# Introducing…. 2D Project 3: Ego!

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Hello! I’m extremely excited to be starting a new project!

Let’s get started!

We started off with a simple class activity which honestly required some deep contemplation of myself and my future.

Class activity 1

We were told to write adjectives that described our personalities/traits/ attributes. This was a form of primary research- doing fieldwork right there in the classroom! Then we passed our paper around in our circle of ten, each of us adding in traits we thought our friends had.

Some things I wrote about myself: friendly, funny (some people may beg to differ) organised, meticulous, detail oriented.

My classmates added in: creative, hardworking, artistic,intellectual, good taste in graphics and good aesthetics! Thanks guys! (:

Class activity 2

This was the activity that stumped me a bit. We were told to write what we imagined ourselves to be/ or be doing in 2020 (in 5 years time). That was a bit tough for me, since I am very uncertain of what specific career I want to pursue.

But there is one thing I know for sure- that I definitely want to ‘invest’ in myself by taking classes and gaining new skills like calligraphy, henna, making sugar flowers, watercolour. I’m not very sure where Im headed, but I know that the path I want to take is one fill with lots of flowers!

Class Activity 3

The last activity wrapped up everything together. We were told to create mathematical equations to get us where we imagine ourselves to be in 2020.

Attributes I’d like to:

Multiply

Subtract

Overall reflection?

I need to take a deep look at myself again. I used to be able to easily write down my attributes so surely but this time around I was more hesitant and had trouble finding words to describe myself. Maybe I’ve changed? I will be elaborating on this further in my second post and my visual journal.

I feel like this project is going to involve a lot of self-discovery and deep thinking haha.

Anyways, we were told to do research on 5 colour theories:

This is actually the first time in 2D where we will be using colour, so I’ve done some research to see which theory/theories would be most useful to me in this project.

-It is basically a palette where there the different shades (colours) share a single hue, but they are different in terms of brightness and saturation

-Having this monochromatic palette makes the composition cohesive visually

-This palette consists of 3 colours that are situated next to each other on the colour wheel, creating sort of a gradient which is harmonious and pleasing to the eye.

-You usually choose one dominating colour, one supporting colour and an accent colour.

-This is an extension of the second colour theory, except that this takes into consideration the warm and cool colours on the colour wheel.

-Each temperature conveys a certain mood/vibe.

-Warm: Energetic, bright

https://edanafashion.files.wordpress.com/2015/10/ff40.jpg

-Cool: calm, soothing, peaceful

https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/236x/f3/f7/46/f3f7464e18260601446a5eb118ec6531.jpg

-This colour scheme makes use of opposite colours on the colour wheel paired together, which makes a statement with the high contrast.

-The juxtaposition works well to draw attention to something. It can often create a very bold effect if done well, but can also clash if the wrong tones of the colours are used.

-This is a spin off of complementary hues, two colours adjacent to the base complement colour are used, mainly to ease the stark contrast.

https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/736x/be/22/a7/be22a723cf9172d7c81b3a565ca132af.jpg

I’m quite amazed at the science behind colours. I honestly thought that this would be rather boring, but it is quite the opposite- this knowledge opens up your eyes to a whole new world of colours.

Now that I’ve explored all the 5 different theories, how will I be applying it to my project?

I personally feel that each colour theory is a reflection of a personality. Someone who chooses the Complementary Hues is rather bold, daring and unconventional, likes to take risks, whereas someone who chooses the Monochromatic Harmony is someone who likes to play on the safe side, and likes things to be organised. So I think I might not be sticking to just one colour theory. I think it will depend on what traits I want to use, and I still have to finalise my concept.

Also, so far I think I am the sort of person who usually has the monochromatic harmony, mainly because I’m not sure how to pair colours together and what makes them work. To think about it, it is reflected in what I wear, the colours of the flower I pick etc. I usually stick with the safe choices: black scarf or dark blue scarf everyday hahaha, pink flowers with green leaves. Now that I’ve had an understood how all of this works, I’m extremely excited to apply this to real life! You might even see me wearing a colourful outfit (one day…)!

PS. Joy was so sweet and gave us all a colour wheel each !(Thank you so much Joy!)

I have so many amazing artists to share but I’ll try to restrain myself by sharing only 2 for now. I’ll share more in my visual journal.

The first artist is Amira Rahim.

Her artwork is simply beautiful. Much of it is abstract, which is rather surprising- I think I’ve developed an appreciation and love for abstract art. Each art piece is like an explosion of colours that is simply breathtaking. I could stare at one picture for hours, studying how she cleverly applies paint and pairs certain hues. I can’t really describe her work and do it justice, so you’ll have to see it yourself.

She definitely understands colours so I’m hoping to be able to study her paintings and apply her techniques to my compositions.

I know that we are supposed to be following one of the colour theories, and each of her works probably has the whole colour wheel in it, but when I study it closely, she does make use of certain ‘rules’ in certain areas and layering which makes it all together a successive piece.

I also feel like her style is extremely expressive and she lets the colours speak for itself without having to draw anything literal, and I’d like to use this as an inspiration in my works, because I definitely would like to include abstract compositions!

The second artist is Yao Cheng.

Yao Cheng mainly dabbles in watercolour, like how Amira specialises in acrylic /oil painting. Her work encompasses quite a range of my favourites-abstract and literal, flowers and fruits (and even vegetables) to geometric shapes!

You can see here that there is a more obvious choice of colour palette, and in the picture above, she is in her own way being a florist- painting her own flowers and arranging them in a certain way, according to the colour scheme.

As you can see, the my reference artists all have extremely colourful and bright artworks, which I feel is a reflection of what I like- floral, bright colours. It is also, in a way, a reflection of who I am- a mix of everything.

The artists I chose will definitely inspire me not only in their colours of the works, but their style as well.

I’m trying my very best not to pour everything out onto OSS so that I have something to start off my visual journal for this project! It’s going to be different this time! More colours!

1. To re-evaluate myself. I think I will do more fieldwork and ask my family and friends what attributes they see in me.
2. To start off my visual journal with many colourful reference photos to keep me inspired and create a ‘mood board’. I know its quality over quantity, but I’ve been neglecting my journal, so I aim to do at least 6 pages! Let’s see how that goes hehe.
3. To experiment with the colour wheel and get more familiar with it and using the proper terms.
4. Come up with a concept AND the mathematical equations ready for consultation with Joy on Thursday.

All images are taken from each artist’s websites.

www.amirarahim.com

www.yaochengdesign.com

# 2D Project 2 Final Wrap Up!

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Hello!

This is the final post for Project 2!

My concept is based on each of the 4 lines of the nursery rhyme “There Was An Old Woman Who Lived In A Shoe”. It explores the 4 different types of mothers, each dysfunctional in their own ways.

Throughout the 4 compositions you will see little minion children, and in each composition they behave differently, reflecting the type of mother they have.

I actually forgot to mention this during my presentation, but I decided to arrange the compositions in a square because I felt that the ‘eye compositions’ should be diagonal opposites, as well as both ‘chaotic compositions’ being the other diagonal (like a criss -cross). This would create an overall sense of balance for the viewer, showing that even though I deconstructed the nursery rhyme and interpreted each line rather differently, when you see the whole picture, ultimately they all make and belong to the same one nursery rhyme.

I was wondering whether I should have arranged it that both ‘eye compositions’ were on the top- but then I realised it wouldn’t really make sense visually and conceptually.

As you go through each of these compositions, before you read the explanations, the question you should be asking is this: What kind of a mom do these children have?

Why? Because it’s much more interesting to let you draw the conclusions yourself. Instead of showing you the mom’s facial expression yourself by using obvious visual compositions (eg. using a dingbat that shows a distressed woman to show that she can’t control her children), you can judge for yourself what the personality of the mom is by the way her children behave.

Let’s begin!

Composition 1: “There was once an old woman who lived in a shoe”

Dingbats used:

-Shoe (mine)

-Balloons (mine)

– 2 different dingbats of children (all mine)

-Mary skipping (Hsin Wei’s)

-Pony (Andrew’s )

-Barbie doll (Andrew’s )

-Kitten (Justin’s )

-Lollipop (Pei Yi’s)

Explanation:

-What kind of a mother lives in a shoe with her children? A fun mother! She lets chaos reign, therefore you see children everywhere and there is no central focus. I chose to design the composition this way as to invite the viewer to look close and see the different fun activities the little minion children are doing.

Speaking of which, if you look closer, you will be able to see that in reality, the activities the children are doing rather unsafe and risky- and they are doing the most ridiculous things! You can see a baby hanging off the balloon or climbing up the shoe on a pony!

-The dingbats I chose are to create a whimsical atmosphere and add elements of excitement by exaggerating them to amplify or skew the function of the dingbat. For instance, the lollipop is enlarged into a colossal lollipop– every child’s dream.

-Kittens are generally harmless, but when it is ten times bigger than the children, there is a sense of danger here that the mother has put the children in. It is almost like she lets her children play with a baby tiger!

-Also, when you see the illustrations of the nursery rhyme you see the mother living in a beat up man’s shoe, tattered and chunky. But when you see the high heel– you think, this must be one stylish, fashion conscious mom! In another sense it is also rather impractical as the high heel is extremely unstable as a house. The choice of the shoe reflects the mother’s personality as well- impractical, fun, easy going mother.

Composition 2: “She had so many children she didn’t know what to do”

Dingbats used:

-Scared eye (mine)

– Boy laughing (mine)

-Woman sitting in the chair (mine)

Explanation:

Nursery rhymes usually talk about a mothers love to their children. But here I wanted to change the perception completely. I wanted to show a mother who has is in a state of helplessness due to her mental illness. She has lost her mind and lost control over her child/children. But one thing remains ambiguous- perhaps she has many children or maybe she just has one and she sees the same one being ‘multiplied’- we can’t really tell since her perception is distorted. Her child/children have become alien to her. There is no love, but fear and disturbance because of what her state of mind is.

This whole composition is to reflect her psychotic mind and to give an eerie, vibe as the mother feels her child/children are mocking her. Also, this was largely inspired by Hannah Hoch’s dada style- the use of exaggeration and collage style like compositions.

-The scared eye is enlarged to hide her face. We don’t need to see her face to know what is going on with her. The startling eye almost jumps out at you to suggest bewilderment, contrasting the cool composure she is taking on, sitting on the chair.

-To further enhance the eeriness and psychotic feel, I created ‘eyelashes’ out of the same dingbat of the laughing child. The repetition of the dingbat in the eyelashes and the background is to show how her world is ‘closing in’ on her and her child/ children seems to be the source of her discomfort, unease and anxiety.

The dingbat is actually meant to be really happy and bright but using it in this composition now distorts my feeling towards it- it seems more dark and twisted and slightly creepy.

^A gif I made on Joy’s suggestion. (Thanks Joy! They’re pretty cool!) The different pictures show my experiments for this composition.

Here’s another one that I made but didn’t make the cut. It also didn’t make sense that the children were on her eyeball haha.

Composition 3: “She gave them some broth without any bread”

Dingbats used:

-Eye (mine)

– 2 different dingbats of children (all mine)

-Mary skipping (Hsin Wei’s)

-Sniper (Jordan’s)

Explanation:

– I used the eye here again, but this time to convey an opposite, contrasting personality: the rigidness of the strict tiger mom who wants to enforce discipline. She has everything under control. Because of her personality, I wanted to convey her as a military officer, therefore using straight lines and ‘war’ imagery. The fact that the eye is central to the composition is to suggest that she has a 360 degree control and that she watches her children carefully, ‘keeping an eye’ on them.

-You can see the little minion children here making an appearance again. However, this time they are arranged in straight, strict lines to mimic the military rows soldiers make. They are ‘kept in line’ and are under control- very orderly.

-The use of Jordan’s sniper is to reinforce how she she keeps her guard up at all times. The sniper is placed all around the eye, rotated at different positions to convey movement like how someone with a gun is alert and will ‘pan left and right’ as he moved around the room to detect any suspicious activity.

^ A gif of my work-in-progress in creating this composition

Composition 4: “And whipped them all soundly and put them to bed”

Dingbats used:

-Woman lying down (mine)

– 2 different dingbats of children (all mine)

-Bulldozer (mine)

-Train (Brenda’s)

-Mary skipping (Hsin Wei’s)

Barbie doll (Andrew’s)

The first question you should ask when you see this is: Why are these children doing this to their mother?

Explanation:

– This mother is the abusive step-mother. Here, we see that the children get their revenge- they send HER to bed. One idea I had was to use the concept of Hansel & Gretel pushing the witch in the oven, but I liked the Gulliver’s Travels concept wayy better!

-I purposely made composition 4 similar to composition 1 in terms of layout. Many of the same dingbats are used. The children are riding the ponies in composition 1, but it is to have fun and adventure. Here, it they use the ponies almost like soldiers ‘waging war’ haha. You have children everywhere to convey chaos. In this composition, the children have a revolution and chain their step-mother.

-I decided to add in the bulldozer and the train to suggest the creativity of the children in using their toys to make their way to the sandbox and to dig the sand. I find it quite humorous actually!

Despite having no knowledge of Photoshop whatsoever, I am extremely happy that I am able to learn a lot just by doing this project. All those hours spent with trial and error and playing around with tones, cropping etc was totally worth it! Again, just like other previous project, this definitely pushed me out of my comfort zone but I am definitely pleased with the outcome and that I went through this whole process!

But most importantly, one main thing I should takeaway from this project is that you should be flexible and open. Take those curveballs thrown at you to push your creativity and potential and you will definitely be pleasantly surprised by the results!

For this project, I find that it was much more easier to document my progress on OSS, however I still have some sketches and research done in my visual journal albeit considerably less than the previous project!

Instructors feedback:

• Joy liked the manipulation of the ‘child laughing’ dingbat to create eyelashes- she felt that it was creative.
• She liked that it wasn’t too literal
• Most importantly, she especially likes the fact that there was no need to depict the mother to show what kind of mother it is.

Classmates’ feedback:

# 2D Project 2 Dingbats

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Hello!

ORIGINAL

Here are the 10 original dingbats I made for the first concept, based on the poem by Margaret Atwood, “It is Dangerous to Read Newspapers.”

And actually, I’m quite surprised! I used 5 out of the 10 original dingbats I created in my final compositions. I also used many of my classmates’s original dingbats. This just goes to show that when a curveball is thrown at you, you should just embrace it and be flexible!

NEW

And here are the new dingbats I made for the second concept, based on the nursery rhyme “There Was An Old Woman Who Lived In A Shoe.”

I will be posting the wrap up of Project 2 in the next few days!

# Project 2 (Progress)- Part 4

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Hello everyone!

After consultation with Joy last week, I got the thumbs up for my concept and she gave me some things to think about:

1. How I want my format/layout of my 4 compositions to be

2. How I can unify my 4 compositions- funnily enough, we had the same idea! To use the concept of Gulliver’s Travels in one of the composition. She also suggested using the miniature children throughout the 4 compositions to tie them all in together.

Remember my ”What’s next?’ section at the end of the Part 3 post? I will be answering and giving updates on each of the section.

1. Playing around with more dingbats

Looking back on the compositions I’ve created, I’m not that satisfied with the visual outcome. I feel like it could look better and more interesting and I could push the design in terms of abstraction since I feel I already have a strong concept.

So I spent quite a while experimenting and improving my existing compositions. I noticed that I kind of used compositions from my previous concept about war. Now I realise there are links and similarities that I can draw between the two concepts. I hope that as I explore I will be able to make more connections.

The original composition:

So far I’m making good progress and will be churning out more!

2. Just to reiterate, I have decided to use all 4 lines of the nursery rhyme.

3. For my first original poem about war, I wanted to focus on my compositions having a Constructivism feel and style as it was most appropriate for my concept. Since changing it now, I feel like Dadaism would be more appropriate for my current concept, and Hannah Hoch’s style is really inspiring for my nursery rhyme.

Dadaism challenged “conventional aesthetic and cultural values by producing works marked by nonsense, travesty, and incongruity”.

I have created my own personal checklist to keep in line with the Dada feel.

a)Nonsensical!

b)Travesty: An exaggerated or grotesque imitation, such as a parody of a literary work. Mockery, distortion, corruption.

c) Incongruity: lacking in harmony, incompatible. Not in agreement, as with principles; inconsistent:

I feel like my concept does the same. Nursery rhymes are supposed to be about mothers who love and care for the children properly, whereas my concept deconstructs the rhyme, exploring different types of mothers, each dysfunctional in their own sense. Also, in my compositions, when I represent what the children do and are surrounded by is a reflection of the type of mother they have. So I might not necessarily picture the mother there, but the environment is enough to tell the convey the story.

To think about it, Dadaism is quite an extreme form of abstraction as it will be pushing me out of my comfort zone as I am the type of person who needs things to make sense and look the part. So there will always be a tension between my inner design style and the Dada style and I have to find a balance between both. I have a feeling things will be a bit twisted. But I’m looking forward to it!

1. To finalise my compositions for tomorrow’s printing (AAAAHHHHH) and put it in the format required
2. To gather my thoughts and prepare my presentation for Thursday’s critque!

# Project 2 (Progress)- Part 3

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Hello again!

I’ve finally decided on a nursery rhyme and I will be taking you through my progress so far.

The nursery rhyme I have chosen is….

Woohoo! I finally know what nursery rhyme I want to do!

My concept is basically focusing on the old woman as a mother. As I mentioned in the previous post, there was a Christian version of this nursery rhyme where the old woman had a different personality. So I thought it would be interesting if I could explore the concept of motherhood: What would different mothers do if they had that many children? I thought it also be pretty cool if I could explore the different personalities/temperament/attitudes mothers have. Just a thought, not sure about this yet- but maybe different cultures as well? (For instance, how would a big family from India differ from a big family from lets say, America or Singapore?). It just occurred to me that she might not have necessarily given birth to all these children- it just says that “she had so many children she didn’t know what to do”. So she could have adopted some of them- or she might be a caretaker? Haha.

It was a huge struggle finding nursery rhymes that had something to do with my old concept (war, newspaper, perspective), so I decided to just scrap that and start a new one.

Actually….. maybe somehow I can use my old concept-where the mother is so exhausted and tired from having so many children to take care of that she becomes delusional and starts seeing things? Haha! Just a thought!

*(An update 5 days later: )Ok, I’ve already decided. I will be doing each of the 4 compositions based on each of the 4 lines of the nursery rhyme.*

Since we can choose 4 different lines or even choose the same line for the 4 compositions, I’ll be researching to see whether there are any other nursery rhymes which touch on the subject/relationship between a mother and child. Perhaps maybe (Rockabye Baby- about how native American women put their babies to sleep OR Hush Little Baby-The lyrics promise all kinds of rewards to the child if he or she is quiet). The possibilities are endless really!

Remember how I said it would be really cool if I could my siblings’ baby photos? There might be a problem though- the photos are probably really low resolution and might not be able to be converted to half tone images. But I’ll update on how it goes!

Here are some of the compositions I experimented with today. They’re not much but it was the best I could come up with!

Some other visual ideas:

• The children looking like baby birds- all in a nest and their mother feeding them? (Frazzled mother)
• Or children on a conveyor belt like a factory and the mother washing/ cleaning each of them? (Systematic mother)

The next step in this process is for me to:

1.Play around with more dingbats and create more half tone images.

2.Finalise the lines (or line) I will be using.

3.Using my inspiration from my research on Dadaism, Constructivism, and my reference artists of choice to strengthen my concept and compositions.

# 4D Assignment 3 (Hush A Bye Baby)- Retelling Myths

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This was the brief for Assignment 3: Rewrite a myth in an updated, modern version from the point of view of another character in the story.

I decided to use Rumpelstiltskin, a Brothers Grimm fairytale. You can read the original story here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rumpelstiltskin

This is my synopsis of my modern re-telling of Rumpelstiltskin. Enjoy!

HUSH A BYE BABY

Tom Stiltskin is a 40 year old janitor in school who has worked as a janitor for as long as the students remember. He is invisible in the crowds, nobody acknowledges him as he sweeps the floor with his head down. But as he cleans, he always observes others. When the school term starts, a new girl, Jenna, joins. Being rich and pretty, she immediately gets drawn in the popular group and begins to hang out with friends who are bad influences. On the first day of school, Tom notices that Jenna is new and has joined the popular crowd, Marshall has gained weight and that Kim cut her hair.

Weeks pass by, and Tom’s life in the school is routine and mundane. He continues people-watching. When he brings rubbish to the garbage disposal, he passes by a group of students smoking. He makes eye contact with Jenna for a second then she turns away.

Later that afternoon, while he is cleaning, he overhears Jenna and her friend talking in the bathroom. Jenna is cries and tells her friend that she got pregnant at one of the parties last month and she wants to abort her baby. Upon hearing this, Tom looks up in interest but the girls leave the bathroom.

The school has a prom that night, and Jenna and her friends have their own private ‘party’ in one of the labs doing drugs. In the midde of the party, the police conduct a surprise raid on receving an anonymous phone call. Everyone runs out, including Jenna. A police officer runs after her.She runs, desperately looking for a place to hide. She crashes into Tom and begs him to help hide her and cover for her, but Tom doesn’t want to get involved. Both of them hear the police officer coming and she again pleads and cries for him to help her, and out of desperation she tells him she will give him money. He tells her he doesn’t want money but he wants her baby. She reluctantly agrees and so he hides her in the janitor’s closet and starts to sweep. The police officer comes by and asks Tom whether he’s seen a girl. Tom shakes his head and continues sweeping. He thanks him and leaves.

After their agreement, Tom goes home excitedly to tell his wife the good news. His wife cries in joy, sobbing that it has been so long. Over the months, we see that Tom starts becoming protective over Jenna, carrying her books, bringing her food etc. She becomes embarrassed and is resistant to his help. One time, he suddenly touches her stomach. She slaps him angrily. After that, she tries to avoid him but he starts to shadow her. When he comes home, he is about to tell his wife what happened but his wife surprises him with a baby cot filled with toys and baby clothes.

The next day in school, he catches Jenna smoking and angrily stomps out the cigarette. She starts to become more afraid at how obsessive he has become so she stops going to school. Tom notices she doesn’t come to school anymore so he starts driving by Jenna’s house everyday, watching her through her windows from afar. He stays in his car for hours everyday, just watching. On one of the nights he gets out of his car and walks towards her house. He climbs in through the window and creeps onto Jenna sleeping. She doesn’t stir awake when he places his hands on her stomach and caresses it. He hums ‘Hush-A-Bye Baby’ as he does this. Jenna, who is sleeping, thinks this is part of her dream. This continues for weeks. He starts hiding in her cupboards and watches her talk to her belly, smiling at the sight. Jenna feels that someone is watching her but she never finds Tom.

One time, while he is hiding in her cupboard, he sees Jenna doing what seems to be drugs and he bursts out of her cupboard to stop her. She screams and take out her gun from her drawer. They both try to get the gun and Jenna misfires at the ceiling. Jenna’s next door neighbour hears the gunshots and calls the police.

Meanwhile, inside the house the struggle for the gun between Tom and Jenna continues. They scream and argue- Tom insists that the baby is his and is angry that Jenna is trying to run away from her promise. Jenna kicks Tom in the balls and grabs the gun. A police officer suddenly bursts in to see Jenna about to shoot Tom. He orders Jenna to drop the gun at the count of three. She still refuses to back down and screams angrily at Tom. The police officer fires his gun at her. Tom dives in front of her and gets shot in the chest. As he is dying, he touches Jenna’s stomach and whispers to it. Both the police officer and Jenna look on in shock. Tom dies.

The next scene then shows Jenna preparing a basket of muffins. She drives to a house and presses the doorbell. A woman opens the door. It is Tom’s wife. Jenna tells Tom’s wife that she is sorry about Tom. As she hands over the basket, she shoots Tom’s wife in the chest with the gun through the tea towel. Jenna closes the door and walks back to her car, eating a muffin.

A few months later, Jenna gives birth in the hospital. She nurses it and lies down with the baby for sometime. The nurse comes in to clean her baby. Jenna smiles and kisses the baby as she hands the baby over. The nurse hums “Hush-A-Bye Baby” as she walks out of the room with the baby. Jenna hears the familiar tune and looks up, but she then she continues reading her book. Meanwhile, the nurse takes off her surgical mask and scrubs to a skirt and a tank top which shows the scar on her chest. She smiles at the baby in her arms as she walks out of the hospital, humming her favourite tune.

The End

This the film poster I made for the story:

Credits:

Images for the poster are taken from the following websites:

http://www.womenembracingbrilliance.com/2013/the-doula-difference/

https://www.flickr.com/photos/42503424@N06/7726450082

# 2D Project 1 + Visual Journal

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I hereby present my 2D Project 1 on lines! This post will be a culmination of the whole project- from the beginning of the process to the end. I will be breaking it down through the following categories:

My process (including photos of my Visual Journal)

a)Research on reference artists

b)Experimentation of techniques (Visual Journal)

c)Development of concept (Identifying my direction)

My final outcome

a) Format / methodology- choice of media

b) Final artwork

c) Overall thoughts on the project and challenges faced

Let’s begin!

a) Research on reference artists

Here are some snippets of the research I did on Sol LeWitt and Red:

Sol LeWitt:

Red:

Towards the end of this very long post I will be commenting on how my research has helped my work and influenced my designs. I will be referring to some of my designs as I talk about this, that’s why I chose to put this towards the end of the post.

Here is the pdf if you would like to see the whole thing

2D Reference Artists Updated

b)Experimentation of techniques (Visual Journal)

I had a ‘virtual visual journal’ as well for my initial stages- where I defined and pinned up photos that could provide me with visual inspiration. Joy actually suggested that it was better to print out the photos and stick it into my visual journal, but I felt that it was more optimal for me to have it as a soft copy as I could add and delete photos based on my concept.

Here are some images of it:

I experimented with many many different techniques and designs. Unfortunately I stupidly threw away some of my experiments without documenting them so I shall display what I have salvaged.

Monoprinting

Monoprinting was definitely an eye opener for me. It introduced me to the world of abstract art and automatism- there was beauty in the fact that each piece was unique and I always found myself always holding my breath before peeling of the paper from the rubber mat to see what is printed.

There is a certain unrefined, raw quality and grittiness to monoprinting that greatly appealed to me, and that’s why I chose to use this technique for the last 4 emotions (turbulent, indecisive, ambiguous and exhausted). Previously, the positive new emotions the dots shared were expressed through the marrying of the two mediums. I wanted to create contrast to this shared positive joy with monoprinting to bring out the negative, dark cloud of emotions that surrounded both dots.

c)Development of concept (Identifying my direction)

I wanted to do a play on Paul Klee’s line, so I titled my project ‘Two dots went for a walk’. I wanted to explore the relationship and interaction between two dots- from the beginning before they meet, their experiences and the emotions they share when their lines/paths intersect, and the possibility of their lines diverging after they meet.

The dots symbolise the relationship between a male and a female and their emotions they share together.

Without really meaning to, my concept became more of a narrative, telling the story of two ‘dots’, and expressing each emotion through the personality of each dot.

Let me take you through this narrative.

So in the beginning, before the dots meet, the female experiences ‘anxious’ and ‘distracted’ while the male is ‘awkward’ and embarrassed’.

Then after they meet (intersect) and begin to share experiences, they share new emotions together (spontaneous, lyrical, sensual and nonsensical).

After the honeymoon stage, they begin to find out things about each other- mostly negative ones . The female is ‘bizarre’, ‘fragile’ and ‘systematic’. The male has opposite emotions: ‘psychotic’, ‘aggressive’ and ‘sloven’

Because they start to show each other their true colours, their relationship becomes rocky and they share the same negative emotions: ‘turbulent’,’exhausted’ and their relationship status is ‘ambiguous’ and ‘indecisive’- they don’t know where it is going and how it will end.

a) Format & methodology-choice of media

I chose the 4 X A2 format on Joy’s suggestion (thanks Joy!)- and I felt it suited my concept the best. The top part (first two rows) represents the dots before they meet, and the ones below represents after they begin sharing and revealing emotions.

I wanted to use mediums to represent each dot. So for one dot (the male) I chose to exclusively use pen/marker, whereas for the other dot (the female) I chose to use only acrylic paint. I wanted the male to be represented by bold, thick, and relatively crazy line whereas the female would have more intricate, detailed lines- therefore I felt that the mediums I chose was suitable for each.

As I did each design, I now realised that I somehow embodied the persona of each dot- which was helped by my choice of medium. For instance, when I was doing the design for the female dot, I had extreme focus and had to be very detailed and precise. The acrylic paint I used wasn’t conventionally applied using a paintbrush- I squeezed it out of a plastic cellophane tube instead, giving me more control over it. For the male, I had more freedom in my hand movement and my concentration didn’t have to be as intense as the the designs for the female.

So before they meet, the emotions the dots experience individually have more singular lines of the same medium. I played with telling their story in the sense that I gave the female emotions such as ‘anxious’ and ‘distracted’ and for the male-‘awkward’ and ‘embarrassed’.Their coming together would have the two mediums being mixed as they share these new emotions (sensual, lyrical, spontaneous, nonsensical). These emotions had more motion and energy to represent the newfound connection. After they pass the initial stage, they discover each others dark side, which leads them to experience more negative emotions together. For these emotions, I chose to use monoprinting as I felt that this technique was better suited in conveying these ‘darker’ and more complex emotions.

Doing each design, I had to embrace the persona of each dot. For example, when I was designing ‘Awkward’, halfway through, I was rather unsatisfied with how it didn’t look as perfect and equal as I wanted to. But then I realised that this was the persona of the dot I was designing for. This ‘male dot’ didn’t care for the finest of details- being detail oriented was the personality of the female dot. So designing the emotions of the ‘male dot’ I was relatively more relaxed and expressive and free, not worrying too much about details.

b) Final artwork

I apologise for how small the photos are, so the best thing I can do is give you closeups of each emotion:

If I were to take you though all 18 emotions, we would be here for a very long time. So I shall take you through a few of my favourites.

Sensual: If you look carefully, the edges of the petals between two roses have the silhouette of two people facing each other in an intimate way. I wanted to incorporate this subtle feature because it represents the intimacy of this emotion and how the emotion ‘Sensual’ is not for the public- only the people in the relationship share it.

Spontaneous: I ditched the acrylic paint in a henna cone with the fine point and squeezed it out directly from the the acrylic paint tube. I used my fingers to form the designs using short swift stroked to create textured. I feel like the process and idea of this itself was spontaneous and really embodies the meaning.

Bizarre: This is one of the most abstract designs of all of them, and I feel this is what best represents automatism, inspired heavily by ‘The Ghosts of My Friends’. Actually, for this I used acrylic paint in a henna cone and wrote out (in cursive) a ‘strange secret’ the female dot would have. Then I folded the paper so it became smudged and the words became strange-bizarre patterns.

Indecisive: This is actually a mono print of a granny knot. This type of knot is insecure, and can slip when subjected to increasing tension, and therefore must be avoided. I chose this to be the last emotion. It represents the conflicted point of the relationship where the two dots are right now.Will they stay where they are or will they eventually diverge? It also plays on the phrase ‘tying the knot’ aka getting married- will they secure their relationship or will their indecisiveness cause them to fall out?

c)  Challenges faced & Overall thoughts on the project

I struggled a lot with conveying and responding to the emotions in an abstract manner and without being too literal. Initially, I also struggled with coming up my concept, but I overcame this by writing out all the emotions onto post it notes and tried to make sense of it. I somehow instinctively arranged all the emotions into a narrative and it all came naturally.

Also, one of the biggest challenges I faced was using acrylic paint using a plastic henna cone. I had to practise doing it many times to get the steady lines and the right pressure. It was very difficult but I managed to do somewhat of a decent job.

Now that I have finished the whole project, on reflection, I didn’t take direct visual inspiration from both artists. Rather, I was inspired by their ideas and methods and I translated it into my own.

For Sol LeWitt, I mentioned how I wanted to create simple, geometric art to branch out from my usual flowery designs. Although I couldn’t use some of his ideas (especially the concept of an idea being art itself like of an architect having construction workers carry out his ‘art’) because I had to do everything by myself, I was inspired by his aesthetics and tried to incorporate the minimalist style in ‘Systematic’ and ‘Fragile’- with the use of a lot of straight lines.

As for Red, she inspired me through her methodology-how she embraced expressing messages through her medium and pushing away conventional tools. Although mine wasn’t as cool and out there as hers was, I did try to go out of the box. This was by the use of acrylic paint almost exclusively in a henna plastic cone. The acrylic paint represented one dot (the ‘female’ dot), and the henna cone that contains it represents how uptight and controlled her personality is. As a result, the acrylic paint that came out gave thin, long lines that created meticulous details. In the emotion ‘Distracted’ you can clearly see that. You would think that a distracted mind would have many different pictures/images/ideas flowing around- yet I chose this design to reflect that even her mind, when distracted, is absentminded in a ‘neat’ and ‘controlled’ manner- something like a version of a neat doodle.

Weekly Progress

Week 1:

2D Reference Artists Updated

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DN1002 Project 1 Critique Sheet