After attending a tutorial on Monday, I was glad that the tutor gave me some direction and new ideas and techniques to work with. After looking at my work, she suggested that I work with Monochrome and use the tones of grey to enhance the feeling of loneliness and make the individual coloured figure appear even more singled out and alone.
She also felt that my work was not really gelling as a whole and that I was working with three different realities and had to express the relationship between the figures, the single figure and the architecture. She said she thought the detailed buildings that were included in my work detracted from the figures and from the message within the pieces. She suggested that I experiment with contrasting colours, monochrome and full colour as well as contrasting languages, the gestural and the more realistic. I was encouraged to make marks and shapes that represent the buildings and to make them more gestural rather than focusing on every detail, window or door etc. I have experimented with making less detailed marks to create the city landscape with both brush and palette knife.
I feel that working with a palette knife definitely helped me be less controlled and more gestural but doesn’t really gel with the figures painted with a brush and therefore is unsuccessful so I have experimented with more gestural brush work.
I think this is far more successful and the monochrome definitely heightens the feeling of loneliness and the colours of the lone figure. After producing this piece, I decided to experiment with how much of the surrounding is seen within the painting, because even though the technique is successful, I feel that the buildings still are overwhelming the figures here.
This definitely puts emphasis on the lone figure and draws the viewer to wonder why they are the only one not painted as a white silhouette and consider their loneliness rather than being distracted by the buildings in the piece. These are highly valid experiments and have inspired me to create a final piece working with monochrome rather than the sepia alternative I have worked with previously. I feel this colour palette and deeper contrast portrays a more negative vibe and adds to the feeling of loneliness within the work.
Today, I attended the paint workshop, where I started working on top of the Green underpainting that I have been working on this week. Prior to this workshop, I had a tutorial with one of our tutors – Susan Adams, who suggested that I worked in monochrome to highlight the one person that is in colour within my work. I think this is a great suggestion and I will experiment with this technique throughout the further stages of my project. In this session, based on the feedback I have been given, I decided to work with a monochrome layer on top of the Green underpainting, and I was interested to see how the green would shine through the greys.
I started to realise that I had already done a lot of the work by putting detail into the underpainting and that I could use it as a guide to work on top of. I focused on creating dimension and tone in the underlay and this definitely helped the success of the paint I was applying on top because I could follow the tones I have considered and thought out previously. I have employed dry brushing techniques here so that the glow of the green underlay is allowed to come through. I have been researching artists that use these techniques within their work and I came across the YouTube video’s of George Ayers, who incorporates much of the detail into a green underpainting and like me uses it more as a guide to work on top of.
I am really pleased with how this piece is turning out. Before these sessions, I never realised quite how useful an underpainting could be and how it really does inform the outcome. It is definitely something I will be condsidering a lot more in my future as an art student and an artist.
I will continue to work on this piece this week and finish it ready for next monday’s session where we will be exhibiting what we have created and presenting what we have learnt.
I have been experimenting with tracing paper within my hidden loneliness project. I wanted to highlight that when you are walking around the city, all the other people may as well not be there. I also thought about the fact that they are not important to you, they are just silhouettes passing you by that you may catch a glance with every now and then.
The existence of the other people around you is very transparent with not much significance or importance in your day. I thought the use of tracing paper highlighted this transparency. I started thinking about people being in a rush to do things or get to places in the city and how the world around them is foggy and muffled and not really taken note of. I experimented with placing tracing paper over my black and white photographs and drawing one person only in bold black fine line on top to highlight this observation.
I think these explorations are successful, they definitely convey an immediate feeling of loneliness and look artistically interesting. There is something highly charming about them. However, I’m not sure I will be incorporating the use of tracing paper into my art work or final pieces for this project. Experimenting with it has been valuable and made me consider more ideas and think about not noticing other people or the city around you when you are in a hurry. I may incorporate its use into the collaborative drawings I am working on in my field group.