Red runs throughout this row because it is a prefix for Little Red Riding Hood, hence limiting the colour scheme that I can work with. From left to right, the contrast of shade is steep because of the drastic change in personality (friendly vs ferocious). I also like how red can be joyful and dangerous at the same time depending on the context and shades used.
Colour scheme: Split complementary
Properties: visual interest, contrasting, variety, modern
Primary colour scheme in this row would be complementary colours of blue and orange. I use complementary to show the distinct difference between the environment (science vs art school). Also to make objects stand out against the background evidently shown in all 3 compositions. Perhaps also the disturbance when I “catch no balls” in class.
Properties: visual interest, contrasting, variety, modern
Probably the row with most number of colour schemes adopted. 1st and 3rd composition is vibrant and contrasting, while 2nd world is really light in shades to portray a idealised, perfect “other people”.
Colour scheme: monochromatic blue
Properties: cohesive, attracts attention, boring, emotional, representational, lack focal point
My favourite row because working with monochromatic colour is always a bold try. I like how blue is both the main colour depicting ocean and depression, relating the composition back to the idea of being “homesick.” It is a negative emotion hence I feel blue is a feasible.
The artist that has inspired my style in this project is Vincent Van Gogh. Impasto technique is widely adopted in his paintings, for example The Starry Night and most of his self portraits.
Impasto is a technique where paint is laid on an area of the surface in very thick layers, usually thick enough that the brush or painting-knife strokes are visible. Paint can also be mixed right on the canvas. When dry, impasto provides texture; the paint appears to be coming out of the canvas.
I really like this technique because the direction and the layer of brushwork is made distinct, as well as the colour. The fact that this type of style can be both detailed and bold when finished is truly amazing.
“CHALLENGES AND DIFFICULTIES”
Because I’ve decided to do digital painting in traditional brushwork; impasto, means I have to complete the image bit by bit instead of section by section like other contemporary digital art forms. Hence when I need to adjust or alter the colour completely, I can only paint over the older layer because “undo” function is no longer pragmatic.
I also have to decide on the colour scheme carefully because certain colours were already fixed due to recognisable characters.
Brain can show signs of decay to further emphasize the negative health effects
Lip is an under representation of lust
Incorporated gestalt and many design principles into the composition
Black and white graphics make the subject more pronounced
2 compositions for each quote.
Silk screen & 1st composition:
“What’s in the Fucking box?”
It is an open-ended question quote. The word “fucking” conveyed negative connotation, hence my image can depict something unpleasant. Fridge was the first thing that came across my mind when I saw “box”, and if anything unpleasant, it must be the mold. I was inspired by Susuwatari from Spirited Away and Totoro.
I did Silkscreening and realized the image is quite messy, populated with overwhelming amount of Susuwatari. Details on the food items wasn’t clear. Image lacks focal point, and the background frame on grey scale didn’t turn out too well.
I decrease the number of food items and Susuwatari in Composition V1.1 to tidy up. I added in more “species” that also varied in size to give a focal point and make the image more interactive. Susuwatari is arranged in golden ratio spiral, further emphasizing the focal point and provide a directional guide to the eyes.
First try was too dark. For the second try I decreased my strength, but it turn out too light… T^T I wasted 2 sides but by third time I was better at controlling my strength. I was satisfied because the image got translated onto the tote bag quite well. The details were clear and the amount of ink applied was adequate as well.
“What’s in the Fucking box?”
I kept thinking about a head in the box but Miss Ho said we shouldn’t be too literate because the image need to depict our own interpretation, and that “box” can be anything. I drew inspiration from her words and wanted my image to depict freedom of thoughts. I adopted a cosmic theme, the universe is infinite, just like our thoughts.
I added key hole to symbolize “open-mindedness” and to be the focal point. Wings from her eyes illustrates the idea that we should move away from what we see, which is the movie, hence less literate. It’s in contrasting colors to direct attention to the key hole, and more appealing to look at. Cosmic theme was maintained throughout, but instead of a 3×3 arrangement, I place them in golden ratio spiral to create a sense of direction. One of the planets is at the foreground to create depth, because it seems like the planets are not just moving in X,Y axis, but also along the Z axis. I removed the hand and the halo because they caused a sense of unbalance, and by elimination, the cosmic theme became clearer.
“WHy is the rum gone?”
It’s yet another open-ended question quote. “Gone” means rum is consumed. Hence my ideology is based on alcohol over-consumption. For this composition, I want to depict that over-consumption will cause one to spill words out of the mouth from their heart, without filtering them. It’s illustrated by the gramophone on the heart. Tentacles symbolized alcohol because it’s the brand image for a famous rum brand, Kraken. The intense coiling creates a sense of discomfort and suggest that alcohol is difficult to get rid of, in other words, addictive.
I shifted the gramophone to the right because there is more space. I needed something at the bottom right to balance the image so I added some tentacles, and another layer below the heart to emphasize on coiling. I incorporated more interactions between the heart and the tentacles so they look integrated and drew more veins on the heart to make details clearer after threshold.
“WHy is the rum gone?”
Alcohol over-consumption imposes negative impacts on heath, especially on the brain which in turn also affects our mental health because it arouses lust. I was inspired by my classmate’s presentation on Gestalt and decided to incorporate it into my composition.
Variation in thickness of the lines, together with negative spaces, creates a illusion of skulls. I duplicated the skull on both sides to balance the image so it does not look heavy on the right side. Brains on the left breaks the symmetry and enhances visual interest. The focal point would be on the lips which symbolize women. With both skulls staring down at it, the image further emphasize on lust. The repetition of wine glasses signify over consumption, and brings depth to the image because now there are lines that run across and towards. The wine glass is also a play on gestalt because it’s just curved lines assemble to form a recognizable object.
Translating image onto silkscreen require precision and careful manipulation
Moving away from literal interpretation of quotes proved to be a common challenge because the scenes in the movie is ingrained in us
Balancing details and clarity at the same time requires delicate planning
Value feedback and embrace differing opinions
Banksy is an anonymous England-based graffiti artist, political activist and film director of unverified identity. Their satirical street art and subversive epigrams combine dark humor with graffiti executed in a distinctive stenciling technique. Banksy’s works of political and social commentary have been featured on streets, walls, and bridges of cities throughout the world. Banksy’s work grew out of the Bristol underground scene, which involved collaborations between artists and musicians. Banksy says that they were inspired by 3D, a graffiti artist who later became a founding member of the English musical group Massive Attack.
I admire Banksy’s work because they condense societal/ political issues into simple visual representations, yet able to effectively convey his concern to the mass. The fact that he remain anonymous and unidentified, show his disdain towards fame and commercializing art.
experiment with different tools/ techniques for making prints
how to mono-print properly and not get hurt by letterpress machine
create various patterns to compare texture/ density/ thickness/ contrast etc with regards to various emotions
develop a sense of direction for project 1
have fun! 😉
Part 2: RESEARCH AND PROCESS
I set a theme for project 1; flowers, because each of them carries a unique meaning and I believe flowers makes amazing tools for mark making. After my research on flowers and its meaning, I match expressive, accessible and suitable candidate to a emotion. I went on to experiment with more ways of creating marks and study how each characteristic of a line would make a difference to my final product, affecting how my audience feel about them. I group my findings as of those listed under “things I learnt”.
Before I start constructing the actual product, I planned, noted down the distinct characteristic of each emotions and how the study of lines can help me with conveying that particular emotion, with considerations for the type of flowers at the back of my head. I put some thoughts into textures as well because variation in textures would be less boring and it will enhance the aesthetic appeal of my final product.
Things I learnt:
various textures can affect the final product
gradients that exist within black and white plays an important role
denser prints = emotions that are more intense/ disturbing/ strong
less dense prints = emotions that are more light-hearted/ bright
sharp lines/ edges = emotions that span across a short time period/ sudden/ spontaneous
curvy lines/ edges = emotions that became gradual/ non-spontaneous
thin lines = carries motion and rhythm/ touch on emotions lightly
thick lines = draw in attention/ place emphasis on certain parts
Challenges I face:
converting 3D objects to 2D prints
link flower meaning/ pattern/ structure to corresponding emotions
handling of flowers e.g. maintain freshness / travel with minimal destruction done / when to get my flowers and start making prints
NO COLOURS, ONLY BLACK AND WHITE
handling the difference between expectation and reality… :’)
Flower: Tansy leaf
Background information and ideas: Tansy flower represent hostility. I chose solid, dense blocks of black and white as background because they are opposing colours, just like how hostility is caused by conflict. Background is tightly fabricated to show tension, sparkles to depict fiction. Feels rough and coarse. Line right in the middle to show two distinct parties. Sharp, pointy leaves against each other to show opposition, they look like swords that intend to hurt. Outline of the leaves are straight and narrow because hostility is always directed to a party.
Method: weave black and white sparkle tape in apple-pie style. Contrasting paint print of Tansy leaves in acrylic paint.
Flower: blue hyacinth
Background information and ideas: blue hyacinth represent remorse, regret for wrong-doings. Cigarettes are often associated with negative emotions and remorse can be one of them. The dense and dark stains of blue hyacinth signify a flawed past that cannot be forgotten. Crosses symbolise wrong-doings. Crumpled paper depict that past time was not all smooth sailing. One regrets, and thus hope for a new page because when people want to start afresh, they tear off a page and start on a new sheet, this action inspire my work.
Method: Smoked and smeared tracing paper with cigarette ashes. Sandwich inked flower in between pages and crumpled to leave stains on the paper. Make cross markings with brush pen.
Flower: snakesfoot – replaced by burnt ixora
Background information and ideas: background is completely dark to depict fear, and being horrified is an intense emotion. Snakesfoot representing horror is poisonous so it’s not available in Singapore. Lucky me, the ixora, commonly found in roadside plantations, has very similar appearance and size. I burnt it because burning of flowers is often associated with witchcraft and black magic. Subject is been engulfed by darkness, with burnt Ixora denser towards the right side. It is placed in an dense, circular motion to create depth and uneasy sensation. White prints are marks of my hands, trying to strangle and kill the subject, almost touching it to convey suspense and the peak the horror as an emotion.
Representation of flower: negative painting of small white spaces at the right side created by flower, engulfed by pasted burnt ixora. Hand prints using white acrylic paint.
Background information and idea: love would be represented by rose. For background I chose woven cloth with wine stains; weaving is associated with the act of affection and nurturing nature while red wine is associated with romance. Slight maroon tint and aroma of wine helps to convey “love”. Also, the texture omits coziness. Rose dipped in black and white paint to create a marble effect because, “sometimes it lasts and sometimes it hurts instead”, love is a mixture of happiness and sorrow. Flowers are arranged in a bouquet but facing different directions to signify different stages of love, lower towards left side because time might erode the level of affection. Inspired by Cai Guo Qiang’s “Chaos in Nature” painting that resembled the marking a rose would make. The flower prints are generally round in shape, light in colour with little contrast, representing a positive emotion.
Method: paint cloth to cover up the natural brown tint, spray red wine onto cloth, then paint marble gradient with rose.
Background information and idea: sketch book paper as background because its white and smooth, best represents my thought that; happiness is the purest state of bliss. Happiness is a positive emotion hence there should be no harsh edges, points, mainly circular representations and should not be too dense because its a light hearted emotion. Since ancient times people dance when they’re happy, and seldom do we see stillness when being happy. Lines are thin and repetitive, and of various heights to convey rhythm and motion. I was inspired by a painting titled “Nude Descending a Staircase”. I made a simple print of calendula on their heads to show that they dance because they dance out of intrinsic joy.
Flower: unfortunately I could not find any flower, so I decided to use mono-print instead
Background information and idea: Surprise is a spontaneous and short-lived emotion hence for background I used cut-outs of triangle because the shape itself is sharp and angular. Triangle also reminds me of party hats and colourful celebration flags. Unfortunately when I remove the weights, it did not turn out as flat as being a texture as I envisioned. I hide the cropped down the mono-print to the part with flowers only because it correspond to my theme and visual impact it has on my audience would be a surprise (hopefully) because it’s hidden. 😀
Method: cut out triangles. Cropped down mono-print to flowers and hide it in between the folds.
Part 3: FINAL PRODUCT
For OSS submission, the default background is black.
However, on the day of presentation I decided to categorise my emotions into 2 parts, black for negative emotions (anger/ sadness/ fear) and white for positive emotions (love/joy/surprise), this way, there is more contrast to the piece and emotions can be neatly organised into place according to their basic characteristic and colour theme.
disclaimer: many flowers were harm during the process and I apologised:'(
Part 4: REFLECTION AND ADVICE
This project is the first in which I explored the use of different textures and lines to convey emotions. By studying the quality of lines, I realised just simple strokes can have a profound effect on our emotional state. Lines are integrated into every aspect of our lives, and is subconsciously influencing how we see and what we feel. Perhaps I can better appreciate the beauty of lines and the importance of it after this project. I get to understand my classmates better and take on their perspective of seeing and expressing, learn from one and other.Based on feedbacks, I will also improve on my ability to convert 3D objects and perspectives into 2D representation. Nonetheless, I had fun throughout this project.
Feedbacks from ms Joy and classmates:
Sensitivity towards texture and good utilisation of textures to convey emotions
Variation in backgrounds and mediums
Should use 3D objects as tools for mark making instead of the final product
Good reference with regard to the painting
Should adopt a more abstract approach to overall representation instead of how I feel subjectively
Cai Guo Qiang
Cai Guo Qiang is a Chinese artist, famous for his artworks made by inflaming gunpowder. His main motive is to investigate both the destructive and constructive nature of gunpowder, and introducing this unconventional methods to create contemporary art that centred around chaos.
I personally feel that his artworks touch on the idea of “spontaneous reaction” more than aesthetic beauty because how the artwork will turn out to be is unpredictable. Perhaps the process of creating art is more important to him because he actually invites audience to speculate the performative explosions caused by the gunpowder. The reason why he choose gunpowder is also well-respected, out of patriotism as it is one of the greatest inventions China had.
What I hope to extract from him, is how he link the medium to what he adore. He is a prominent nature-lover, evident from numerous paintings he did on villages, sceneries and the environment. In fact, one of the most beautiful and admired installation of his work is “unmanned nature”, a 45 metre-long, four metre-high gunpowder drawing. My favourite is “Chaos in the nature” because I feel like the explosive pattern resembles a flower or cloud by accident, and is intimidating to look at. Perhaps it might be helpful because my theme also relates to nature; flowers. Explosive nature of the gunpowder would also mean that I can take into consideration some of the possible presentation and organization I can adopt when I use flower since they have quite a similar appearance.