design and used paper to create 3D legs that I later wrapped with masking tape to give the illusion of thickness and softness when you’re hanging your legs if seated on this chair.
Though, I felt that my final outcome was overall successful, the process I enjoyed most was sketching different sitting positions. The observational method revealed multi-dimensional perspectives and different angles that I could experiment with. Moreover, expanding my understanding of shape, support and the mechanics of a chair. The sketching process was a significance part of research for this project and I’d most likely use this observational method to create projects in the future. I have a keen eye for illustrations and graphics which is why constant sketching and drawings opens up my awareness of how design is etched into the outside world, which is why I found the observational method tremendously helpful. Overall, the aspects taught in product designs definitely expanded my skills for design as a whole. I’m personally interested in graphic design, which is why when looking at products, I tend to gravitate to packaging but in essence the ideas shared amongst the class made me aware of aspects such as form, function and purpose if I were ever to create a 3D project within graphic design. Furthermore, the experience was very enjoyable and insightful in a sense that I’ll have many more things to think about if I were ever to engage in a 3D project.
02-10-2017: 3DDA - WEAR IT
I’ve never really considered jewellery design as a possible career path, I’ve never experimented with extravagant making processes in jewellery design and done no further than arts and crafts with beads and a pair of pliers. The whole basis of the 3DDA pathway that the tutors heavily stressed was the innate interest to always make things. I feel that the area really emphasises a more physical approach of creating art and thus will allow me to expand hands-on approach in creating art. The “WEAR IT” project really centred on working with the human body to essentially push boundaries of what can and cannot be worn on the human body. The project was really eye-opening in a sense that it showed me jewellery articles and body pieces that I’ve never realised can style certain body parts. Additionally, there were body parts that I never realised could have jewellery or any body piece worn on. Jewellery to me have simply represented personal sentiments and familial significance and is exactly the reason I wear some of the pieces I have on a daily basis, so it was really interesting learning of how jewellery and has since elevated into the art and design world as it has built a big platform within fashion, traditions and many more.
Personally, of all pathways that I’ve done within the diagnostic rotations, I felt that this project was the most demanding in time. I felt the urge to rush the making process with the limited materials we used. Although, working within this environment, I didn’t mind the limited materials as it made it easier to think of an idea for the final outcome within the sketching and experimenting process. If I had more options of material, it would have taken so much time for me to actually make my final idea as the result of bering overwhelmed. The concept I’ve decide to take on for the project is a mouth cage that encircles the mouth along with a few embellishments attached to compliment the neck. The cages’s geometric shape stem from inspiration of the windows in the classrooms at Archway. I really liked how the shape looked when encircled. The process involved a lot of cutting and attachments to the body. I wanted to communicate the feeling of being restricted and locked which is why I decided to focus on the mouth area.
Overall, the making process was definitely daunting, I was initially unsure whether my outcome was successful or not because if not worn, the mouthpiece looks a little flimsy in structure. I did though enjoy taking photos of the mouthpiece on a model as it accentuates the model’s features. I enjoyed arranging the model with the mouthpiece and photographing it more than I did making the outcome. As I thought that I have a stronger niche in photographing than creating the project.
Though, when not worn I didn’t really like the outcome of the mouthpiece, but when photographed I’ve grown to like the mouthpiece when tied together with elements of styling and directing the photographing process. I feel that my mouthpiece could have definitely been improved with more firm materials and I felt that I could have planned the mechanisms of the mouthpiece more so it would be of better fit when worn. But the process definitely made me really the difference in shape when body pieces are worn as opposed to when they’re placed on its own. The planning process however made me realise the possible inspirations I get from my surroundings such as a simple window frame shape. It was really interesting to see how I’ve transcended a architectural part on to the body and it was interesting as I’ve created that certain perspective for myself in designing. Altogether, I still found the project eye-opening as far as my skills in 3D design goes. I’ll always be keen in perceiving 3D design through a graphic design perspective as a way to make the process more enjoyable for myself and overall expanding my newfound appreciation for jewellery design.
28-09-2017: Graphic Communication Design- Site Specific Type
Playing with language…. Something that one would often do in English class, or with a book of jokes.
I’ve always had a curiosity for fonts and typography, and how it constitutes as art. I wanted to find a sense of appreciation as to how letters and characters can be constructed around the same shape yet can still take different forms and layouts. When given the “Site Specific Type” project, the brief given by the tutors made me realise how versatile letters, numbers and characters are (as well as indicated during the “Lost Letters” one-day project). Letters and characters can be manipulated to the extent where they lose its functionality as a letter- I love that! This project however made me focused on the relationship of typography with my surroundings. Just by studying the architecture of the Archway campus and different structures around me, I could spot different areas that reminded me of a phrase or a word that connects well with different areas of Archway both figuratively and literally.
I chose to explore the stairwell area outside the graphic design classroom because I really liked the industrial look the area had. The industrial nature of the stairwell area was “aesthetically dull” in a sense that most things in the area were grey, however this made for a good ‘canvas’ to work with as there were many “grey” areas that can be used as a space to place text that can essentially appear to enhance the aesthetics of the setting. I wanted to create a text on the site that essentially fits the theme and colour palette that the space I chose gave off.
My favourite part of the project was sketching different areas and structures because I felt that the areas that I made line drawings of was my response to how the little spaces and areas inspired me. The subject of my sketches were an indication of how it inspires me artistically. Although the spaces I chose as inspiration and research were dull in appearance, I wanted to see how I could enhance the space with the text and font that I was going to create and thus implies the reasoning behind my decision. While most students chose large scale spaces, I decided to work with a small space as the space can be manipulated to look large when photographed.
Fortunately, I was very happy with the final outcome of my project as I was able to incorporate my idea into the small space that I chose. Initially, I selected a large scale space that situated right in the middle of the staircase, however another student was already using that space and thus I had to think fast. Luckily, I had more sketches of the space that I could choose from. The phrase I captioned my space with wasI , “It all goes down from here” as it follows the motion of the water pipes that pointing downwards present in my selected space. From a symbolic stance, I wanted to metaphorically address oil spills as an issue through my text and thus why wrote my text in a bubble form to represent the shape of slime moreover placing the text on the water pipes. I felt that overall, the message I communicated was effective in a way that I chose a space that complimented the text well. Although viewers may not necessarily grasp the issue of oil-spills I purposely arranged the text vertically to follow the motion and direction of the water pipes to evoke a more literal interpretation of the text that I created on the site. Therefore, ensuring both a literal a figurative interpretation that viewers can comprehend. Additionally, the time we were given to work on the project was not a big problem this time round as the text-making process was manageable within the time limit. Though the process involved simple art-making methods such as painting the letters with black ink, cutting the text and arranging them on site, I found the simple methods effective within the context of this site specific type project. Overall making the final image outcome and the process successful as a whole.
26-09-2017: Graphic Communication Design- Lost Letters
Today’s project was titled, “Lost Letters”, a way of finding shape and illustrative figures by looking at a letter and/or a number without it spelling anything, therefore it got me to appreciate the shape and form of the letter merely based on its aesthetics and appearance as opposed to a character with the function of forming words or sentences.
Because the project is directly connected to illustration, I was quite nervous as I’ve never worked with illustration. I’ve only gone to the lengths of drawing figures as doodles but not so much as an art piece. Yet, due to my deep connection and love I have with childhood figures, Disney, comics and characters, I was keen on learning how to illustrate instead of just being interested in illustrations. This marks the first time I’ve worked with printmaking; I’ve worked on Lino prints but have never experienced the process of print-making often used by illustrators. I’ve always considered myself to think illustratively and imaginatively though I’ve never tried my hand in drawing illustrations or illustration as a possible career path, which is why I was looking forward to the project as I was deeply considering if illustration was a possibility for me as I progress in the course.
I was very keen on creating the image and sketch plan for the “3” character I was assigned. From a chef’s hat, a ‘hilly’ island to a man’s belly. I enjoyed sketching images from the character I got that the ideas I had went beyond the time limit we had to brainstorm and plan. I found such a success in planning and developing the idea that time was passing me by. However, the next point of the process was very exhausting due the need to rush my work a bit.
The final image outcome I created was not to my liking. I didn’t think my print as a whole was successful as it did not execute what I planned and initially visualised. The concept I created was that the “3” would expand into a number of roads intertwining with one another. I added a few details of cars and trucks on the roads. I thought the arrangement and placement of the roads were successful because I took the number I was assigned and expand the shape to fill the whole frame I had to print on. However, it was a matter of executing the print when creating the stencils that I struggled with the most. Because I drew my illustration from a birds-eye-view point, the details of the cars and road marks were very intricate in detail, therefore it took the most time to cut and carve as the shapes were very small and needed extra attention rather than the big shapes I had to cut to create the stencil. Given the time limit, I was not able to print much with the red ink. The stencil of the cars appeared to be very blotchy and slightly distorted in shape. Moreover to improve, I believe that it was just a matter of time-management that I needed to work on in order to execute my vision creatively in an effective way. I used black printing ink to print the roads and I found that aspect of my illustration successful as the roads’ shape connected with the lost letter very well, thus indicating the good use of the number’s shape and composition.
Despite the results of my print, I had the opportunity to bring my concept to life by creating an animation based on the print that I’ve created. Since my idea were intertwining roads with cars, it was very easy to create movement with the print I created. The animation I created portrays traffic and cars driving along the roads as if it’s a highway. I wanted to convey the noise and commotion that comes with driving, further showcasing the animated nature of a highway setting. I also relied on sound effects to enhance my animation. The animation in essence (literally) brought my print to life despite the weak execution of my idea. I approached the animating process as a way to redeem the idea I had the intention of showing through my print and channeled it into the short animation that I created that I’ve overall very happy with.
Moreover, I had a hard time with print-making however, I believe that if I committed to my idea more without hesitating I could pull out a better illustration with the use of print-making. Additionally, although I didn’t deem my print successful, I could still imagine myself working in illustration or animation, thus showing how my failures still allow me to approach illustration positively as an opportunity.
25-09-2017: Graphic Communication Design - Poetic Cardboard
As I entered the second pathway within my diagnostic course, I was very excited as graphic communication design is the pathway that I am most interested in. Despite that, I still had a hard time of what graphic design actually means as it can mean different things just by the fact that graphic communication design integrates with many areas of arts and other subjects such as science, history, geography and many more. I’m most fascinated with the idea that graphic communication design foremost COMMUNICATES meaning in an art whether it has a function, purpose or is simply there for display purposes.
The poetic cardboard project was a way of manifesting photography and moving image by means to convey a message and meaning towards the audience. It was a project where I had to tap into my surroundings and knowledge of what is happening in the world today. I was excited to be able to work with photography and video, as I photograph places and settings frequently. However, the project came with the challenge of being partnered with another student. Although I was excited to make this project with total creative control, I knew that if I wanted to do art direction or pursue any career within graphics or in any specialised area as a matter of fact, I have to work on interacting and working with others, therefore I approached the partnership willingly and open-mindedly. My partner and I were assigned the words, “social environment”. Before even brainstorming and defining, we both knew that the phrase can communicate endless options and ideas. The whole world in essence is very connected to social environment. My partner and I did not shy away from integrating topics such as politics, technology, social, environmental issues. The challenge was deciding which direction were we going to take the phrase and how we plan to execute the message.
Our final outcome of the poetic cardboard was a photograph of give girls each standing on a staircase step lined up behind one another with tape on their mouths. We photoshopped an arrow often seen in (economic graphs and statistics) made from crumpled brown cardboard and placed them on top of the girl’s heads on the photograph to emphasise the decline, focusing on the crash and descending order at which the girls were standing in. We had the intention of communicating not only a social but a personal message through a sad and cynical nature. Contextual ideas worked very well in our favour as my partner and I are both of Asian backgrounds, making the process all the more relatable and easier in shaping a concept and background for the outcome. We took “social environment” towards the direction of feminism and the deteriorating ideas society has on women, further communicating the decline of women as opposed to the progression that people often publicise, foremost in Asian countries. Moreover, we wanted to say that even though the future for women is moving forward, there is still a lot of work that needs to be done as the idea of women progression can be perceived as mere propaganda for developed countries, whereas there are still countries that have not achieved such progression and development within the women’s roles, therefore affecting the environments of women as individuals.
Although the idea and conceptual background was very present and successfully evident in our final outcome, I felt that the craft of the photograph and graphics could have been thought out better. For instance, it was suggested by the tutor that we could have gotten the models in the photograph to hold the arrow we create instead of digitally placing the arrows, it would have made the message more powerful just by refining details of how the arrow should be arranged- digitally or manually. I definitely agreed with the feedback, however looking at the final outcome on its own, I really liked how the image almost looked like a collage. Yet, it would have been better if the models carried the arrow in the photo as it brings more of an ironic and humours way of communicating our cynical and political message. I imagine the final image outcome to be displayed as a public service announcement, or a billboard under the name of charities and organisations that work to solve gender issues. Overall, I evaluate that the success of the photograph came from the way my partner and I have strongly communicated the message and how we’ve turned an issue that is initially personal into a social message for the public to relate to and comprehend. Moreover, proving the outcomes success in its communication methods. Meanwhile, what could be improved is the visualisation of the message and how the ideas can come across better if executed with a better form of aesthetic and nature in terms of what the photo communicates physically without the contextual background.
23-09-2017: A Trip to V&A Museum
Today I decided to conduct a more first-hand research by visiting the Pink Floyd Exhibition at the V&A.
- Exhibit consisted of artefacts (guitars, records, shirts, memorabilia etc.) and projections of visuals and moving image paying homage to the Pink Floyd's history within the music industry.
- Exhibit connects to the fine art collection project in a sense that they're demonstrating longevity in the collection as the items that were exhibited marked prominent days and historic events where the band was involved.
- The projections complimented the artefacts as it was a great fusion of graphics and moving image.
22-09-2017: Fine Art - Crit session on my collection
For my collection, I created a photography series that was taken at a supermarket in Chinatown. However, I tried to maximise the use of unconventional arrangement methods by simply looking at the photographs as printed paper. Therefore in terms of the presentation of my collection, I had to look at the photographs on PAPER as a media. I had to explore working with paper (with the photos printed) as a physical medium as opposed to just a photograph and tinkering it digitally. I folded the photographs into paper planes and arranged the planes (on the spot) in a circular composition. However, throughout the circular shape I created I placed some of the planes out of the circular arrangement, as if some of the photo planes are breaking away from the connection that was building from the circular shape.
The materials I utilised were a camera, A4 paper, printing ink, masking tape and glue. Because the materials used were simple everyday tools, I felt that I was able to control the time I got to work on my collection effectively and sufficiently.
During the feedback session, here are the following comments and feedback that I’ve received regarding my collection piece:
“Collection comes together well”
“I like how the arrangement is concentrated towards the middle”
“Fusion of Asian culture”
“Turning something that is conventionally two-dimensional into three-dimensional piece”
“….like how it’s fragmented”
Given the time-constraints that we had to work with, there is apparent room for improvement in order for my collection to develop and expand more. The group and I discussed different ways of developing collections and we shared suggestions based on how we’d want our collections to look in a real exhibition. Most of the suggestions I received were focused around changing the scale of my collection, possibly making the collection bigger and possibly creating more sections with paper planes to really expand the collection into a large-scale piece within a wider exhibition space. An modification I would do to enhance the collection is to let the piece hang in the center of the space and place a backlight behind the piece to show the shadows and shapes the paper planes can make around the space. This will not only maximise the spatial quality of the collection but also create an experience for the viewers if they were to observe my collection in an official exhibition space. I did not name my collection however the group chose the title, “Chinatown” as a simplistic approach towards my collection. I decided to go with the title the group chose because it’s simple and concise. Through a metaphorical stance, I liked how the collection I created could represent a symbol of growth of Asian culture within Western areas like the UK.
The group found the methods I used effective in a way that it unifies the collection together but also classifies the photographs (as planes) individually as each photograph is a different image that is further communicated by the placement of the detached paper planes as an individual photograph. A student also said that my collection made them uncomfortable with the detached pieces while also feeling satisfied with the arrangement because it looks like a “pretty mess”. This is a very minor detail but what I liked about my collection personally is the white edges that the printer left when I printed the photographs. It indicates that even though my photographs are displayed and arranged three-dimensionally, it reminds the viewers that it is still in essence a photograph (initial outcome).
In conclusion, I really enjoyed working behind the scenes and learning the works of curating an exhibition. It really made me pay more attention to detail from the beginning of the art-making process, all the way down to displaying and arranging a piece of work in an exhibition. As a whole it’s fascinating to see how within fine arts, all details of a piece is very well thought out and carefully constructed to create expressive and creative artwork. It expanded my appreciation for exhibition curation in a way that artists are entitled to the freedom of arranging their own collection even though the exhibition spaces do not necessarily belong to them. Moreover, making the fine arts pathway worthwhile.
21-09-2017: Fine Art - Exhibition of Collections
From knick-knacks drowning in Jello, to a polaroid-covered map, the exhibition of collections held today within the D7/D8 group was definitely an interesting one. Overall, I enjoyed everyone’s work and because this was the first project the diagnostic students have created, not only did it reveal everyone’s capability but also their personalities through the respective styles that people have utilised as an approach to this collection project.
Personally, I found that everyone’s collection was enticing in a sense that each collection brought a whole different experience because everyone’s work were all so contrasting and distinct to one another. I’d only hope that my work stood out in its own way as a final collection to the viewers. The critique session were held in smaller group and personally, I find the system preferable as I find that I work better in smaller groups than big ones. The small groups allowed more direct feedback and opinions, giving more opportunity to have a conversation about my own work as a one-on-one engagement to the other students as viewers.
The collections that my group and I discussed were, a drawing series of people at underground trains, a food pyramid covered in food labels, a painting series of people’s profile pictures from social media, a map covered with polaroid photos and my collection: a photo series of the Chinatown supermarket folded into planes and arranged in a circular composition.
The question that kept popping up in my head throughout the critique session was whether a collection should be perceived as one piece or a series. This thought was what I heavily considered when looking at how different students arranged their collections. Some student’s collections looked very unified and connected to each other as opposed to a number of separate things arranged in a standardised manner. I felt that this exercise really challenged the definition of collection and how one may perceive a collection as a single body of work or as a number of items arranged together. In my personal opinion, my favourite piece was the food pyramid because the student really took in to details when arranging her food labels on the pyramid. Although she arranged the food labels based on nutritional value, the result visually is very pleasing. Her piece is also ironic in a sense that the pyramid looks like it’s been covered in a collage where the images are nice and condensed together, though she had the intention to categorise the labels, it gave a very nice aesthetic of a “pop-art” approach to her collection.
Overall I found the exhibition very exciting and nerve-wracking given that it was the first time that everyone showcased their work since the start of this course. Additionally, making this fine art project a good icebreaker. I would only hope that throughout the course, the projects I’ll get to do will be as enjoyable and will allow me the freedom to explore and learn what works and what does not within my art-making process.
*NOTE: Discussion and Evaluation of my own work will be further discussed in my next entry.
20-09-2017: Fine Art - Changing Ideas
Although the progress of my collection proved a good use of my class time, I was slightly concerned with the shadows photographs because they were taken at the park near Archway as an experiment, as I wasn’t sure what my collection should be made up of. Initially, the idea of photographing shadows came from the interest I had with the shapes and the pleasing motions it created when the reflected object moves. However, as I was developing my shadow collection after class, I felt that the content itself lacked depth in terms of what it communicates to me as a final piece (visually speaking). The lunch session at the park was a little too rushed and spontaneous that I wasn’t able to resonate with what I was potentially creating with collecting shadows through a personal perspective. Therefore through conceptual means, I felt that the shadow collection failed to communicate any meaningful message as a fine art piece, and thus I had to more than just refine and fine-tune, I had to collect more things.
For today’s self-study day, a friend and I went into Chinatown (near Covent Garden) for some groceries. As we arrived at the scene, I’ve never realised how the lights in Chinatown made the area feel alive, it was so refreshing to see and very inviting. Chinatown has such an interesting fusion of traditional and post-modern aesthetics, that it’s shaped into a character of its own. It’s as if it could its own county in London as opposed to a normal small area filled with Chinese and other Asian commodities. Although the area was a bit run-down and rustic, that aspect of it made it more interesting. It in essence reveals a background of Chinatown and the growth it has faced in the past years in London (symbolic perspective). The area reminded me of Indonesia, not necessarily based on the appearance, but due to the feeling I had when being in Chinatown, like I’m home, as Chinatown was filled with several wonders that I’ve left behind to pursue art in CSM. The growing connection I had with Chinatown made me realise that I’ve found my collection, London’s piece of Asia.
I still had to define what my collection was through a specific stance so I began photographing the different foods and aisles in the supermarket. I specifically wanted to showcase the different foods and its vibrance in colour, essentially showcasing its contrast to common goods that you’d easily find in a Tesco or Sainsbury. I had a blast photographing and documenting everything especially with the help of my friend, also an Indonesian native. The fact that she assisted me with my collection made it even more personal as the theme that was being portrayed in the collection is something that we both relate to easily- the idea of missing home. The tutors emphasised how the importance of the collection is not so much the work itself, but also the story behind its construction, methodology, and what the collection essentially reveals about the artist and thus discerns a meaning as an art series towards the viewers.
Therefore, the method of exploration was very important to me in this process as it allowed me to expand my awareness of the environment around me furthermore, leading to a bigger idea that I’m going to use for my collection. Additionally, not only did I obtain an idea, but I’ve also found London’s little piece of Asia, further revealing the growth of Asia worldwide. Even though the shadow collection did not prove successful, I decided to utilise the experimentation and composition arrangements that I used for the shadow collection for the new collection. This is because I wanted to see how similar methods can bring a totally different result and effect when the content of the work is changed and modified and foremost because the methods I’ve documented in my sketchbook with the use of the shadow photographs were successful. It was just a matter of changing my content to improve the depth and conceptual idea to the final collection.
Moreover, this fine art project allowed me to attain different and effective ways of finding ideas and developing them. Therefore allowing me to find my own enjoyment within the pathway area and additionally expand my appreciation for fine art.
19-09-2017: Fine Art - Constructing a collection
Today’s class was centred around exploring different collection methods and arrangements with the items that we’ve brought to construct our collections, therefore the class comprised of a lot of creating and experimenting. Earlier into the session, I was already facing the challenge of documenting my shadow collection in my sketchbook. I first began brainstorming two ways of constructing my collection other than standardisation - the most standard way of arranging a collection. I had a hard time finding ideas of how my collection can stand out in a way that it was inviting to viewers but also personal to me as the creator.
The tutors encouraged me find a more three-dimensional approach in presenting my collection. So instead of just sketching ideas in my sketchbook, I printed the shadow photographs to construct and experiment with ideas hands-on. I felt that the hands-on approach in physically constructing my shadow collection in different ways opened more ideas and possibilities. In essence, I wanted to ensure that my shadow collection would not look like a standardised photo series, as I thought that it would look a little too generic. I began folding my printed photographs into different shapes and forms of origami, additionally realising how the origami method brought an ambiguous nature to my shadow photographs that I was intrigued with, essentially shying away from kinaesthetic art as a theme that I initially conveyed with my shadow photographs on its own. Moreover, I didn’t want my experimentation to comprise solely on three-dimensional arrangements so I also took on a ‘graphic’ approach to my collection by overlaying the images (Overlay- type of presentation) on a digital software. The images I created in essence reminded me of Dan Mountford’s methodology of utilising double exposure in his photography work. This allowed me to view my collection through a ‘graphic designer’ lens. Therefore, I’ve employed the method of overlaying as a possible idea for my final collection.
Overall, I felt that I used the class time productively today. I found my progress today profoundly eye-opening by working hands-on with my experimentation. Not only did I attain more ideas, but I also discovered another effective method of research and creating. The hands-on approach I took with playing around with my shadow photographs being physically printed really expanded my way of thinking. Therefore I’ve come to the realisation that I should try physically creating models or making replicas as a way of experimenting as opposed to just sketching plans and ideas. Essentially, I’ve discovered that just drawing and sketching in my sketchbook will not necessarily combat the contstant feeling of being stuck and lost when trying to develop ideas, especially considering the time constraints I have to work with in this foundation course. Additionally, this fine art project allowed me to discover more effective ways of experimentation that I’ll likely use more often throughout the course and my educational years within the arts - I call it the “HANDS-ON” method.
18-09-2017: Fine Art - Collection
A collection are a group of items accumulated of a particular kind. From my past experiences, the type of collections I’ve always known are often musically-themed or comic-book-related. As the tutors explained further regarding the art of collections within fine art, it gave me a sense of awareness of how personal collections are for artists and curators whether it be the final piece as a collection, or a collection of artwork coherently displayed in an exhibition. Furthermore, revealing how artists have come to obtain the method of working in series.
An important aspect that I took from the class was the emphasis of methodology and presentation when constructing a collection. Therefore, assembling items and different pieces into a collection and arranging the collection within an exhibition space are two important factors that I had to consider for my project. In terms of inspiration, I was especially drawn to Jim Shaw’s “Thrift Store”, a collection comprised of paintings taken from thrift stores. A class discussion that was particularly interesting for me was the idea of whether objects that humans cannot physically touch can be collected as opposed to mundane objects in everyday life. This did not only redefine my outlook on collections, but also expanded my thinking of what collection I could create while also pushing the boundaries what constitutes as a collection in contrast to the conventional aspects of collecting things.
During my lunch break, I went to the park near the Archway campus to find inspiration of things that I could collect that would intrigue an exhibition audience in a hypothetical situation. I was very aware of my surroundings and due to my keen interest in photography, I paid attention to light and shadows within the scene and decided to take a series of pictures of shadows. The photographs I captured revealed how shadows can tell a narrative while being ambiguous at the same time because the distortion of shadows can reveal one thing, while the actual action that was happening from the shadow could be completely different story. The content I was capturing were shadows of different things as opposed to the actual action happening in person. A challenge that I faced was the source of media that I was going to utilise to execute my collection. Because shadows can communicate movement, I experimented with moving images as I recorded the shadows into videos and GIFs. However, if I compared the two different medium, I decided to work with still images by putting a shadow GIF and a photograph (both taken by me) side by side and wrote a list of ways that I could present the exhibition within its respective medium. The reason I decided to work with photographs was that I could tinker with a three-dimensional approach of presentation as I could either print the images or curate them digitally. Whereas moving image was more limited due to its requirement of digital display, therefore indicating more limitations as opposed to photographs that proved more possibilities within methodology and presentation.
Moreover, my main objective within this project was ensuring that my final piece will communicate a personal connection I as the artist has to the collection. Throughout the process of experimentation, I explored beyond photo composition and began looking at narratives and arrangements of how the shadow collection will be executed in an exhibition. Additionally, not only was the task quite challenging but also enjoyable as I was able to explore more of the London environment that I was very much new to.
14-09-2017: Idea Factory - Final Idea Proposal
Today, I developed my ideas more by sketching more objects of pieces of work that I could make incorporating animism, light and draw. Following the library research session, I began to have a better idea as to what I want out of this project and how I may communicate the themes and elements.
What you could have done in the drawing exercise
Problems you've encountered
Have you over come that problem?
Development of idea?
12-09-2017: Library Sessions
Ideas, ideas, ideas... hard to come up with when you're brain is blocked...
Inspiration was not hard to find in the library, and after a 4 month break, the session was very much needed to get my creativity flowing. Initially, I was overwhelmed with all the books that were accessible to us, the catalogs were endless, though I had to remain objective in defining animism, light and draw with relevant resources and books. Cultural themes is what I enjoy exploring the most, which was why I focused most on different totems cultivated through different cultures and religions. I found that looking into one culture is more efficient in developing a more specific concept for the task at hand. However, the inspiration and conceptual elements were very direct to what animism was within culture. For instance, the patterns and ethnic aesthetic of different tribes and cultures were an apparent aspect of inspiration for the idea factory. I wished I would have looked into more in-depth ideas of animism other than culture and religion.
Although my group was assigned 'light' as a material, I especially found the book Drawing the Sun by Bruno Munari intriguing because it challenged the idea of light as a media and its use in symbolism. Instead of light as media itself, we explored other methods of how light can create art with the use of different types of medium such as glass, pencil, plastic, etc. Additionally, the materials section was a collection that allowed me to experience a more hands-on approach to the task therefore enhancing the way I thought of my ideas.
Overall, I enjoyed the collaborative activity of the library session and I felt that the group and I developed a better understanding of how we were going to shape our ideas and execute them through sketch.
11-09-2017: First class at Archway
Yesterday was my first class in the foundation diploma at Archway. I was quite intimidated by everyone around me and even more overwhelmed by volume of information that we'd been given regarding the methods used over the course of this school year. By the way in which the lecturers have guided our research and reflection, it's clear that the methods used will allow me to execute and develop ideas creatively and freely through different perceptions. The most important aspect that I took from the class was how the tasks assigned will help me learn how to adapt multi-dimensional lenses as a way to perceive artwork through different viewpoints and perspectives, moreover allowing me to THINK OUTSIDE THE BOX.
I was given my first task that are done in groups which I took as an opportunity to interact more with the other students in my diagnostics class. We were told to make a idea design proposal with the use of a theme, material and process that were allocated to our group. We were allocated the words animism, light and draw which were words that from my first impression sound interesting and even more intriguing to define and interpret in relation to our task.