Summative Field Assessment: Reflection

PAINTING PERFORMANCE – 500 word REFLECTION

I decided to undertake the painting performance module to push the boundaries of my practice and explore new ways of creating artwork. I was a little nervous about what to expect but eager to get stuck in to the challenges that were to be presented to me. I learnt to utilise my own body as a tool for painting and discover what marks could be made.

In the first practical session, I was determined to explore the possibilities of making marks with my body and really move the paint around in inivative ways. The exercise where I was encouraged to paint using a brush and use my left hand to make marks made me consider the role of a paintbrush and to what extent it controls me. I felt much closer to the artwork applying the paint with my body and realised that using a paintbrush to apply paint can actually somewhat remove the artist from the work.

I had the opportunity to work from an aerial perspective by dropping paint from a scaffolding block. This removed any control I may have wanted to have on where the paint landed on the paper and forced me to create a completely free piece. I learned to remove any preconceptions of what my outcomes may look like and to be surprised by the marks the paint created. In the past I have focussed on finished outcomes and struggled to be free in my approach to art making. I have learnt that exploring the possibilities of art is highly important and that actually an artist’s experimentation can be more of a success that a final culmination of that experimentation.

Collaboration was a crucial part of this module and taught me vital skills about working with others which will undoubtedly benefit me indefinitely. Paint performance is a highly enjoyable practice and not only did I gain personal confidence but I learnt that the process of art-making can actually be more interesting than the final outcome. Documentation was a crucial part of my experience on this module and encouraged me to document my subject work in more depth.

One of the sessions encouraged me to experiment with my choice of materials and push the boundaries of what can be used to make marks in art. I learned that you don’t have to stick to conventional art materials and that sometimes it is more appropriate to use materials not typically associated with art to convey a certain message or image. This I feel is relevant to my subject work. I am more confident in experimentation now and want to explore my materials and not just stick to working with tubes of pre-made paint. I have just started experimenting with creating a connection between art and nature in my work and this field option gave me a chance to incorporate natural matter into my final piece and mix natural materials into paint which is something that will influence my subject work.

DRAWING A EXPERIENCE – 500 Word REFLECTION 

I chose to undertake the drawing as experience module because I felt quite distanced from the practice of drawing and thought that I would be introduced to new techniques to apply to my practice and reinthuse my interest. This module has not disappointed, it has pushed the boundaries of what I previously considered to be drawing and equipped me with new tools and techniques to document not just the things I see but my experience of the world as a whole.

I have learnt that drawing can be used to provide someone with a visual insight into an experience . Drawing does not have to be about documenting something exactly, it can be more representational. Once I got used to the idea of creating marks to represent sensory experiences, I started to understand drawing as a much more vital part of an artistic individuals life than I ever realised.

Throughout the module, I feel I have been building my own visual language step by step whilst trying to decipher how to use that language to convey a certain experience. Being introduced to sensory stories and learning that visual stimulation can aid so many people’s understanding really inspired me to focus on working on creating marks that universally could be recognised. Having to represent smells, tastes, sounds and touch using pen and paper was incredibly challenging but really made me aware of my own senses and forced me to deeply concentrate on thinking about how I would represent experience.

The musicality of drawing session also gave me an insight into how you can respond to the surroundings, the only difference being that I was tasked with responding to the senses and experiences through drawing rather than through music. Drawing in the dark environment of the Opera unable to see the paper forced me not to think about the outcome and only to focus on documenting my experience.

Both the materiality of drawing and the psychogeography workshops were the most beneficial, influencial to me. In the psychogeography session, I almost mapped the pathways that I walked, physically documenting my journey on paper. This encouraged me to think about the versatility of ways that you could document an experience of landscape or environment which could be a useful skill to tie into my subject work. The materiality of drawing workshop encouraged me to work with a variety of materials and to utilise every day items to make marks with. The use of unconventional drawing tools made me consider the fact that the object you use to draw with and the connatations of that item are embedded in the drawing. I am keen to link this into my subject work and with a theme of art and nature running through, I want to use natural materials to make tools from and connect my art to the natural world more deeply. This is something I would not have experimented with if It wasn’t for undertaking this field module.

OVERALL SUMMATIVE 500 WORD REFLECTION – How has Field fed into my Subject work?

The field projects that I undertook have definitely affected the direction of my studies and fed into my subject work. Before undertaking these modules I was working with themes surrounding landscape and place, my interests soon shifted to creating a connection between the art world and the natural world and my experiences of field equipped me with the implements and ideas to be experimental, branch out from the restrictions of more traditional mediums and tools and explore the relationship between art and nature.

Painting Performance encouraged me to consider the process of art-making far more significantly. I have struggled to be experimental in the past and explore ideas in depth, this option gave me the opportunity to be less controlled and more free when producing art. I have become more confident and consider experimenting with materials and techniques a strength of my practice now. The session that pushed the limits of what could be used to make marks and gave me an insight into using unconventional, everyday items as paint was a stand out learning experience. I learnt that it can be more appropriate to use materials not typically associated with art to convey a concept or idea. I explored mixing organic matter into paint in my final performance and continued to do so within my subject work but how could I create a connection between art and nature when I am using plasticy man-made acrylic paints to produce my work? I progressed to grinding my own pigments from nature and making my own paints, limiting the colour palette of my work and connecting my outcomes more deeply to the natural world. This module also encouraged me to film the process of some of my subject work like tool making and drawing outdoors.

Drawing as Experience has broadened my understanding of what drawing can be and equipped me with the means to document not just the things I see but my experience of the world as a whole. The materiality of Drawing session within this module was an invaluable learning experience for me and has been highly influential to my practice. Being introduced to the idea of making my own painting and drawing tools from found everyday items inspired me and encouraged me to think about the possibilities of using natural materials to make marks within my subject work. Drawing and painting with a tool made from natural objects conveys a much deeper connection to nature than painting natural imagery with a typical paintbrush. The tools that I have made are artworks in themselves.

Combining my experiences of field has pushed my subject work forward and allowed me to experiment with techniques and materials that I would not have employed otherwise. I would never have thought of physically using natural materials to make paints if I hadn’t undertaken painting performance, nor would I have made tools to apply the paints with from nature without inspiration from drawing as experience, two key components of my subject outcomes.

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PDP: Constellation: An Overview and Reflection

Undertaking Constellation this year has been a fairly positive experience. At the beginning of the year we were asked to chose an option related to the different areas of the art world, I feel the choice of options was varied and there was something to feed everyone’s interests. I chose to undertake the “Puzzling out Contemporary Art” option. Before attending these lectures, I struggled to appreciate a lot of today’s contemporary artworks mostly because I didn’t understand what the artist and artwork was trying to convey. This option explained the concepts behind much of today’s contemporary art and made me appreciate the ideas within the work and realise the artist’s intentions. Now when going to galleries, there is still a lot of contemporary artworks that visually do not appeal to me, however that is just subjective and I no longer dismiss this art, I seek out the concept and have a wider knowledge and more educated position to do so. Also, I appreciate artworks incorporating ready made objects much more now, I have learnt that found objects have a history, a connection within them which has benefited my artistic thinking and practice. Having to chose a contemporary artwork and write a short essay about it applying the ideas from the option was definitely beneficial to me, only having a small amount of words to cram a lot of information into encouraged me to summarise and be selective of source material, which is definitely a crucial skill to acquire in preparation of writing my dissertation.

When beginning the Dissertation process, I felt very overwhelmed and slightly anxious at the thought of writing a successful 10,000 word document. The lectures explaining the dissertation were relatively helpful in stating what had to be done, but the lecture I attended explaining the literature review, I felt more confused me than helped. Having now written my literature review, I don’t think the content of this lecture very clearly outlined what had to be done and consequently I have clarified the task with my dissertation tutor on numerous occasions. Since then, it has been very useful having tutorials where I have been able to ask any questions I still had after the lectures and to talk through my ideas. My initial Idea has developed since handing in the pre-proposal form and my tutor as helped point me in the right direction and give me advice on my progress. It was very useful to be advised to focus my question more and not be too vague in my research. This feedback encouraged me to really consider many angles that cross over into the relationship between art and nature and discover why I felt it to be important and what was important enough to base my dissertation on.

I am exploring a connection between art and nature and the way the two can interlink in my subject work and so my dissertation research has been highly beneficial to my practice. I enjoy writing and learning through research and constellation has given me the chance to improve and utilise these skills. I am currently interested in the connection between art and nature and I wanted to find an angle within this topic that would be interesting and important enough to warrant writing a dissertation on. In today’s technologically advancing urban society, I think a re-connection with nature is important and want to examine the role that art has to play in this re-connection. I also want to investigate the effect art has on nature and the environment. As soon as I found a subject of interest that is significant and important rather than just a broad area, I started to piece together different ideas and bits of research and enjoyed writing my literature review. It opened my eyes to new ways of thinking about my ideas and gave me new angles to approach my question from. Now that I have completed my Dissertation Proposal, I am more confident about the prospect of writing my dissertation

Overall, I think Constellation this year has been a crucial part of my Second year at Degree level. I have learnt a lot about contemporary artworks and written a successful essay discussing the theories concerned. In terms of my Dissertation journey, I do not think the lecture covering the literature review was very beneficial at all and I would encourage it to be made a little simpler for next years students. Also, the lecture that aimed to show students how to use the Library and the Summon Database should be optional as I sat there for an hour and learnt nothing I didn’t already know. If you haven’t used the library this far into the degree program, in my eyes there is something wrong and so an optional lecture would be more beneficial as it would focus on only those who needed it. At this moment in time, I am both excited and daunted at the prospect of writing my dissertation but I am sure that once all my research is done, notes are made and I start attempting to write a first draft, I will produce a successful piece of writing demonstrating the best of my ability that I can be proud of.


REFLECTION: Drawing as Experience

I chose to undertake the drawing as experience field module because I felt quite distanced from the practice of drawing and thought that this module may introduce me to new ways of drawing and new techniques to apply to my practice and reinthuse my interest. This module has not disappointed, it has pushed the boundaries of what I previously considered to be drawing and equipped me with new tools and techniques to document not just the things I see but my experience of the world as a whole.

From this module, I have also learnt that drawing can be used to give someone an experience and provide someone with a visual insight into an experience you are trying to portray. Drawing does not have to be about documenting something exactly, it can be more representational. I found the concepts and ideas within this course a little difficult to grasp at first, but once I got used to the idea of creating marks to represent sensory experiences, I started to understand drawing as a much more vital part of an artistic individuals life than I ever realised.

Being introduced to sensory stories and learning that visual stimulation can aid so many people’s understanding really inspired me to focus on working on creating marks that universally could be recognised to portray a variety of experiences. Having to represent smells, tastes, sounds and touch using pen and paper was incredibly challenging but really made me aware of my own senses and forced me to deeply concentrate on thinking about how I would represent my experience. I definitely think that the more practice I had from undertaking the various sessions within this module, the better I became at making sensory drawings that people could recognise and relate to. I gained experience of being at the receiving end of responding and understanding other people’s drawings when I was asked to participate in a performance responding to the drawings of my peers in the drama drawing workshop which really boosted my confidence in the power of drawing and in drama. The musicality of drawing session also gave me an insight into how you can respond to the surroundings, the only difference being that I was tasked with responding to the senses and experiences through drawing in order to give someone else an experience rather than through music. Drawing in the dark environment of the Opera unable to see the paper forced me not to think about the outcome and only to focus on documenting my experience.

Both the materiality of drawing and the psychogeography workshops were the most beneficial, influential and interesting to me. In the psychogeography session, I almost mapped the pathways that I walked, physically documenting my journey on paper. This encouraged me to think about the versatility of ways that you could document your experience of being in a landscape or environment which could be a useful skill to tie into my subject work. The materiality of drawing workshop encouraged me to work with a variety of materials and to utilise every day items to make marks and draw with. The use of unconventional drawing tools made me consider the fact that the object you use to draw with and the connatations of that item are embedded in the drawing. I am keen to link this into my subject work by making my own drawing tools from natural materials. There was something very satisfying about making my own drawing tools and I feel that drawing a place with tools made from objects from it makes the connection to place and nature even stronger.

I have learnt so many skills throughout the course of this module and I feel I have been building my own visual language step by step whilst trying to decipher how to use that language to convey a certain experience. I have realised a much deeper importance in drawing and no doubt will be integrating it into my practice in a variety of ways.

The materiality of drawing session is definitely going to influence my subject work. I am really inspired to make my owl tools to paint with and with a theme of art and nature running through my subject I want to use natural materials to make tools from connecting my art to the natural world more deeply. This is something I would not have experimented with if It wasn’t for undertaking this field module.


REFLECTION: Painting Performance

I decided to undertake the painting performance module to push the boundaries of my practice and explore new ways of creating artwork. I was a little nervous about what to expect but eager to get stuck in to the challenges that were to be presented to me. I learnt to utilise my own body as a tool for painting and push the limits of ways that I could apply paint and discover what marks could be made.

In my subject work, I find it difficult not to think about the outcome and to be free in my approach to producing art because I get quite stressed about doing well and so worry that if I loosen up a little the outcome may not be as successful. This module has taught me that being less controlled in my approach to creating artwork is a positive attribute and can also lead to successful outcomes. I have learnt that exploring the possibilities of art making is highly important and that actually an artist’s experimentation can be more of a success that a final culmination of that experimentation.

The first session of practical painting performance work that I undertook was inspired by the work of Yves Klein. I was determined to explore the possibilities of making marks with my body and really move the paint around in inivative ways. The exercise where I was encouraged to paint using a brush and use my left hand to make marks made me consider the role of a paintbrush and to what extent it controls me. I felt much closer to the artwork applying the paint with my body and realised that using a paintbrush or artistic tool to apply paint actually somewhat removes the artist from the work.

I had the opportunity to work from an aerial perspective by dropping paint from a scaffolding block. This removed any control I may have wanted to have on where the paint landed on the paper and forced me to create a completely free piece. I learned to remove any preconceptions of what my outcomes may look like and to be surprised by the marks the paint created and the marbling of colours that occurred when one ran into another for example. Working with amplified sound made me consider the possibilities of combining sound and painting.

Collaboration and working with artists from different disciplines was a crucial part of this module and taught me vital skills about working with others which will undoubtedly benefit me indefinitely. Collaborating and feeding off the ideas for others encouraged me to think outside the box and to learn from the ideas of others. Paint performance is a highly enjoyable practice and not only did I gain personal confidence but I learnt that the process of creating an artwork can actually be more interesting than the final outcome. I learnt to appreciate the process of art making. The Process that has been undertaken to create a piece of art is worth knowing as it can change your view of an artwork. Documentation was a crucial part of my experience on this module. I didn’t feel that the outcomes created would give the viewer an idea of how they were produced and so videoing the process allowed for that.

One of the sessions encouraged me to experiment with my choice of materials and push the boundaries of what can be used to make marks in art. I learned that you don’t have to stick to conventional art materials to make art and that sometimes it is more appropriate to use materials not typically associated with art to convey a certain message or image. This I feel may be relevant to my subject work. I am more confident in experimentation now and want to explore my materials and not just stick to working with tubes of premade paint in my subject work. I have just started experimenting with creating a connection between art and nature in my work and this field option gave me a chance to incorporate natural materials into my final piece and mix natural materials into paint etc. this is something that will influence and further my subject work.


Reflection: What am I doing? Why am I doing it? Progressions?

Reflecting on what I have done so far and writing down my ideas and progressions in concrete will not only help me progress but make the work I have been doing clearer to me and to others.

Within this project, I have decided to make work inspired by a piece by John Piper called the Rocky Valley.  Initially, I was very interested in the textures and the colour palette of the work. On closer investigation, the abstract marks that were making up the rock face became a key inspiration to the beginning of my project. Firstly, I have experimented with creating my own work inspired by the visual aspects of the piece, creating continuous line drawings with abstract shapes and gestural mark making and painting those elements onto photographs etc. Other influential artists like Dryden Goodwin and David Hockney encouraged me to create Landscapes with abstract shapes and elements through methods like scratching into photographs and digital work.

After exhausting the physical and visual influences, I decided to research into the concepts and reasoning of John Piper’s work. I found that he wanted to capture a sense of the place he was producing and express the personality of the nature within it and around him. He wanted his work to have a strong connection with the visual elements of the place as well as the feelings and emotions within it. I have chosen to work with my home area of the Brecon Beacons because it is a place close to my heart and I believe I will be able to capture it appropriately because I have experienced it first hand. I attempted to make some I-Pad collages combining real pictures of the place with levels of abstraction and marks. I also incorporated the colour palette and because the place was in it, I felt there would be a connection to it, but it was not strong enough.

Capturing a sense of a place has become a key concept of my work. I have been taking things from the outdoors and using them within my artwork, instantly creating a connection. At first, I was incredibly unsure where I was going with this and so started drawing with twigs dipped in ink and making line drawings from the nature within a place. I have also been experimenting with collage, textures and abstraction. Again, the connection was quite obvious and not very exciting and after seeing Anselm Kiefer’s exhibition in the Royal Academy in London, I started thinking about other ways of incorporating nature into my work.

Currently, I am experimenting with adding nature itself into the paint that I work with. I have produced experiments where I have mixed organic materials like soil or leaves into the medium and I am incredibly happy with the results. Not only does it add texture to the paint, but it gives a sense of the place you are painting, because nature from it is in the work as well. Combining the influence of John Piper and Anselm Kiefer seems to be giving my work a lot of direction and I am excited by the Ideas that are emerging.

In terms of progression, I am hoping to produce more experiments adding things to paint and using them to create abstracted Landscapes incorporating abstract shape and encompassing gestural mark making. I think combining everything that I have learnt from investigating and researching so far could lead to a successful outcome and then I could stand back and look at it and see how to progress further. Incorporating nature and organic matter actually into the art that I produce takes the connection to a landscape further than the work of John Piper. I have started to think about other ways of documenting a place and have created a few abstract pieces from collected found objects from the outdoors but this is something I will have to investigate further also.


CONSTELLATION: PDP: Reflecting on Level 4, Starting Level 5

Reflecting on my constellation experience at level 4, I felt my ability to understand complex information improved. Working out a summary of what I feel an academic text is trying to say, has been a beneficial tool for me. During Cath’s option, I was taught to decipher imagery and work out possible arguments/ meanings that could be going on. Combining this with library research, really helped my academic writing and in depth analysis improve. I was very pleased with my grase but to improve on last year: I feel I need to make sure that I give more detailed reasoning for points I make in a piece of writing, rather than just stating the point. I think I could also work on making my writing more to the point,I tend to babble a little and always seem to go over the word count limit and end up cutting words out. I look forward to this academic year and the new challenges that my next constellation option in level 5 will present and I will be taking on what I have learnt throughout level 4 to face these challenges.