In the first hour, we were given the task of putting the final touches to our shaped paintings in preparation to informally exhibit what we have created within these sessions to our peers that have been working in other discipline sessions within fine art.
I am incredibly pleased with my shaped painting, so much so that I am thinking of presenting it as one of my final pieces. I think the green glow coming through the monochrome is quite eery and heightens the feeling of loneliness within the painting. I have spent a lot of time working on this and I feel it definitely shows, I was really excited to exhibit this piece along side the shaped paintings of the other members of my painting group.
It was really interesting to see how each of us had approached the task of creating a shaped painting very differently. All of the pieces had our own stamp on them and were painted in completely different techniques. Some people had completely covered the green underlay, some had let it show through as I have. It was fascinating to me that we had all been given the same brief and interpreted in very varied ways. I think presenting all our work as a mini exhibition was a great way of consolidating all that we have learnt the past weeks and the perfect opportunity for each one of us to take a step back and look at what we have achieved. I have really enjoyed attending these painting sessions on a monday and I have learnt a massive amount. I had never experimented with green underpainting or dry brushing or creating a shaped painting before and I have acquired valuable skills that will continue to influence my work and that will stay with me through the rest of my artistic life.
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 now finished the green under-painting I have been working on this week, ready to paint the shaped painting on Monday afternoon in the paint workshop.
I have linked my shaped painting into my Hidden loneliness project and painted all the people as white silhouettes apart from one, to show that the one person may as well be alone because there is no interaction with any of the other people around them, they may as well not exist. I feel this heightens loneliness, but this green under-painting has proved to me that colour is very important when portraying loneliness, because I would say this figure looks lonely than in the pieces I have painted in dark and sepia tones.
I am really pleased with the result, I focused on creating tone and highlights and shadows and I feel as if this is definitely evident and I am confident that this underlay with inform the final outcome greatly.
I have been working in the studio most evenings this week, painting my green under-painting ready for Monday’s workshop when we will start painting colour on top of it. I have been focusing on highlights and shadows and creating tone and dimension within this underlay. I find the colour mixing involved with this process really enjoyable, as you are only allowed to darken the green with red and blue and lighten it with yellow and white, and it is quite relaxing working on this in the studio.
I am also really happy with how the shape of the board I cut out is bringing the whole painting together. The castle turrets, I feel are particularly successful and I think I have managed to create a sense of depth and dimension within this under-painting.
Now that I have painted the tones, highlights and shadows into the under-painting, I will be confident when applying the next layer of paint. I am pleased with how it looks so far and will continue working on it until it is finished and ready for the next stage. I have learnt so much making this piece and it has been such a valuable experience and now that I have learnt more in the workshops, I can see a progression already from the last green under-painting to this one.
Today, in the Monday paint workshop I have been attending, we started thinking about creating a shaped painting. We looked at artists to influence our pieces and to gain an idea of what a shaped painting was and how it might look. We looked at the works of Anthony Green mainly, David Hockney and loosely touched upon the work of Patrick Hughes.
I was highly drawn to the work of Anthony Green. I find it highly interesting that he uses shaped paintings to play with perspectives. He inspired me to think about creating an irregular shaped piece rather than a generic one like a circle or oval. He inspired me to think of a scene to do with my city project and map out an interesting outline of how it looked to cut out of board to create the canvas for my shaped painting. His work is incredibly clever and really made me want to work with an irregular shaped painting as I wasn’t really able to visualize what I might achieve before.
David Hockney (Tea Painting)
We looked at David Hockney’s shaped painting – “Tea painting in an illusionist way” as an idea of a more geometric shaped piece. The picture employed a shaped canvas, the first work by a Royal College student in which the stretcher departed from the traditional rectangle. Hockney made the stretcher himself. His intention was that, if the blank canvas was already illusionistic, he ‘could ignore the concept of illusionistic space and paint merrily in a flat style – people were always talking about flatness in painting in those days’ (Stangos, p.64).
Patrick Hughes’ work looks simply rectangular but when you look at it from a side view, it is actually incredibly shaped and 3D, his work inspired me to think about creating a relief effect within a shaped painting and maybe building more shapes on top of a shaped piece to create dimension, this is something I could certainly look into in the future.
We started by drawing out the shapes that we had decided to cut and went down to the woodwork area to cut out the pieces using a band-saw. I decided to paint a city scene from Cardiff with a view to painting loneliness within it and silhouettes of figures. I chose St Mary’s street with the castle at the back as I felt the turrets would make for an interesting shaped painting to be cut out. Then, I just started cutting. I am very happy with the shape I created and look forward to painting it very much. I started priming the surface of the shape today also, ready to produce an underpainting on top.
I have never done this kind of thing before, and tend to always paint on rectangular or square shapes, so I feel I will be learning a lot when producing this work. I spent the evening in the studio, drawing out my piece ready to paint it. I am keen to get stuck in and start painting my shaped piece. I will be working in the studio this week creating a green underpainting just like I did when creating my still life piece ready for next monday’s session.