To be able to write is to be able to dream, and a dream is the doorway to ones own mind.

Tuesday, 24 May 2011

All about Me.

Even though i have this blog i dont believe ive ever stated what i actually do nor want to do.

My long term aim is to become an art teacher myself however i have a bit of a journey before i get there. I love to paint and draw which i guess some will say puts me in the fine art category but il try anything which interests me. Im studying at southgate college doing a foundation in creative arts degree rather then a fine arts degree as i wanted to learn other skills which the university couldnt give me. I love to paint or draw anything from everyday objects to things a little stranger which i believe my work shows. I am lucky enough to have had a few commisions for pieces where ive painted portraits, landscapes, funny cartoons and even large scale wall paintings which included forest scenery. I also like to illustrate poetry and stories and have a few commisions from this to. At the moment im not sure of my own unique style as im having to bend a bit to keep on getting commisions but i want to learn as many techniques as possible.

My "logo"

I wrote my signature on to a piece of paper and scanned it into the computer then opened it in photoshop.
I changed the hue of the scan into a light blue so that I could see the lines of the pen tool easily. I went over the lines with the pen tool using bevier curves.

When I had finished going over the signature with the pen tool, I used the stroke function. This picture is the stroke function without simulate pressure ticked

This is the version of the logo where I checked 'simulate pressure' in the stroke option of the pen tool

I placed both versions of my logo into adobe illustrator and made a live trace of it in the option sub menu. From there, I chose a font which I thought would contrast with the style of my signature.
I chose to use my signature as i felt that was the most natural route for my logo for its what i sign all my with and will continue to do so. Therefore i felt like a specially designed logo wasnt practical or ideal to use on paintings or drawings and i have already used my signature to sign work so i felt it was best to stick with it.

(I would also like to add a thank you to Jessica Palmer for her help using photoshop)

safe/excite religious pieces of inspiration.

William Holman piece the shadow of death.
The Shadow of Death is a religious painting by William Holman Hunt on which he worked from 1870 to 1873, after his second trip to the Holy Land It depicts Jesus as a young man prior to his ministry, working as a carpenter. He is shown stretching his arms after sawing wood. The shadow of his outstretched arms falls on a wooden spar on which carpentry tools hang, creating a "shadow of death" prefiguring the crucifixtion His mother Mary is depicted from behind, gazing up at the shadow, having been looking into a box in which she has kept the gifts given by the Magi.


Expressionism is a movement which originally started in Germany at the start of the twentyth century. Expressionists aim to use artistic techniques to portray the true brutality in the world. Their paintings are created to evoke emotion and thoughts within the onlooker.

Kathe Kollwitz.
Kathe Kollwitz overall artistic ability’s has always impressed me, as has her empathy for humanity which is shown brilliantly through her expressionist images. Kollwitz techniques and mediums alternate depending on the theme and feeling which she is aiming to create however they are just as effective in doing so. Her work was greatly influenced by current exterior events, due to this her work is timeless.  Kathe Kollwitz work was inspired by events she saw happening in the world around her. The main theme in her work is overall humanity and ironically the suffering which takes place within the world due to this. For example wars causing suffering due to individuals animalistic instincts to survive at any cost.

Otto Dix
Dix was a German painter and engraver who mixed compassion and Expressionist despair to create works harshly critical of society.

safe and excite

So I think I finally know the direction my work is heading in although the actuall piece is still very far from being even a thought in my mind- the gap is closing in though. Firstly I want to look at Hysteria.

Hysteria (Definition taken from
an uncontrollable outburst of emotion or fear, often characterized by irrationality, laughter, weeping, etc.
Psychoanalysis . a psychoneurotic disorder characterized by violent emotional outbreaks, disturbances of sensory and motor functions, and various abnormal effects due to autosuggestion.

Hysteria although defined medically as a psychoneurotic disorder can effect more then just the individual thats called mass hysteria which is when a group of people think the same way regarding an issue and this produces fear which can get out of control as each member is feeding of anothers fear. An example of this is Doomsday preachers, how many people have heard of the 2012 doomsday? Riots are also produced by fear.

Hillsborough disaster

 The Hillborough disaster happened on the 15th of April 1989 at Hillsborough football stadium. 96 people were killed and 766 were injured all of which were fans of Liverpool F.C, its gone down in history as the deadliest stadium related disaster in British history and even one of the worst international football accidents.

Tuesday, 17 May 2011

New Project proposal. Design in Context.

Proposal (Again)

Design in context- Proposal.
After visiting the Woodcroft Wildlife area I could see many opportunities for development and even a sector where I myself could help with. I did some research online and contacted one of the volunteers regarding children’s educational opportunities, more specifically I asked if there was any leaflets/booklets given to children or school to promote the Woodlands and also to teach and there isn’t. I feel that one of the important aspects missing from Woodcroft is the potential to educate and inform children in the form of leaflets.  Also, Observational drawings could be used to highlight the features of the wild space and in doing so capture people’s attention. I think that the information given to children needs to be eye catching as well as informative. I will find inspiration for this piece from the area itself but also from other areas which are similar to this. For example, the Wildfowl and Wetlands trust who’s aim is similar to that of Woodcroft. I will make observational drawings from wildlife and also drawings from research to be used in the woodcraft area but also in the children’s leaflet as a visual reference point. For example, the booklet might contain information about butterflies and the same image used for illustration purposes will also be used in an area where the butterflies gather the most. This will enable children and even adults to have a visual link between the information provided but also the actual creature, enhancing the learning prospects.
I would like to use as many natural resources as possible and therefore I will be painting, drawing using pyrography on a wooden base. The wood and imagery would need to be protected by varnish to stop damage from the rain.  The leaflet will be made with card and the use of computer applications like Photoshop. The end product I hope to achieve will be a series of 6 images which will be transferred onto the leaflet.  I hope to have made an improvement to Woodcraft Wildlife area by proving an educational source for children but also a visual one too which I hope will encourage people to look for the animals or creatures conveyed and therefore further stimulating their interest within Woodcroft.

Damien Hirst- Again

popular in the 1990s.
Came to fame with his joint exhibition called Freeze.
One of his most famous pieces is "The Physical Impossibility of Death in the
Mind of Someone Living" which was a tiger shirk preserved in formaldehyde.
Hirst is reportedly the richest British Artist.
Hirst creates instillations which focus on the main aspects of life which are questioned by most people if not all. These are; creation, suffering and ultimately death. Damien Hirst produced work which also questions it however not on a global scale, he questions the individuals knowledge of ones own thoughts and the concepts in which we all know and believe in. Death is a main theme in his work but so is life, as it seems impossible to relate to death without having a knowledge of what life truly is.
It goes without saying that Hirsts pieces are not eco friendly. But they do question the world around us and our thoughts relating to it. I really like Hirsts work as it has intellectual depth to it and I do feel that I can personally connect to some of his pieces. Whether or not you like his work when confronted by it you stop and ask yourself what its about and that's something a lot of artist hope to achieve, including myself. Hirst is an extremely talented business man too and that largely is to thank for his success

Damien Hirst.

"I think art is good at looking back and looking forward. I don't think art is good at looking head-on. At the end of the day, people are more important than paintings."

Damien Hirst is an English Artist who was born on the 7th of June in 1965 in Bristol. He specialises in instillation, painting and conceptual art, he is also an art collector and entrepreneur. Hirst took a foundation course at Leeds School of Art and in 1986 he was accepted into Goldsmith College to complete a BA course in Fine Art which he graduated from in 1989. Damien's First acknowledged exhibition called "Freeze" was whist he was attending Goldsmith university, he organised and promoted this event and displayed work along with 16 other students.


Most famous member of Young British Artists (YBA's) who were at their most

Monday, 16 May 2011

Andy Goldsworthy-again.

Andy Goldsworthy.
"My art is an attempt to reach beyond the surface appearance. I want to see growth in wood, time in stone, nature in a city, and I do not mean its parks but a deeper understanding that a city is nature too-the ground upon which it is built, the stone with which it is made."- Andy Goldsworthy.

Andy Goldsworthy is a British Environmentalist, Photographer and Sculptor. He was born on the 26th of July in 1956 in Cheshire and he is currently working and living in Scotland. Goldsworthy is originally from England and when he was younger he worked on a farm as a labourer, he believes that this is where his love for nature was primarily formed. From this he went on to study Fine Art at Bradford College of Art (1974-1975) and at Preston Polytechnic (1975-1978) where he received his Bachelor of Arts degree. Once he had finished college Goldsworthy spent time in Yorkshire, Lancashire and Cumbria and then he moved to Langholm, Galloway , Dumfriesshire and Scotland and then a year after he moved to Penpont. Goldsworthy has said that he didn’t have much control over the move north and that it was opportunities knocking with money alongside which led him there. In 1982 he settled in Penpont and begin to work  with the land around him, aswell as creating pieces in England hes also made pieces in more exotic places like the North pole.

  Andy Goldsworthy works within the limits of nature, however by doing this he creates limitless pieces. His materials include flowers, stones, bricks, mud, snow and many more. 

 "I think it's incredibly brave to be working with flowers and leaves and petals. But I have to: I can't edit the materials I work with. My remit is to work with nature as a whole."- Andy goldsworthy.

 His pieces use natural materials and this creates boundaries, Goldsworthy makes a point of not manipulating the materials, he chooses to keep them in their found physical state and then organises them to create pieces of art work.

Goldsworthy uses his own bare hands or any found tools to create most of his pieces. On rare occasion for bigger and more permanent pieces he has to use machinery but he likes to keep this to a bare minimum. He feels that by using his hands to creates pieces it gives him a better chance to be intimite with nature and will enable him to understand nature fully. Goldsworthy also likes to produce photography relating to his pieces he has said :

"Each work grows, stays, decays – integral parts of a cycle which the photograph shows at its heights, marking the moment when the work is most alive.”

In relation to this it’s important for him to create pieceswhich will eventually decay but it’s also important for him to take images of these pieces as a personal memoir and a piece of art which can withstand nature longer then the original pieces.  Goldsworthy doesnt like to change natures original state and his work is designed to carry on its own lifecycle and evolve naturally which alternatively keeps creating different pieces of art by its self as time goes on.

"I take the opportunities each day offers: if it is snowing, I work with snow, at leaf-fall it will be with leaves; a blown-over tree becomes a source of twigs and branches. I stop at a place or pick up a material because I feel that there is something to be discovered. Here is where I can learn."

Goldsworthy inspires me as he is an opportunist. Goldsworthy doesnt wait for someone to ask him to create piece, or give him direction he goes out everyday walking the earth him looking for his own opportunitys. I feel that this is something which we can learn from and as artists we should be grabing the same chances as he does. His work inspires me through his talent of making every day found objects into a piece of Art, he uses his talent to show natures beauty but also its decay and sheer brut. I like the honestly of Goldsworthy’s pieces that what you see is what you get and he stays true to this throughout his work. Goldsworthy shows that anything can be art if you just give it a chance.

Saturday, 14 May 2011

Robert Bradford

Robert Bradford.
"i see myself bit like a mad scientist trying to create life/bring things to life."

Robert Bradford was born in London and currently resides in Cornwall where he has been for the last 7 years. He is widely known as being Sculptor however he originally studied Painting at Ravensbourne College Of Art and later studied Film making at The Royal College Of Art. Robert Bradford currently mainly focuses on creating pieces of art with the mass use of recycled toys to create a much bigger piece as the image below shows:
Robert Bradford wanted to be an Artist ever since he was a little boy but after finishing college he found it hard to depend on sales of his art work to get him through the financial commitments life brings, due to this he started work as a mental health worker for several years which allowed him to carry on with his then chosen medium of paint with the occasional video or photography piece. Throughout this he frequently exhibited his work in Great Britain the locations of exhibition included the I.C.A, Richard Demarco Galleries in Edinburgh and the Arnolfini at Bristol. Once Bradfords work had gained commercial success he started lecturing at various college and universities including the Maidstone College Of Art where he was offered a lectureship at San Diego State University in California U.S.A. He chose to stay and work there for five years and gained exhibitions at the San Diego Museum of Art, Bernard Jacobson Gallery and Stella Polaris Gallery.
He also soldpieces to private and public collectors. 

Once back in England Bradford persued his interest in Mental Health once again and trained and practiced as a psychotherapist in a part time job in London and Bristol. He chose to work part time as he wanted to focus the rest of his time on building up his sculpture portfolio where he chose to do pieces for public art. This is when he started his fire sculptors which include Over 40 pieces some were left as pieces others were set alight to create a moving piece of work.
Robert Bradford moved to Cornwall in 2001 and carried on creating these interative pieces where he become increasingly known for his annual Beast Burnings on Bodmin Moor.
The idea for Bradfords fire work steam from his work as a psychotherapist where he found his love for theraputic pieces and experimentation with matter.
In 2004 Robert started to experiment with mediums used to create his sculptors  where he found his love of plastic toys  and adapted them for use as his main material.

These pieces are what he is most known for internationally and also what I find most appealing about this artists work., They are his Plastic Series. The inspiration for these pieces came from his wanting of something a bit more exciting and meaningfull- something with a history.  The plastic pieces originally came from Bradfords  own toys that were put away in storage when he was a little boy. He started to experiment with ways of putting them together to create a bigger construction  for a large sculpture. After trial and error he found that simply placing a screw to hold the pieces together was the best method (this wasn’t tried originally as it was believed pieces would crack) ,the base is made from wood. The toys are used as the building blocks for the creation but they also work on another level, Bradford likes the idea that the toys individually are creations from unknown designers and that by putting them together he creates a bigger pieces which enhances the toys individually as well as using them solely as material. The toys also show times and movements in history where certain toys were fashionable like Barbie dolls, toy guns and Lego bricks.
       Even though Bradfords pieces include old toys and ultimately is economical this isnt something which Bradford has designed his work around its coincidence that the material of his choice is creating sustainable pieces. Bradford protects his pieces by the copy right law which stops anyone from claiming his pieces as their own, however, this doesnt cover Bradford if copies are made from his work including the style of which its done and the  method its achieved which many other artists do protect themselves against.

Here is what Robert Bradford said during an interview :

"It is my intention to make an art that is communicative but I have no
message to send. There are some paradoxes. I am too lazy and too driven to
give very much time to recycling, but I also dislike waste"

Robert Bradford inspires me in more then one way firstly, i respect his work ethic the fact that he trained to be a pychotherapist aswell as continuing to persue his love of art shows his dedication and down to earth nature. Secondly, Bradfords style of work isnt usually something which i like but i do like the way its created.  Its appeal of course is the eye catching quailities it has: Its difficult not to be impressed by his work. The simple yet imagitve idea of taking an object and turning it into another object- even a piece of art work is what has appealed to me here, the toys get lost within the piece and provide a colourfull outcome. It also creates a moment where you can stand back and say " i had one of those" and that can unite people as most of us have played with toys at one part of our lifetime and the sculptors themselves are made from parts of peoples history. Thirdly, i like how he changes his materials to suit whichever series of work he is creating this is something which i need to apply to my work as i mainly only work with paint. I have seen through bradfords work that you can stick to what you like, but what you like changes if you give yourself the chance to evolve therefore creating and developing bigger and better pieces each time. This is something i shall be thinking about for the future.

Antony Gormley-Again.

Antony Gormley

"We are all conscious in this globalized world that in some way human beings are affecting natural systems that have never been affected by one species.. We have the ability to foul the nest for ourselves and every other species, or do something about it."                        
Angel of the North
Antony Gormley (birth date 30 August 1950) is an English sculptor who shot to fame with his Angel of the North piece which is situated in Gateshead. From 1971- 1974 Gormley travelled to India and Sri Lanka to learn about Buddhist beliefs where he studied Buddhist Vipassana meditation, which is an ancient technique of meditation that focuses on the relationship between the mind and body- it enables one to be able to heal and self transform. His interest in religion and philosophy have greatly impacted his work. After that he went on to study at Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design, Goldsmiths university in London and then completed a postgraduate course in sculpture at the Slade School of Art which finished in 1979. Gormleys first solo exhibition came  in 1981 at the Whitechapel Art Gallery from support by Nicholas Serota who’s an art critic and was the director of the Whitechapel Art Gallery at the time. Gormley presented a series of body moulds which were created from metal casts.  In 1994 Gormley won the Turner Prize with Field for the British Isles which is a piece that’s made up of around 35,000 individual figures installed in a room. It took roughly 60 brickmakers to help Gormley complete the piece. Gormleys other famous pieces include Asian Field which was an installation of 180,00 little clay figures, The waste Man and Event Horrizon.                                                                                                           

Asian Field

Antony Gormley’s work primarily focuses on the human form using his own body as a mould for his creations. His pieces forget the details within the human form and just uses its mass as a mould. Gormley purposely excludes the details as he’s more concerned with the person as a whole an exterior and interior mass and a source of memory and development very much like a machine itself, he sees the body as an area a place to live in rather than a human being. He questions and explores this idea throughout his work. Gormley states that his work is “an attempt to materialise the place at the other side of appearance where we all live."                

 Gormley's only main criticism has been that others have helped him create his pieces. This even led to some people stealing some of his figurines from The field exhibition as they felt that it wasnt fair. Gormley however has always credited those who help him and thank them for their support its also said that they are paid very well. Gormley protects his work by contracts between himself and the task forces, he always asks for volunteers to help create mass piece whom sign over any rights they have. Gormley needs help with some of pieces he creates as he makes them on such a huge scale that for technical engineering problems there needs to be an expert and for pieces that use many figurines it takes alot quiker to achieve with more man power. Gormley however designs all the pieces himself and is always around to watch over his helpers.

Antony Gormley work has been noted as being eco friendly, he isnt perfect but he does try. When he can he uses materials which are found or can be reycled. Alot of his mass pieces are made from clay which is a sustainable material. Gormleys most famous ecological piece was his Trafalger Square 4th plynth idea. This consisted of getting members of the public writting to Gormley saying why they should be chosen to stand on the Plynth for an hour as an act of art. Eventually they were chosen and for 100 days every hour someone new stood upon it. He saw this as a chance to be able to show the world what london and its people are like. as the piece didnt use any materials except our own bodies it was completely environmentally friendly.  Below is a video which relates to this.
           What i like the most about Gormleys work is why he creates it. He feels a need to explore the outside world by looking at its confinments, seeing the body as not a human being but a home for our soul. He looks for inspiration and ideas outer the box by literally confining himself to one. The placement of his pieces are also very important for him, he is a land artist, i respect that he does travel to look for the right spot for pieces and inspiration rather then just put them in a gallery where the full potention isnt met. This shows me that we have to keep looking around us for ideas and potentials and not to settle for something because its easier or brings in the most money. I really respect Gormley for his work ethic.