The artists sites/collectives side bar is accountable for artist research.
I have found my first yearly experience of subject and student life in general, to be a bit of a wake up call. The first few weeks of the course I was a bit cocky and I thought I would just repeat what I would normally do everyday before I came to university, and not pay too much attention to what the tutors had to say. Thinking the immense detail of my drawings would be enough to impress people and take me places. However as the classes went on, the more my strengths and weaknesses became more apparent.
One of the strengths I have gained through subject, is that my confidence has grown to become very experimental and more playful with my drawings, not only with techniques but with conceptual ideas and narratives as well, which has provided a gate way to express the humorous side of my self. Primarily, my work at the moment is focused around and within drawings with partial dabblings in sound designing, but as of recently I have ventured into the world of street art and wall painting. I feel like I have something unique and interesting to bring to the street art world. Venturing into this new territory, it is important to remember my responsibility as an illustrator, which has been an important lesson learnt within the subject modules as well as the feedback sessions from one to one tutorials and group crits. I am trying to move away from the self absorbed, random high school teenager doodle style that I am most known for and aiming towards creating work with more substance, with humour and more feeling, as opposed to pretending to be this machine who can pump out meticulous works, for the sake of wowing or shocking people. Although my drawings that are known for that have edged me into the blossoming underground art scene in Cardiff (Modern Alchemists, Straight up Lines, etc) I want to be able to take what I have learnt and utilize it to make my output as fresh as possible. It’s an incredibly exciting period of my life, that I wouldn’t of been able to reach if it wasnt for university.
I also seem to have a bit of a problem tackling some of the briefs. I find it hard to juggle personal projects alongside them, so I often at times end up trying to attempt to integrate my personal work into the briefs. This can be challenging. I hate having to lie, but sometimes I feel like I have to in order to reach a deadline due to my personal work being a lengthy process. In my mind the pieces that end up becoming integrated make the conceptual essence rather forced and pretentious. I aim to plain ahead and meditate on things before embarking on lengthly creative expression, be it what ever medium…
My sonic arts seminars within the Constellation module have also provided alot of insight towards my sound practitions. I am becoming more knowledgable of the history behind experimental sound composition, noise and ambient fields, and taking influence from the some of the main figures mentioned in lectures, for instance Stockhausen’s cutting and paste compositional methods which I am utilizing within my own work, which is becoming rather obsessive, alot like drawing but I have yet to integrate the two cohesivley. I aim to do this by practicing animation (probably cut out) for future briefs and projects. Overall I feel like I am getting to that point where I am in an abundance of ideas, but to get to certain points I want to finish what I have started to reach an equilibrium.
The head used for this piece is from my original drawing that was going to be accountable for the whole of my individual work (along with the sound work). It was a winged head with human genitalia forming out it’s sides, which were ejaculating buildings ans cash flow. It’s eyes have string like texture coming out of them that was forming a screaming mouth over the top of it’s head, instead of actual pupils and retina. A cloud formed out from the mouth which had more buildings coming out of it. The buildings represented the city, and that the words and concept of a city that is familiar, we have adapted to. It may be impossible to unlearn such a habitual mindset. The open eyes (that were used in the picture below) were drawn onto the wings, which represents the movement of a parasitic and delusional being, the sight from the eyes is what powers the wings, like a chasing hunger, furiously searching for the next big urban development, unaware of any fault and missing out the tiny details. The concept is highly exaggerated, bold and a bit far out and I think the pieces gives that kind of feel, which is intentional because it creates interesting aesthetics. Having cut out the head and stuck it onto a torso, eliminating all the buildings, gives way to a new concept, which added alot of worry and an element of panic to the work. This adds to the aesthetic also.
I can say that these collages embrace the element of panic and fear that I faced when trying to come up with a concept for a city, which also reflect exaggerated states of being whilst inside a city. The people are shown as viscous and horrifying creatures, which reflects my views of humanity in general. And where are humans found most? In a city of course. City’s are like little human hives, except to a person they are big.
For most of the images I can add text, one of my plans that I never got round to was to capture field recordings of people around the city and draw from them, I could easily quote snippets of people talking in Cardiff that I find particularly interesting, or scary. I would like record someone saying something equally as disgusting as the images, or something that i can feed into the image to become relevant.
Something also needs to be added to show that the influence is from people within a city. For this I could photocopy a map of Cardiff, and draw, collage over the top of it, in the spots that I picked up the (hypothetical) field recordings from.
Alongside some large scale mixed media work, I also experimented with sound to illustrate some of my views of people within a city, it is not quite a social commentary but more of an anti-social social commentary whilst also making fun of people.
The album is on bandcamp and can be found by clicking here
The tracks were composed using samples from videos, field recordings around cardiff, instruments such as guitar, keyboard and effects pedals.
We presented our idea to the rest of the Power & Technology group, and it went very well. Everyone said their bit with confidence. I said my part, which is mostly explained here. https://samjwall.wordpress.com/category/field-research/
Our power point consisted mostly of pictures and videos that we could use as reminders of some of the things we came up for our ideas.
This is the first drawing I completed for a set of prophecy posters. I had this drawing in progress before the brief was announced, so I was pretty much focusing all my time on getting this done throughout most of the time we had to complete the posters by, so I didn’t really think of what the posters could be used for, exactly. But now I have come to think of them as posters for made up films.
I like to think of Utopia as a black-comedy with social commentary underpinnings. Originally this poster expresses a cringing sharp feeling inside when I hear somebody mention ideas of grandeur about a Utopia or a perfect world. It’s something I’ll never understand. There’s a lot of things this poster could be, but is it really worth the effort? I’m not too into it. I feel like these ideas expressed here should be sufficient for the brief.
“Shit Film Discount #1 The Daily Paranoia”
I started drawing out this ridiculously bad face, it looked like a Bobby, and as I drew the face out I imagined an old american, deep male narrators voice saying “Bobby always had that killer smile…” over a shot of Bobby’s ugly face in a high school prom photo or something. I realized this is something that would be seen in a cheesy, poorly produced film. The type that’s so bad but you can’t help but watch it because it’s so funny. This prophecy poster predicts that there will be a new label associated to these types of films, something along the lines of A SHIT FILM DISCOUNT! sticker on the cover of the dvd or vhs.
‘Shit Film Discount #2 Cry Hard 8’
OOH WHATS THAT? A DOUBLE PROPHECY? Shit film discount label PLUS the coming of Bruce Willis’ last Die Hard, Cry Hard 8. Where Bruce Willis is an old crone getting shit done. This one was fun because it was a big release for my hatred of these films, with the sarcastic captions.
I still have yet to reproduce these via screen print.
A couple weeks ago I heard that my friend Steve from back home in Suffolk was coming to Cardiff to perform at St David’s Hall with a theatre group putting on a ‘Dinosaur Zoo’ show with large life like puppets, he got me in for free and I did some sketches, for fun.
After the show I met up with Steve for a coffee, which is how I met Crav, a liberation activist (Food-Not bombs, people before profit, and probably a load more) and one of the folk who runs the Wells Hotel in riverside, where Steve was staying. We got talking about couch surfing, street art, and how one of colour doomed’s early paintings was done in the Wells’ courtyard, and how I could come paint there sometime, as well as a zine that crav self publishes called “FUCK OFF FACEBOOK”.
It’s thing’s like this that really make me appreciate Cardiff, because it’s a “little big” city, it’s not the biggest city but there’s a lot of great things happening in the art scene (the side of which I best fit into, anyway…), and people within the scene are more than likely connected. After Steve had left, Crav took me to the Wells.
As soon as I entered it felt like a totally different world, there was art, stickers and stencils on literally everything, including the bath tub. I wish I snapped more pictures but I didn’t want to come across as annoying.
In one of the rooms Crav pulled these amazing woodcut prints, the artist’s name escapes me right now but I will find out soon enough.
This was a really cool and spontaneous experience, I was touched by Crav’s enthusiasm for art and what he believes in, putting people first and doing stuff to put things right through activism.
Lately I’ve been really obsessed with interpreting the human face, through drawing. I like to draw it in a rough dirty style with black ink.
!!!!!!!!!!!!SUPPORT THE UGLY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
(PLANS FOR A WALL PAINTING ^)
^ THE PAINTING. (STILL IN PROGRESS)
I like to add my own touches aswell, like the fangs. It adds to the menacing aspect and also backs me up on the fact that I’m not trying really hard to capture a perfect realist portrait.
I feel like I am exploring new territory here, and I am really loving it. I can feel my horizons broadening! Life drawing is fun and exciting for me because it never comes out right, and I would never want it to come out perfect. Just take a photo if you want realism.