Reflections on my Drawing 1 experience

26 April 2018

After months of contemplation I enrolled yesterday, 25 April 2018, for one course unit of the Fine Arts Honours degree at Open College of the Arts.  The degree is validated by the University for the Creative Arts (UCA) in the UK. My first task was to set up a new email account to be able to be in contact with tutors as well as student google groups.  I am so grateful for the opportunity to be a real student again – so much expectations with regards to my personal growth in my art studies as well as skills and thought processes during my creative learning journey.  I see myself doing paintings, drawings as well as printing to communicate with more ease and clarity during this learning process.  My need for learning is very much focussed on learning an (the) art language as I reflect and attempt to give expression in this creative space where I find myself.  I would like to see my development on a personal level with regards to self-doubt, confidence to communicate and consistency in method…..

I have made my introductions to my tutor, Dan Robinson, via email this afternoon and started reading through the Introduction materials.  I find it informative, especially around search engines, also used My Google Drive (great it is free and my Icloud is seriously clogged up) The part on research is great – I loved the Picasso notation: “I never made a painting as a work of art, its all research” – I can so relate to this.  I really need to use my blog as a reflective practice – I have always felt to exposed – but this is learning and I want to learn and grow! I need to reflect on my own work, by recording it, analysing it and also explore experimenting with my own ideas and work.  I realise I can use Pinterest more – I love to collect imagery that touches or inspires me – look at styles, techniques, materials used and simply enjoy this visual stimulation.  This is also part of considering and examining work of other artists.  Then; the Notecards also excites me – touchable, I can organise as I go along and learn – think this is more practical option for me due to fact that I can have a tangible process going.

I copied this part:

“Store the images you’ve collected in your log. Alongside your images note down basic information such as the title of the work, the author, the date, media, size, etc.

Continue by describing the work. Consider how its appearance (marks, lines, shape, tones, colours, textures, overall composition, etc.) helps to communicate its message or construct your impression of it. It may help to annotate the image or sketch simple diagrams alongside it.

Technically, what you’re doing here is analysing the formal visual language of an image. This is known as visual researchor, sometimes,visual analysis.

Next, progress from simply describing the image to analysing it and reflecting on what and how you feel the image communicates, and how well it achieves this. Why do you feel this image or artist is important to you? Don’t worry about ‘getting it wrong’ or ‘missing the point’.  Remember that in the arts there are no definitively right or wrong answers, just different opinions – some more authoritative than others.

Aim to collect at least two or three images each week. Practise your visual analysis and analytical and reflective writing and expand your understanding and use of visual language. There are plenty of books about analysing images; your course learning materials may also offer you examples of things to consider and how to approach this activity.”

I am so glad I started my blog in early March 2018 – loved the quote on the course:  “Tell everyone, some will listen”  At this stage uploading images is sometimes a problem, but since I can also use the WordPress app on my i phone or tablet it would be easier going – as it is always available, my laptop tends to stay in my work area, and I do not always back up all my images to my laptop.  Well Google Drive will be an added benefit.

I have also realised that another need of mine is to discuss my experience, struggles, questions with like minded people.  This has not been the easiest part of my development – in my group classes we are serious about working on our art and getting feedback from our tutor.  I get so much learning from seeing others at work, listening to their interests and motivations for doing art.      I do look forward to the group discussions and have started reading some of the blogs.  It seems like another layer of the world has been revealed to me – a place I love, where I can be myself and already feel so uplifted and motivated.