Assignment #8

Finally a chance at the computer! With children out of school, I’m afraid my chances of working on the computer have decreased dramatically. But it’s still Tuesday, so here is the next assignment:
Collect found objects on a theme of your choosing. Use the objects in some work, in whichever manner you would like. (Incorporate them into a mixed media piece, film them, photograph them, draw them… you decide.) And, as always, have fun with it!

completed assnmnt #7

I have had the weekend free of the usual distractions and so have been working on a few of these “primitivist” pieces, which is funny for me because I realized that a lot of my work is already quite primitive! The big challenge for me is to let go of details. It seems I just can’t simplify it in the way that I imagine it in my mind. I’ll keep working on it, though. My guess is that I should copy (exactly) a whole lot of art in the style I’m interested in before I can do it well myself. Not sure if it’s good or bad, but it’s hard not to do things in my usual style.
Here’s what I’ve got:
First a sketch with several ideas incorporated. This is my most symbolic self-portrait.

And from that sketch came this:

My second self-portrait was from an idea I had in my mind: based on an African sculpture in wood. However, this piece looks nothing like what I saw in my mind’s eye.

After my disappointment in the other two pieces, I thought I might open the “Primitivism” book at random and try copying whatever I found there, but as a self-portrait. Again, I kept wanting to make it too detailed. I went back and tried wiping out some of the details and going more for shapes. Was only moderately successful. Oh, and it really doesn’t look anything like me, but that’s okay.
Here’s the page from the book along with my work next to it:

Here’s my piece alone:

I think I should have worked that last one in stone, or at least in clay! (Not my usual medium, but hey, why not?)

Next project?

While I have a full evening at home alone and no movie to watch, I find myself surfing the web for cool art blogs. Came across a nice one called Art Biz Blog and checked out some of the blogs of artists that went through a “Blog Triage Class.” Sigh. There are some really nice ones out there!
Okay, it’s not news to me that my blog is rather plain and uninspiring to look at. The main thing for me was just to get something going. Now it looks like I’ll be researching and hopefully implementing a redesign. A good summer project, right?
In the meantime, thanks for sticking with me.

Assignment #7

I was browsing in the public library today briefly — only three big books-worth of browsing — and would like to do something related to one of them. I got Expressionism by Dietmar Elger, “Primitivism” in 20th Century Art published by the Museum of Modern Art, and A Century of Artists Books by Riva Castleman. Hard to decide what to focus on! But focus is exactly the point of these assignments. SO…
How about this: Make a self-portrait in a “primitive” style.
(I’ve seen lots of self-portraits in the Expressionism book and plenty of masks as I flip through the book on Primitivism, so this is sort of a combination. We’ll revisit the artist book in a future assignment!)

Project nearly complete for assnmt #6

Right after posting the last assignment, I heard Nina Hagen’s “New York New York.” I had visions in my head of an awesome graphic poster for it. I’ve never been terribly successful at rendering what I envisioned, though. I decided to make a few graphic elements that were part of the poster and put it into a simple animation using After Effects. Here’s my 7-second video. I plan to add audio. Had some software issues that kept it from happening.

Assignment #6

Usually I post the new assignment on Tuesdays. I won’t have a chance tomorrow, so here it is early.
Instead of working from something visual, choose something auditory to work from. Find a piece of music or a soundscape and make one or two pieces from it. This one’s really open to interpretation! Have fun!

Completed Assnmt #5

I had one more in mind to do after these, but alas, time slipped away from me. Maybe later. Here are the three: The first is done in pen (first in pencil).

The second is charcoal.

And the third is pastel on black.

Ideally, I’d have used live models, but time was a’tickin’ and I used a magazine ad instead. There I go working from pictures again. The fine arts profs would rap me on the knuckles for that. Oh well. I’d love to know how many artists do work from photographs. There must be many many.
My favorite of these is the pastel. Can’t beat those bright colors on black! Black paper is quickly becoming my new fave!

Assignment #5

I still want to work on going more and more abstract. So here’s this week’s assignment:
Make a series of 3-5 (or more?) drawings (paintings, sculptures, etc) in which you go from very realistic to more and more abstract. Picasso did this and so did Henry Moore. Probably plenty of other artists have, too. Let’s see what we can come up with!

Completed Assnmt #4

Despite having a week and a half on this, I still felt rushed, but I did it. First, I found this Still Life by Willem Kalf in my Art Through The Ages book.

I was going to set something up to sort of reproduce it, but then it looked so much like a queen on the right, that I decided to just draw my interpretation of the piece.

Still wanting to set up a still life of my own, I decided to use this piece by Herculaneum (also in my Art Through The Ages book):

This is what I set up:

And here is what I drew, first on white (with pen) and second on black (with a white China marker and then a white gel pen on top of that).


Working on black was a nice way to shake things up. I have some previous pieces (from years back) that I worked on black paper and I thought I’d try it again. Went out and found a lovely pad of black paper at the art store. I’m looking forward to experimenting more with it.
By the way, you can click on the image and then click on it again from there to see it bigger. It’s hard to see well at this size.