Thursday, December 9, 2010

Week 14 Reflection

Painting: 7 hours
Drawing: 2 hours
Working on presentation: 9 hours
Writing abstract: 3 hours
Writing: 1 hour
Collaging: 4 hours

I didn't end up printing last weekend. Instead I painted. I like where it's going, but it still needs work. I also did another pastel drawing.

I also wrote a letter to my house:

Dear House,

We've spent so many wonderful years together, and you've watched me grow inside your walls. So many times I've lifted my feet to climb your yielding wooden steps. I've slid my hands along your glossy railing, ascending and descending. I've lain across your creaking golden floorboards, and you held me there: sturdy. When I was with you, it was okay to just be silent, to sit inside you and breath. And I knew that you didn't expect anything from me. You never asked me to explain myself or to listen to your aches. And at night, I slept well, knowing your sloped ceiling would rest above me, sheltering. Perhaps I shouldn't have slammed your doors so many times or stomped my feet against your floor. I never meant to hurt you; you were always so giving. Together we were complete. And it's hard to say exactly when we grew apart. But still, I think about you. I have your angles memorized, where your walls meet your ceilings and your corners form. And your sounds are embedded deep - the back door's thump, the heater's purr, the window's whine, and your soft whisper that echoes through the vents. I still love your smell of heat, upstairs, on summer afternoons, and the feel of your seeping chill, on winter evenings. I still walk through your narrow path in my dreams and feel you in the dark. And we still recognize each other when I visit, that faint familiarity. But it's distanced now, as it should be, because you are not my home. You may not understand. You may resent our separation, but I think, in time, you will no longer miss me. We will become old acquaintances, who sometimes stop to say hello. And I look forward to that day, when we can greet each other with cheer.

Love always,

Your third daughter

I started doing some collaging with photographs of my house. For the first one I drew on top of it with oil pastels, and for the second one I drew on top of it with pastels (I forgot to take a picture of the second one before I drew on it). I'm not sure how much these contribute to my work, but I had fun working on them.

I also have a plan for this weekend that I'm really excited about. I'm going to divide an image into 6 parts, then make a monotype of each part. Then I'm going to attach the prints together with linen tape, like the sketch below. Once it's all attached I'm going to draw on top of it with oil pastel. So the image will end up being 3'x6', and I can't wait to see how it will turn out.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Week 13 Reflection

Drawing: 9 hours

This was a drawing I started, but stopped working on because I didn't really like where it was going. So I went back to doing some pastel drawings because I really enjoy them. I think they're good studies for making prints and paintings.

I also played around with the idea of a figure in some of my images, but I'm not sure yet. It's something to think about. I feel like I've really been dragging my feet this week, and I need to get moving. But, I'm only taking IP and Penny Stamps next semester, so I'm really excited about all the time I'm going to have to work on my project. I'm planning to spend a day in the print studio this weekend so I can make some more monotypes to draw on. So, I'll see where things go.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Week 12 Reflection

Painting: 6 hours
Drawing: 5 hours

At the beginning of the week, I started two oil paintings. I still need to work on them, but I'm so excited to be painting again. I also took Amanda's suggestion to draw onto my prints, and I really enjoyed it. I used oil pastel, and I'm actually much happier with some of them now. I feel like it brings them to life, and I want to keep experimenting with this. Obviously, working with color affects the feeling of the images, and I'm curious to know how they are perceived now. I'm looking forward to getting back to my studio to continue painting, printing, and drawing.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Week 11 Reflection

Drawing: 16 hours
Printing: 3 hours

I did this 6'x3' drawing for the all student show with oil pastels. I've been feeling restless lately, and I wanted to do something different. I had so much fun working large and playing with color. I continued with the grayscale pastel drawings, and ever since I started working on them last week, I've been feeling like I want to paint, and I can't get it out of my head. Yesterday, Larry Cressman mentioned that I could collage these drawings to get some interesting compositions, and I thought that would be a great possibility to explore.

I also did a couple of monotypes this week based on the pastel drawings. I tried using different values to divide the space. I had a lot of fun working on this plate, but I don't really care for the print that much. I just wasn't satisfied because it was an attempt to paint without actually painting. So I figure I might as well start painting and see what comes from it. I don't know how painting will tie in with the writing and printing, or if it even will, but I'm more concerned with doing what my gut tells me.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Week 10 Reflection

Drawing: 6 hours
Writing: 1 hour

I went home for a day last weekend, and it was interesting to look at my house now that I've spent so much time on this project. It was a short trip, but I did take some photographs while I was there. I was kind of wary about drawing from photographs, but I really enjoyed drawing all the shadows. When I was taking the photographs, I realized that certain areas of the house felt more important to me. I really loved photographing different angles of the stairs and of my bedroom upstairs. I was also drawn to the back entrance of my house. I think those areas hold more of my everyday memories than the rest of the house.

I also played around with another possibility for text. I used a set of rubber stamps to print this short letter. I'm not sure how I feel about this, but it is nice to see some text that is actually legible.

I really enjoyed the trip the museum, particularly the Whistler exhibit. His etchings and drypoints were beautiful, and I really loved the contrast he achieved through line.

Unfortunately, I didn't get as much work done this week as I wanted because I got sick, but I'm feeling better, and I'm excited to do more drawings. I also want to print some monotypes, and then start a large etching.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Week 9 Reflection

Working on plates: 4.5 hours
Printing plates: 2.5 hours
Drawing: 4 hours
Writing: 1 hour
Reading: 4.5 hours

I continued drawing this week, but started working at a larger scale. I read a perspective book to try and understand the basics of how to construct a space. It helped me think more critically about where I want the point of view to be before I start drawing. But it's still something I need to work on. The last image in this set is oil pastel instead of charcoal, and I really enjoyed the change.

Dear Cassie,

Remember those nights
lying parallel to each other
beneath the window?
I would burst into laughter,
no reason
except that silence seemed funny
with eyes open in the dark,
And you couldn't help it,
you had to laugh, too.

But not always.
Your eyes were murder
when I followed you around,
spying on you and your friends
until Maureen threw a shoe
at my head.
And still,
I did not relent,
always wanting so badly
to be you.

And at some point,
I think you started to like
sharing a room
with me.
We had so many fun days
rearranging our beds,
and singing Britney Spears,
even after
she had stopped being popular.

And you'd jump on my bed
to wake me up
on weekends, and I'm still
not a morning person.
But then you left, and I slept
for four years,
with the upstairs
to myself.

And I missed your laughter,
those summer nights,
long ago, sleeping
in our underwear
with just a sheet, listening
to the fan click.
I still remember the soft,
morning light, dancing
across the slanted ceiling
when days were filled with nothing but

I also continued to work on my aluminum plate, and I made another plate with the epistle poem above on it. It didn't work out, which I kind of expected, because dry-point is too fuzzy for text to be legible. If I want to print text on a plate, it will have to be etched, but I'm not sure if that is the solution, either.

After talking to Seth and Amanda on Tuesday, I've been thinking a lot about whether or not I want to make a book. Seth pointed out that books usually tell a sequential story, but there really isn't any specific order in my images. I feel like I've never been 100% into the idea of making a book, and I've finally admitted to myself that I don't really want to do it. I'm having so much fun making images and writing, and I don't want to force something that I'm not committed to. So I'm going to keep writing, drawing, and printing and see where things go.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

I have curtains!

I printed curtains for my fibers project, and I'm really happy to have them up in my studio now.

Week 8 Reflection

Working on plates: 5.5 hours
Printing: 2 hours
Drawing: 4 hours
Writing: 3 hours

I just saw Bob Dylan at the Hill Auditorium, and he was amazing! Aside from that, I did some more drawings this week. I'm trying to work on different perspectives: lower and closer up, but I'm having a hard time achieving what I see in my head. I think I'm having such a hard time because I have a limited understanding of perspective drawing, so it is challenging to create the images I'm looking for. I picked up a book on perspective, and I'm planning to work through it in order to improve my skills. I don't want my drawings to be purely focused on perspective, but I think working on the basics will really help push the quality of my images.

I also worked more on my basement door collagraph from earlier. I cut down the plate and eliminated the text to get the darkness that I intended in the original drawing. I'm kind of tired of this image now, but I like it much more after the changes.

I also continued working on the bedroom drypoint, creating more gradation within the image. I'm much happier with how it looks, but I'm still working into a little more. I've also decided I like this image much better on white paper than gray. The white pops more, and it really shows off the contrast between light and dark. I've also been trying to think about how to include text with this image, possibly below it on the same sheet of paper, or on a separate sheet. I'm also wondering if the text should be printed, handwritten, or digital. I think it would be best printed, but I'll have to experiment with it. So, I'm planning to continue drawing, printing, and writing next week.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Week 7 Reflection

Printing: 4.5 hours
Drawing: 2 hours

This past week I continued drawing, and I made a few monotypes from a copper plate. I really enjoyed working this way, being able to quickly make an image and get the kind of lights and darks I want. I'd like to continue making monotypes, but I don't plan to work solely this way. I'm still really drawn to drypoint, and I will probably work with etching and aquatint eventually.

The small critique yesterday was very helpful because I didn't have much feedback from my peers prior to that point. It was good to see how other people read the images, which some people found creepy, while others got a sense of memory. It also really helped me think about perspective. I've been questioning whether I should try to get accurate perspective or play around with distortions in my images, and I think I need to keep exploring this to find the answer. I've also been less focused on writing lately, but I felt reassured yesterday that I should continue working on it because it adds more depth to the images. I don't want to include the writing in the image, but I am still considering how it could work in a book format. So I plan to continue drawing, printing, and writing to keep working through my ideas.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Week 6 Reflection

Continued working on aluminum plate: 4 hours
Printed plate: 1.5 hours
Reading: 9.5 hours
Looked at artists' books: 1.5 hours
Worked on project proposal: 5 hours
Drawing: 2 hours
Beveled edges of copper plate: 1.5 hours

This past week I continued working on the aluminum plate to get more darks. While it is darker, I think it could still use a little more refinement before I am ready to call it finished. I also beveled the edges of a copper plate so that I can make some monoprints next week, which I am really excited to do. I continued drawing spaces that I recalled from my childhood and plan to keep drawing so that I have plenty of sources to work from when I start monoprinting.

Most of my time this week was spent reading Psychology of the House by Olivier Marc and House as a Mirror of Self by Clare Cooper Marcus, which were both very helpful in thinking about my project proposal. I still found it difficult to articulate exactly what it is I am trying to do through my project, but I think my idea is becoming clearer both to myself, and hopefully to others, as well.

I also met with Annette Haines to look at some artists' books, and it was really enjoyable to see the various ways artists have put together books. So I am still playing around with the idea of making my own artist book.