Feedback from Part one

Overall Comments

The first part of the course focused on getting started, overall your response has been very good. The important thing at the beginning of the course is to experiment, make some handmade drawings, try out new materials and generally get out of your comfort zone which you have done.

I’m happy I made a good start. I honestly tried to push myself (maybe a little too much at times) with part one.

However, you are spending a lot of time on individual exercises, particularly ‘Getting the gist’ and the ‘Say hello’ assignment. The number of hours this first part of the course should take is 40 hours but you seem to have taken much longer. Try to stick to the letter of the exercises, as the extra areas you are covering (branding, market research, etc) will be covered later in the course. For now, the important thing is to be sketching, brainstorming, drawing and experimenting. Your sketchbook work is great, so let’s see more!

I am so glad this was said, I did spend a bit of time researching the topics while normally it could be a quick view and acknowledgment, I felt like I needed to PROVE I was doing this so I pretty much-documented everything. Also, the kids and I were unwell over the festive period so I ended up doing additional research (on this and many of the other up and coming exercises) so I actually have a lot of research done for the whole unit and now case doing the physical work.
As can see with my summery I knew I was getting a bit long-winded and this is one of the areas I want to streamline. Yes we will be seeing more sketchbook work very soon (it is filling up) quickly plus now also filling my personal sketchbook with doodles (I will also send this in with assessment due to this)

Exercise: The History of Illustration The first exercise explored how illustration has evolved over the last 50 years by identifying and exploring the differences between a range of illustrators and contemporary ones. You chose John Minton and Jo Empson, You note the differences in style well, noting that ‘our freedom to create and it is now more accepted to be different’ is a good point. Empson’s expressive, loose way of drawing is an illustrative style that really developed in the 1960s (after Minton’s time) with illustrators like Gerald Scarfe and Ralph Steadman.

For your Minton emulation you considered but rejected oils and lithography in favour of gouache. This is completely fine; exercises will inevitably be determined by access to materials and processes. The important thing is to consider the actual style, line quality and palette which are all possible to emulate with different materials and techniques.

I will keep this in mind, while I did think about lines and style I admit limiting the palette to the tones used did slip my mind completely. Thank you for the illustrators, I knew of Steadman work but Scarfe is new to me although a couple of pieces seem very familiar. I have bookmarked them both to use if not in this unit may be one of the others.

Your questions around your finished painting are good ones, regarding the ‘zombieness’ and ‘message. In some of your sketches there is more of a sense of place but your finished painting the background is a generic urban street, so the sense of narrative and place is a little limited. The ‘zombieness’ is created by the quite lurid red – the girl is well-painted but the rest is a little rushed. Your critical reflection is very good, though, ad your second more sketchy drawing is much stronger and closer to Minton’s palette and ink-style.

Thank you, this really took the thoughts out of my head I was feeling about the piece and I couldn’t pinpoint it. with the background, I tried to bring some of the loosenesses into the style and maybe unintentionally gave up when I started to feel like it wasn’t working.

Your Empson version is much closer to her work, with a freer, looser and quite clashing palette.

I really enjoyed this style, you will see bits appear in my sketchbook in part two, as I’ve seems to have taken some of this technique forward with me.

Exercise: The Key is communication The getting the gist exercise asked you to condense some chosen text into keywords and then have a go at illustrating them. While you spent the right amount of time on the previous exercise, you seem to have spent too long on this exercise. It is really intended as an opportunity to respond to a current event, brainstorm and produce an original drawing, but only really take a day ad a half to do this. You seem to have spent far too much time on the exercise – this has been valuable in terms of research, considering briefs and audiences, and lots of technical experimentation, but these opportunities will occur later in the course. Please bear in mind how long the exercises are taking you to complete, as time management is key.

I agree a huge part of it was my own desire to “understand”. I’m very much a researcher and I love knowledge. I will often be multi-tasking and finding things out while say cooking tea, watching t.v and even drawing.
I will try hard to let this show more in my sketchbook, as creative writers say “show and don’t tell!” guess is moto I should take on board here.

Your finished illustration is a great ‘spot’ illustration, but not really an editorial illustration, as the message is not clear enough. Perhaps the model could have been drawing a tiny amount of cream out of the jar with a pipette, or some other way of clarifying the cost of the cream.

I think I would like to explore this idea very soon, while I did put the price tag saying “rent” it disappeared in the spot.

That said, your final critical reflection is clear and accurate, but you don’t need to narrate the exercises quite as much as you have here – more evidence of drawing and sketching would be good. Try to show more and tell less.

I had to laugh, guess we are thinking along the same lines of showing more and saying less! This is something I’m pleased about, as it makes sense and I wanted to make sure I was doing enough and not too little. I will take this forward from the next few exercises after “1950s” as I’m being honest now, time-wise it is easier for me to take on board from this point. I think I narrate a bit to make up for lack of artist vocabulary, so just maybe I’m taking the long-winded approach.

Feedback on Assignment One: ‘Say Hello’ Assignment one asked you to create a greetings card that introduced yourself and your work.

Again you have put in much more work than requested. Try to follow the exercise instructions. It’s great that you researched greetings cards, but that kind of market research happens later in the course. The main point of this assignment is to create a self-portrait rather than think about markets.

I think I’m also using the learning log as a personal notebook as well. When I first started this it was easier to think as if was for a market than it was for “me” if this makes sense. Sometimes I find it hard to do things for myself lucky as the exercise went on I was warming up to this.

Your sketchbook pages are lovely here, full of colour and energy, and any of these pages would have worked as a finished assignment with some re-working.

Like the exercise brief drawing for myself I think I’m warming up in my sketchbook and creative thought, I’m a little worried I may have gone the other way a little in part 2. I’m really exploring ideas (maybe too much at this stage) BUT I will keep to a time frame to ensure I’m not spending too long on each exercise.

Please don’t document the details of your digital process as you have in part 3, its far too much work for you and unnecessary. We just want to see your sketches and then the finished digital image. You can then discuss what you could have done differently in critical reflection.

This is fine, it was a one-off for me. I thought maybe useful if I doing anything incorrectly or leaving anything out. YES, I worry a lot.
So I’m really taking on board what you want and need “less” off in my sketchbook and learning log.

Your finished digital drawing is technically very good, well-composed and coloured. The issue with it is it’s less of a portrait than your sketchbook pages where you drew your face. Perhaps in your final drawing you could have had your reflection or a drawing of yourself in the screen, making it a true portrait (I like the Butterscotch song, I have never heard that despite being just the right age to have heard it as a child !)

Maybe I am shy, On a serious note I do this a lot when comes to me unintentionally, very much behind the scene kind of person. I have to say I like this idea a lot and will be looking at this as I included the photo refection of me it is a nice tie in to the final piece. BIT gutted I didn’t think of this!

Your sketchbook work is very good. Learning Logs or Blogs / Critical essays Your learning log writing is very clear. Try to edit a little and focus clearly on how you develop ideas, material experimentation and critical reflection.

I agree with this, my ideas can jump a little as I’m one of the people who can spend time visualizing and editing in my own head as well as on paper. I also have forgotten to include random doodles I’ve drawn while doing exercises. I will make sure I will from this point onwards.

Pointers for the next assignment The next part of the course focuses on developing your ideas through all areas of the creative process, from a brief to finished illustrations. This is an opportunity for you to continue developing your creative process from a positive start. Give yourself room to develop a range of ideas, and experiment with different materials and ways of picture making. And remember the course part should take 90 hours, so no exercise should take longer than a day!

Thank you for a better understanding of the time frame, I think I needed to hear this.
As a matter of fact, I was worried I was “rushing”.

I am very pleased with this feedback, a lot I feel as if I knew and needed confirmation.
I don’t need to be told twice to draw more and talk less.
As I’ve already made a good start on part two, I feel naturally some of this advice has naturally taken on board while the rest will start to show after 1950s. I may have spent longer than intended on the mood board, BUT It is “extra” like homework really. I have taken it in to explore my thoughts and see where it leads me.

4 thoughts on “Feedback from Part one

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