Mark making Experimental Process

Foundation 2D Project 1 process-Mark making experiment 

For the second and third week F2D lessons, we experimented with different techniques and tools to do mark making on paper! It was a process of discovery and exploration.

Tools I used for the second week: Leaves/Rocks/Roller/Paint brush/Monoprint/Soapsuds


The first tool I experimented with was different kinds of leaves, which was the tool that I posted on week 1. At first, I coated a leaf with block printing ink and stamped it on the paper.








Then I tried experimenting automatic technique, I dipped leaves in Chinese calligraphy ink, dabbed and swirled them on the paper without conscious control, just allowed my hand to move randomly across the paper.








Experimented with the same tool but different techniques, I tried monoprint technique with leaves.










The second tool was rock. I tried different mark making ideas by playing around with a rock, such as zigzags, loops, and scribbles.









I also experimented with soapsuds mixed with Chinese ink.













-Paint brush

Moving on, I tried playing around with a paint brush. Compared with leaves, paint brush was definitely a tool that easier to use and control. I tried spinning it on the paper to express the emotion of “glee”.









The last tool I used was a roller. After coated the roller with block printing ink, I tried stamping and rolling it on the paper.








I had a lot of fun during the first experiment exercise and really enjoyed it. I will try to explore and experiment more mark making ideas with different tools and techniques after researching on emotions.

I decided my six emotions on the third week.

– Aggression






The idea was inspired by action movies. I used two palette knives with block printing ink to draw on the paper by using their sharp tips, edges and diamond-shaped bottom surface. Tried to create a scene of an intense fighting.



The idea was from a literary work called ‘Robinson Crusoe’, as the word ‘isolation’ reminded me of a small island in the ocean. The colour of dark grey also assists to emphasize on the feeling of fear and hopeless when someone is isolated and disconnected from the world.

This is the second attempt, I was trying to move the focal point to the left side by following the rule of thirds, instead of placing it right in the middle of the strip.












I think it is a feeling like the skin is being pricked by thousands of needles, and also comes with some feelings of fear and stress.











I was trying to emphasize the sense of pressure by cutting off the parts without black paint at the top and bottom.



The idea was inspired by nature. I used tissue with black acrylic paint to represent the rotten stuff. Then I paste some dried, finely cut leaves of tea on the strip to simulate the scene of swarms of ants gathering around. This kind of scene makes me disgusted when I see it in real life.

















Blowing bubbles was one of the things that I loved to do when I was a child. I think it was full of joy and brought me a lot of happy memories. Also, the circular shape is an element of joy. Therefore, I was trying to convey the emotion of ‘Amusement’ through an amusing way, which was blowing bubbles directly onto the strip with a straw.






















Torment is a kind of feeling with severe mental or physical suffering. Personally, I am a person who is prone to headaches.  When I got a headache, I would become irritable because I cannot do anything even fall asleep. All I did was scratch my head vigorously. Therefore, I decided to use scratches to convey the emotion of torment.








Project 1-My Line is Emo

Foundation 2D Project 1: My Line is Emo


  • Aggression 

Definition: A feeling of anger or antipathy resulting in hostile or violent behavior; readiness to attack or confront.

Self Interpretation: Angry feelings and associated with violent action, which remind me of weapons used in the ancient wars. The tools I used were Chinese ink, and palette knives with their sharp tip and edges.

The tools I used were Chinese ink, and palette knives with their sharp tip and edges.

  • Disgust

Definition: A feeling of revulsion or strong disapproval aroused by something unpleasant or offensive.

Self Interpretation: Things make me uncomfortable or make me tremble when I see it. Like vomit, rotten food, and dead animal or insect body, and swarms of flies or ants are attracted and gather around.

The tools I used were tissue with Chinese ink and a bag of dry tea. The final result also looks like the bacterial infection.

  • Amusement

Definition: Anything that amuses; pastime; enjoyment

Self Interpretation: The Circular shape is a kind of fun element. I was trying to make this mark through an amusing way. So the thing I did was blowing bubbles directly onto the paper strip with a straw. Tried to create an atmosphere of happiness and enjoyment with different sizes and opacities of bubbles. The splashes around also helped a lot.

The tools I used were Chinese ink mixed with liquid detergent and a straw.

  • Isolation 

Definition: Far away from others or little in common with others

Self Interpretation: Different and distant from others and helpless, like a small island in the ocean. I placed the ‘island’ on the left side of the strip by following the rule of thirds.

The tools I used were tissue, Chinese ink, and a sponge.

  • Embarrassment

Definition: A feeling of self-consciousness, shame, or awkwardness

Self Interpretation: A feeling like being pricked by thousands of needles, and also comes with some feelings of fear and stress.

The tools I used were Chinese ink and cleaning brush.

  • Torment

Definition: A state of great physical or mental suffering; agony; misery.

Self Interpretation: A feeling of suffering or torture; like a fierce wild animal with unhealed wounds and being imprisoned in darkness.

I used a penknife to create the scratches on the paper covered with black acrylic paint.


Everyone has their own interpretation of emotions. Doing research is definitely one of the most helpful ways to open our minds. Besides, there is also another way to help us get inspiration, which is observing life. Art comes from life. : )