Monday, 30 April 2018

Printmaking - BAIL202

As part of this module I set myself a challenge to try something new. Not only do I plan to develop and build upon my existing practice and techniques, but I also find it as valuable to step outside of my comfort zone experiment with an entirely new process.

Therefore, I have chosen printmaking to enrich my learning and give myself plenty of opportunities to reflect on something unfamiliar. I have tried some versions of printmaking before, but that was years before I even started university, so my skills and preferences have dramatically changed since then. I wish to revisit these processes with a fresh outlook and new inspiration.

Given the time constraint, I will only have time to fully concentrate on one type of printmaking. In order to make a justified and well informed decision about which process to pursue, I have conducted some research:


Materials/Equipment: lino sheet, cutting tools, ink, paper, roll, cutting plate.
Effect: Block colours, fine detail is difficult to achieve, especially at a beginners level.

Intaglio/Dry-Point Etching

Materials/Equipment: Etching plate (can be a piece of copper, or perspex), etching tools (any sharp pointed utensil), ink, cheesecloth/tarlatan/scrim, absorbent paper.
Effect: Fine detail can easily be achieved. Delicate, fine lines rather than blocks of solid colour. 


Materials/Equipment: Anything! Any material which creates a relief/interesting texture can be glued to a board to create a print from. Ink, roller, paper and press.
Effect: More experimental. All sorts of outcomes can be achieved, but this may take some time to discover through trial and error.


Materials/Equipment: Wood block, specialist wood carving tools, ink, paper, press. 
Effect: Similar to lino. Bold and high contrast. No tonal values. Perhaps harder to work with than lino, due to the tougher material?

I chose the above selection of printmaking techniques to research, as I felt like they would all be accessible and easy to set up (given the time left for this module). After conducting this research, I have chosen to work with dry-point etching, given the high volume of detail that can be achieved, even at a beginners level.  I feel like the end aesthetic will compliment my existing work, as well as showcasing a new set of skills to enrich my portfolio.

Saturday, 21 April 2018

Inspirational Artists - BAIL202

Stage 2 of our new project has provided me an opportunity to work on a subject matter of my choice. I've decided to focus my illustrations around bears, and the environmental challenges each specie faces. To kick start my research, I have gathered a number of varying illustrators who I hope will inspire my idea development. 
 Jennifer A. Bell
Her fun tonal illustrations capture adventure and personality. Although primarily working in pencil, this particular piece is created using what appears to be acrylic or gouache. Bell's characters are beautifully stylised in a fun, lighthearted manner.

Manon Gauthier
I chose this illustrator purely based on her application, rather than her subject matter. I love her playful approach to shape and colour, which capture beautiful textures which help suggest varying surfaces and movements. 

Richard Smythe
This is another example of an illustrator who I've picked due to their application. Smythe's style is slightly more refined and detailed than Gauthier's, which is perhaps more of the direction that I want to go in. 

Christine Pym
Very characterised, but lovely cheerful illustrations which certainly appeal to a younger audience. Pym seems to have used a combination of watercolour and pencil, to achieve a flat layer of colour which she can work into. I particularly love the sense of scale she has been able to create in the above image. 

Chiaki Okada
Okada is perhaps one of my favourite illustrators that I have discovered recently. Not only are her images so beautiful, but the its the relationship between child and animal which I particularly enjoy. Her illustrations capture so much imagination, and they are drawn softly in pastels and pencils. The only downfall however, is that there isn't much information on her, and none of her books have been published into English (first editions are printed in Japanese, French and Spanish). Nevertheless, I feel like the illustrations speak for themselves, and it's not always necessary to have any accompanying text. 

Renata Liwska
I am really drawn to Liwska's soft colour palette and intricately drawn lines. Upon closer research I discovered that all of her illustrations are created only using a mechanical pencil, which is scanned in, and colour is applied underneath using the 'multiply' tool on Photoshop. This allows her to keep experimenting with colour, which is something that I'm willing to try myself. 

Laura Jayne Weeks
I discovered this particular illustration on Pinterest, and later found out that she too studied Illustration at Plymouth College of Art. I am particularly drawn to the use of pencil and block colour, which juxtaposes not only colour, but also surface texture. Perhaps this is something that I could experiment with during my development process.