Week five of semester two of year one - four days of classes this week.
Monday Morning – Printmaking
Both of the plates I have etched were painted with ground again and the one of E at his easel painting received more texture in lines but the ground on the six kitties was too dark to see to add more lines. Today, the teacher helped me with using aquatint. Because there is only one respirator – the teacher was the one to dust the plates with the rosin used to create the aquatint. M. also wanted an aquatint so we two stood in the door of the room where the powdered rosin was shaken onto the plates and watched.
The next step was to put the plates, now covered with rosin on a heated surface to melt the rosin. It turns dark and transparent when heated. Next, the parts of the plate that you do not want to have affected by the rosin are painted over with ground. The plate goes into an acid bath for very specific period of time depending upon how dark you want the tint to be. It can be as short as 30 seconds. For the plate with E. at the easel, I had three areas targeted to be tinted, one at 30 seconds, the next at one minute and the next and a minute and a half. Through this process I determined that I did not want to use aqua tint on the other plate after all but instead, repainted all of the plate with ground and will add more lines to create more texture for the print. All of the above was accomplished in class but there was no time left to print – that will have to wait until after spring break.
Also after the break, I plan to continue making note cards using the two screen prints I created of my darling PeepEye.
Monday Afternoon – Ceramics
In ceramics I was fortunate to have the feedback I needed to proceed further with my coil project. I spent the entire period continuing to shape the piece by adding and smoothing clay to bring the piece closer to the small model I created in the very first class. I planned to stay on to work on the piece in studio time but the room was very crowded and noisy so I ended up wrapping up my piece once more to complete after the break.
Meanwhile, I showed my sketch of my design for the slab project to the teacher and got approval to go ahead with a model. I will next create the model in cardboard and then in clay before going to the piece I plan to submit at the end of the month.
The three books I ordered from the library to do the needed research on the cubist/constructivist period have arrived.
- Picture this century: an introduction to twentieth-century art by Felicity Woolf
- Primitivism, cubism, abstraction: the early twentieth century by Harrison, Frascina and Perry
- The popular culture of modern art: Picasso, Duchamp, and avant-gardism by Jeffrey Weiss
On hold but not yet arrived is a video recording - New ways of seeing: Picasso, Braque, and the cubist revolution
Tuesday – Design
In design class we had two activities that we worked on throughout the period. The first was a worksheet on which were numerous shapes/forms and we shaded them according to the directions given for the light source that fell on them.
The second activity involved eggs and onions. We arranged one of each and drew them using shading to give them dimension. These exercises were completed and handed in at the end of class.
Wednesday – Drawing Fundamentals
The goal in this class (and there were only 8 of us attending due to the latest snowstorm) was to learn about perspective in drawing. First we were shown Isometric drawing as is often used by decorators to get a sense of walls and floors. The lines in isometric drawings are parallel but do not take into account true perspective.
The rules for drawing were developed in the 15th Century. The horizon line is an imaginary line where sky meets earth and/or sea. Along this line, one places vanishing points and it is to these points that lines are drawn. We were shown how to draw the vertical line of a box representing the edge of the box nearest the viewer – it is the corner line coming towards you. You put a pencil across the bridge of your nose to find the location of the horizon line for your drawing.
Using vanishing points along a horizontal line, we created cubes. Then we shaded a cube according to the light source. Next we looked at a chair set up on the platform and first drew the rectangular box that defined the chair and using perspective, established vanishing points to use to draw the chair within that shape.
We next learned that with any shape that is circular, to draw the center line first. Then establish the side lines of a cylinder, a cone or a sphere. We practiced drawing these shapes then shading them according to the light source on the objects. We were shown a tip about using circular motions of the pencil in shading.
Finally, we were given a handout. On the page are nine squares (three across and three down) and we are to shade from light to dark in those boxes using pencil or conte.
Thursday – Painting.
I received feedback on the arrangement of shapes I created in looking for a composition for my abstract painting. I have shapes in green yellow, orange and brown with outlines in black – the idea I got from the discussion we had on cloisonné – that harks back to stained glass windows. I took the suggestions given and began to block out the shapes on my canvas. I have the green yellow and orange sections painted so far.
This study has come a fair distance from the original inspiration.
1. Gourds - photo taken in Arizona 2. a pastel drawing of the gourds