Sunday, 29 March 2015

Who Am I?

Bit of a dark, egocentric, philosophical blog post title but throughout the past week I have been asking myself quite 'investigative' questions. Been feeling quite strange lately and I don't know if it's a good thing? Probably might be good, because I've been on a bit of a journey this week.

Earlier this week on Monday is the lecture that I have been most looking forward to, being on Children's Books. I have always been passionate about Children's Books since starting my foundation and I'm still very much into it now. 

Here were just some points I thought stood out:

  • Being in the children's book industry requires a lot of hard work, but the pay off afterwards will be worth it. 
  • There is a lot of competition within that area of illustration- regarding apps and games for the ipad, children's tv animations like Peppa Pig and so on. Being a collector of children's books myself, I know that there a lot of talented contemporary illustrators out there!
  • What might seem so simple, is actually quite the opposite! Having experienced making my book last year in foundation, there are a lot of components that go towards producing a book itself- narrative theory, child psychology, sequential narrative, and so on so forth. So much work goes into it. 
  • Some of the best children's books are simple and quite humorous, filled with surprises. With my book I might want to ask "how should I make my story exciting?", to make it a page turner for children.
  • If I really wanted to go into children's books, I'm gonna have to throw myself in it, immerse and surround myself in all aspects of this area and work hard.

After the lecture we had a zine exhibition/ fair in our illustration studio- showing the work we had produced in our last unit, Visual Thinking.

There was so much creativity in some people's work and I couldn't help but feel slightly intimidated. I know this is toxic, comparing myself to others but I could have been a bit more creative with my zine. However, I've learnt my lesson and of course I am going to forward and push myself, doing the best I can.

Feeling quite motivated when I got home, I made some sequential narratives based from my observational drawings from last week:

To clear my head a little bit I went to Coffee #1 and drew from observation (apologies if this all seems a bit 'dear diary' entry like), but I like being reflective and it is my blog after all. 

I have started to experiment with typography and I should probably do more of these when I create the text for my story. 

Somehow I forgot about the Smart Car brief that was given to us, embarrassingly I submitted some designs at the last minute, hence it feeling kinda rushed...

Life drawing on Wednesday! It was the last life drawing evening class of the year so I had no choice but to go- gonna miss drawing the human form! Some of these are out of proportion since the point of it is all about accuracy and measurement but I decided to just let loose!

Being inspired by Stephanie Black's lecture last week, I started hanging some pieces of my work around my room to help me gather my drawings visually.

There's a bit of a running theme in my work; I tend to draw female characters because I think they're easier to draw. And hair for some reason, exaggerating it way too much sometimes.

On that note, because of that I've decided to go with a male protagonist this time. It's challenging and different, but in a good way. With my last project being heavily surrounded by the theme of Feminism this is quite an understandable move. Ha, promoting gender equality!

Also got some feedback from the last assessment and some things pointed out were:
  • further consideration of pacing and developing a less literal message through your zine would have allowed for a more unique outcome. 
  • more exploration with text and imagery would have helped to refine the relationship between the two. 
  • Continue to experiment with analogue and digital techniques. 
These are the things I should consider and continue to develop within this unit as well to help move my practice forward. Working with both text and image is something that I have always been fascinated with so I will continue to explore the relationship, especially with my narrative. Although I love making hand-made work, I'm still not the most confident with digital, so more experimenting on Photoshop! 

This time last year I would have been doing my final major project in foundation and so I couldn't resist but look and reflect back on my old sketchbooks. Felt so weird going back. 
I loved the spontaneity of these sketches from dummy books and that itself got me motivated to draw quickly and loosely. I also thought about how I put so much pressure on myself to do so much work- I was constantly stressed. I still do put pressure on myself but not as much anymore.

The library is such a good place to find inspiration. I love Rebecca Cobb's work (shown above), and I really like how she produced these lovely loose marks. Can't tell what it is, watercolour or ink? Anywho, I should try similar experiments later on and surprise myself. 

There's also this plastic exhibition and museum in the library so I decided to check it out for some more inspiration. Could serve as inspiration for the props in my book? Some really lovely and beautiful items on display...

Found this really beautiful concertina, and again it could inspire the format and layout of my book...

I ordered The Dark as it relates heavily with my theme of anxiety. I like the relationship between the dark blacks and the light from the torch the character uses. So simple, yet so effective! Klassen always makes it looks easy, but it really isn't!

So it's Easter now and some family visited for a while. I asked my 8 year old cousin what type of books she reads and this is what she showed me:

I understand as that children get older they prefer books with more text and fewer pictures, like chapter books. 

Here are just some illustrated murals that have caught my eye as I was out and about.These really inspired me to consider the scale of my work, and how illustration can be applied in this context. In the future, if I have the chance, I would love to paint giant children's murals! Or any murals for that matter.

Really love the mark-making in this one!

Lately I have been questioning my creativity (I ask myself too many questions!). I have been monitoring and reflecting back on my work, seeing where I can improve. Over the next few weeks I want to challenge myself and see how creative I can be. I feel as though I need to do more things outside of my comfort zone for this to happen. 

I'm still on a bit of a tangent regarding what my character should be scared off as I keep changing my ideas but I will just keep on producing work and see what happens.  

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