To start our ‘Street Car’ project we chose inanimate objects that we felt reflected the characters of the play. I chose to represent Blanche as a whisk and a paper lantern, representative of her delicate emotional state and connection to the light and dark setting. Stella, I decided, was most like a wine bottle opener, due to her strength and resourcefulness, as well as the presents of her wealthy back ground. Mitch is represented as a tin opener, because of his useful and bland character; Mitch is both practical and proper, but also quite a bland character. Stanley, is represented by a potato masher, as he is a blunt instrument that uses force and stubbornness in order to achieve if goal; he is also strong and solid, unlike Blanche’s whisk.
I used these shapes and objects to explore the relationships between the characters, and looked at the use of text and colour to further change the perceived relationship.
As part of our Colour pallet project we looked at artists books that had interesting colour pallets; featuring naturalist, expressive, limited, unlimited, no use of black, flat colour and textured colour pallets. We spent a great deal of time looking through the library in order to find artists that use these colour pallets.
Looking at all the different uses of colour and pallet, it became clear that it was surprisingly hard to categorise the pallets into the classifications that we were given; many of the pallets that I looked at could of been placed in two or more of the other categories. This mean that I had to look very hard at each pallet and decide which category that I felt they best emulated.
Flat use of colour: Andy Warhol, Do It Yourself
Limited use of colour: Raya Mollar
Limited use of colour: Raya Mollar
Limited Use of Colour: Jenny Badger Sulton, Grain Dreaming
Naturalist Colour Pallet
Unlimited Colour Pallet: Helenn Rumple, Spanish Fantasin
Naturalist Colour Pallet: Ruth Terril, Presents of Absence
Use of Texture Colour: Probir Gusta, The Bene Isral Family
Limited Use of Colour; Andy Warhol, Gangster Funeral
Unlimited Colour Pallet: Hundertwann
Naturalist Colour Pallet: Masur, Squirrel in a Cherry Tree
Unlimited Colour Pallet: Hundertwann
Naturalist Colour Pallet: Mary Carol Nelson, Through the Woods
Limited Use of Colour
Can we really say that what we do always come fully formed prior to the activity of doing it? Or do we have to recognize the entire history of our activity with materials in order to understand them?
The simple answer, to the first part of, this question would be no; when we first start out making something or creating a piece of art, we cannot know the obstacles and challenges that will affect how our work eventually comes out, as well as how environmental factors may change our preconceived ideas.
It’s often found that you will never truly know how to do something until you actually try to do it. Much was the case of Ingold and the basket weaving; both he and his students did not anticipate the environmental factors that lead to the change in shape and structure of their baskets. The insight that this then gave them, was what ultimately lead to the realisation that their baskets proved as a physical representation of why the historical baskets of the same sort where indeed shaped in the same way, debunking the common misconception that this was done for sme practical application.
This shows how important the consideration of both material and environment is within the context of historical knowledge. How different materials, and the environments they are used in, react can ultimately affect what they make and how the artist or creator has to work with them. We often focus on the written and recorded information, filling the gaps without considering the application of material context. Ingold’s ‘Dance of Agency’ explains the connections and consequences of our materials and environmental context, how this ects the way in which we work and how it should not be ignored in a historical context.
This brief asked that we create 30 colour pallets, both so that we might be able to refer to them in future and to also explore the relationships between colours. We were not allowed to use black and all of our pallets had to be done in an abstract manner. Due to the fact that I do not usually work with a great deal of colour, it was a challenge to come up with so many colour combinations.I started by looking at colours in a natural environment and then moved on to look at the colour in emotion and memory; both in respect to people and places.
This mark making brief was all about exploring different ways of working and using different materials; as well as diffrent way in which to record using the medium of illustration.
We worked with natural materials, focusing on the visual feel the subject, rather than the actually look of it. part of the challenge of the natural forms that we drew, was to make it look more textural, rather than necessarily focusing on the actually literal appearance of the subject.
Another task with in this was to illustrate a conversation between fellow students; while we where given specific brief related subjects to discuss during this time, our conversation took a *more natural turn and so became a more genuine representation of our real life convocations, rather than the set formulae that we where instructed to follow.
(*Of course, this did result in a rather less pc conversation and subsequent recording.)
Our first long running brief instructed us to record 50 artefacts, and to look at the relationships between them, in an illustrative manner. We first started the project at the National Museum in Cardiff, where we spent the day looking around the museum and drawing the artefacts in the exhibits. We also took a trip to St Fagins, were we drew the historical buildings, and took inspiration from the walk to and from the site.
To make up the rest of the 50, I took inspiration from my day to day life, looking at the shape and form of many of my day to day surrounds and how they might be explored.
Looking at how materials, tool and environment effect art and the creative process, Bateson suggests that we think through our tool: the ‘ecology of the mind’. Presenting both tools and body acting as a sort of feed back loop; using the lumberjack and his axe as an example. the lumberjack knows when to stop hacking at the tree because the sensation through the axe tells him so.
Similarly, if you were to run a pencil over a rough surface, you would not only feel the pencil in your hand, but also feel the surface through the pencil; this forming a basic feed back loop between your hand and the pencil.
There are, of course, other forces at work in this equation, such as the environmental surface that allows you to draw; as well as the effect of the connection between body and tool, there is a conditional connection between tool and the environmental factors. for example; when we drew on the loosely held paper with both the pen and crayon, they produced two very different images. The pen, despite the lack of tension in the surface, and additional lack of tension, created a ruff and uneven shaped circle. in contrast, without the tension and force behind the paper, the crayon made little to no impression on the page. this was due to it’s far harder quality; meaning that in order to create a more distinctive mark, the crayon, needs much more friction.