Tuesday, 18 March 2014

Assignment 2 :Reflection

I took a long time over this assignment because of work pressures (which are due to finally recede at the end of April). The result was that the intensity of my engagement with the process was less than for previous assignments, and I have been very much aware that this has reduced the richness and resonance of what I have learned from it. I am sad to be moving on now, as I feel I have probably missed out, especially on finding out about contemporary artists and how they have responded to the 'man made' theme, but realise that I must move on at some point, or never finish.

Despite this relative lack of intensity, during this module I have moved from complete ignorance about screen printing to at least an understanding of what I don't know! I have much more appreciation of the beauty of some man-made things than I did, and a collection of sketchbook starting points for further exploring. I have found myself more self-directed in my explorations than I have previously been, and more able to recognise the fork in the road that I want to follow- either for aesthetic reasons or to learn new ways of doing things. And found myself valuing many of the processes I learned in the previous level 1 course- enough to want to follow them spontaneously (especially the shape/ texture/ colour exercises to finalise a piece).  I guess that's what is meant by developing your own creative process.

Looking back, what still needs attention is the way I do my exploring - I've really missed the feel of the materials in my hands during the last few months. It's been a big departure for me to beaking something so two dimensional and textureless. My style is usually much more material driven - Thomas Heatherwick my hero. This can't be right!  I'm looking forward to the next part of the course as it promises much more of that.

Notes on my design decisions for assignment 2:
I think that the decision to go with the scaffolding design was a good one, as it benefited from my having explored it more than the others in the rest of the section. I am generally pleased with how it turned out.

The size of the pattern is a little large, and could be slightly smaller. The decision to make the A3 size only a corner of a much larger piece turned out well, even though the decision was made after the rectangles exercise as opposed to being as part of it. I think making the border small enough go all the way round the A3 would have made it technically difficult for me to get the detail, and would have lost some of the visual impact it has.

I could have chosen to make a single larger image, as seen in some of the examples of constructivist art I found, but in some ways I like the way this image leads you to think about the larger piece of cloth it comes from, and the use it could be put to, and that this is more relevant to the ethos of constructivism.

The background texture does not show very well, despite being the most effective printing. This is disappointing. I had expected that it would give another layer of geometric pattern on a smaller scale, adding to the depth of the image. However, this has not happened, perhaps mostly because of the relative lack of contrast between the pink and the white background.

I am glad that I chose to pursue the red colour scheme rather than the cooler blue one once it became obvious I couldn't continue with the screen printing. I was pleased that I was able to get the colours relatively accurately.

Finally, looking back, I think the samplers with machine stitching for the straight lines over printed shapes worked nicely and have more intrinsic interest to them than plain printing. I will certainly be exploring more of this in future.

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