Sept 10th, 2018
Today was the first day of class in CSM and going into class we were separated into groups and given three words. Our three words were: Futurism, Hair, Wrap. Then came the word map where I started to branch out the definition of each word from my own perspective and connect them in their meaning. In futurism I found forwardness and purpose which connected to 'wrap' in that they both possess purpose. A 'wrap' can intertwine objects and bring them together, while also acting as a separation or form of protection like 'hair' and so forth. My difficulty was trying to bring them together and form one whole meaning since the way I approached the subject was more abstract than literal. After creating this textual aid I began walking around to take photos and create a visual aid. I took pictures of people with their legs crossed in different ways around the class; hair being twisted on top of their heads or the back; plastic bags holding clay; furniture thrown atop each other in awkward ways like blocks that don't fit into one another or just thrown with no regard; and different postures that made clothes drape differently. Once I finished my group and I took turns speaking of what we came up with and began exchanging ideas. Im not really sure if my ideas from the word map were effective but if I had some more time I think I would've reached a common factor connecting the words. However, the visual aids really helped me since I easily plucked ideas from the images and shaped them to what I wanted. Next time I develop a concept I will try to put some literal meaning in my word map so I can have a balance of both abstract and literal meaning to accompany a wealth of visual aids.
Sept 11, 2018
Visual reflection means taking your words and manifesting them in a physical way. During class we did visual exercises that combated our normal way of working and that stretches our abilities, pushing us to do unexpected things. After we created lined drawings of objects in front of us, we were instructed to reimagine them in a different way by focusing on only a portion of the drawing. I enjoyed doing that the most as I reimagined my buddha charm and created a mixed media representation through tape, ink and paper. I will take the aesthetic ideas and materiality behind that to incorporate into my project. I still need to research about futurism, although I know I want to use Ayn Rands philosophy behind morality of man based on logic and mans life as a standard value in a collective society, while also focusing on every individuals subjective personality. Once I have the logic behind the piece I can go on to figuring how I can combine that with the materiality I want to use.
Sept 12th, 2018
While there is no class today I woke up early and got to the library to start researching about futurism to try and find a connection to Ayn Rand's view of man as a ' heroic being with his own happiness as the moral purpose of his life, with productive achievement as his noblest activity, and reason as his only absolute." Futurism represented that to me and while the word itself seems to represent some advanced society with flying cars and technology beyond imagination it masks the real meaning which is the ingenuity of man triggered only by his belief in himself.
* I forgot to write down the names of the books however I will attach photos and notes relating to the content I read
After reading the books I found that Fillipo Tommaso ( the founder of futurism) best described what futurism was, not an artistic movement but an evolution of man in redefining his mental discipline. However I wasted time getting to this point by reading page by page the previous books when I should have just skimmed through them. I was really inspired by these photographs taken by Wanda Would ("Me + Cat") and Anton Giulio ("The Roses" and "The Bow"). The movement in the photographs were so fluid but chaotic in how the physical presence of the individuals got intertwined with the energy and it reminded me again of Man's morality and sense of self in a time where society continually repress it.
Reading these books really changed my image of Futurism as I initially though it was this materialistic and aesthetically driven time period when it was so much more than that. It wasn't about the physical but the internal drive to manifest the physical.
Once I got home I started working on the piece I would make. Two mediums I had decided on were ink, tape and of course paper. I started to layer the tape on the page but it looked like it was lacking something so I started to spread ink on the stickier side and layering it on the page. However the color of the black ink was subdued since it was underneath the tape and so I layered ink on the opposite side as well. The tape represented the hair of individuals as they were unraveling at once to reveal something underneath that was bursting with energy, which was the "self" unfolded and true to its own shape and form. The "self" of individuals were torn pieces of paper with ink plastered on the front. I was inspired to do that when I saw a scrap of paper on a table of ink brushed across a paper. To add some color I made some bold caricatures of people that while may be physical exaggerations express something residing within them internally that has festered and turned into bitterness. It didn't mesh with the piece well and so I tried cutting them and playing them on the page but that didn't work either so I had to scrap the idea. My idea remained as it was with ink and paper. I spent hours after the caricatures trying to take a break and look back at what I could change or grow. And at 5am I decided It was full the way it was with meaning and purpose.
Sept 13th, 2018
Everybody was gathered at school preparing to showcase their pieces to everyone within the foundation course. I had struggled the previous night to finalize my piece, unsure whether it was complete or not. The caricatures were supposed to add some color and contrast to the techniques shown on the page but it just watered down the whole meaning and aesthetic. And so I was nervous and unsure what to do to elevate it. That morning we were given thirty minutes to prepare an area or secondary object to showcase our pieces and so I went off to one wall putting my notebook against it. However it needed something more to convey the depth of context it held and so I started assembling chairs awkwardly interlaced with one another to show how as a society we collectively force ourselves into a mold. The chairs were bent over one another wrapped in tape to hold them in place and on one of them I placed a charcoal sketch I made of individuals as though they were also being withheld from freedom. I think the chairs worked well together to convey the idea but the charcoal sketch didn't elevate the meaning of the piece and wasn't recurring on all the chairs so didn't make any sense. I'm please with the piece but I do feel like its missing something.
Sept 14th, 2018
Looking back at the week, I do feel like I made a lot of progress in how conceptually I am able to convey an idea although maybe without following it all the way through. I can't help but think its missing something like maybe color or just a strong contrast to the monochromic palette and chaotic brushstrokes. The caricatures were supposed to act as that contrast and I wasted hours worked on pieces that I wouldn't use. Eventually when I did discover it didn't fit I even tried cutting them up and placing them on the page but that didn't work out either. And so I have yet to pull that piece together. But the progression of ideas can clearly be seen from the work I did using ink and collage as well. The critique that I got from people is that I need to slow down when I am explaining my idea since I speak really fast, unable to convey the idea clearly. And that I should think of turning this piece into something more physical than two dimensional so that its more interactive. I learnt so much though in this one week, which is how context can really carry an idea and push the way you approach techniques and materials you have grown comfortable with.
Sept 17th, 2018
Buildings and structure were theme of todays class in that they would be our source of inspiration for the projects to come. We had to walk around CSM's campus in kings cross and gather sketches from buildings which we would draw shapes from and connect to form a garment. Im not pleased with all my drawings since I was rushing around trying to capture as much as I could, but their are concept's and sketches that hold potential (one concept I want to follow through is inspiration I drew from a construction site, which had a crane and bent metal erupting from the concrete). We had to finalize three shapes we would use to create a 3D miniature model and garment. The garment I created envelopes a lot of space and winds down the arm to create balance on both sides of the body. Im pleased with certain aspects of it, but not the overall result. However I do like the miniature 3D model I made using the three shapes with its organic shape and flowing lines. It almost resembles a vest disconnected at corners.
Sept 18th, 2018
5 important objects: My passport, eye contacts, talisman, Buddha charm and headphones. These are the items, that I would stack along with the members of my group to create nonsensical drawings, which would later make sense. We started off with line drawings that would allow for interesting lines and shapes to form and lead into us zooming into certain areas we liked and creating patterns on acetate. I loved interpreting the patterns on acetate in a more abstract way rather than a marker or pen but instead by using tape and string. And after the image was projected I traced the pattern onto to paper to create more patterns, however this time they were more focused and interesting.
Sept 20th, 2018
My favorite pieces were either in my bag or on me this day since we had to bring colorful garments to style one another through creative draping, which we would illustrate. I loved doing this so much as I was able to push and combine mediums to convey line, movement and textiles. Since the models switched positions often I overlapped them and didn't try to make it neat, instead opting for a more gritty portrayal. One part I struggled with was creating patterns that we would cut up and glue onto our line drawings to represent the models clothes. I didn't know the patterns were gonna be used in such a way and just didn't have enough time to process and think of a pattern. It ended up looking confused with nonsensical patterns that served no purpose.
Sept 24th, 2018
Collections were the main topic of todays class as we were introduced to physical and abstract ways of collecting. We were assigned to make a collection by going outside and gathering things that drew us in and unfortunately that wasn't so easy for me despite what a beautiful day it was. I kept walking around from street to street struggling to find anything. Then I wandered into a shop and saw a back scratcher shaped like a hand, bought it then proceeded to make many people uncomfortable. I snuck up behind my friend and started scratching her hair and capturing it on camera, both her reaction and the textural movement of her hair. I did that to a few other people throughout the day but didn't have any idea where this was really going. I thought it was funny and liked the textural videos I was getting but it seemed so flat and not thick with meaning or purpose. So I screen shotted images from the videos and made a collage and patterns with the photos and recognized that I should use these videos to make textiles or fabrics. Or maybe a project on intimacy and how people get uncomfortable when you get up in their space. But I think I need a break from this to sort through my thoughts and figure out where this will go tomorrow.
Sept 25th, 2018
Despite feeling creatively blocked I progressed my idea into something sort of solid since that was our assignment of the day. I was really inspired by Ai Weiwei's piece, "Straight" since he was able to create so much context and meaning by adjusting and changing something already made. I started off by trying to branch out my ideas of intimacy and touch. For example when thinking of how people were shuddering, pressure points came to mind, in how these individuals spots can pierce us so deeply and effect us as a whole. And how we possess so many throughout our body. I also thought of hair as a protective layer that can encircle us and wanted to create a representation of that through fabric which would encircle the body. I also thought of creating swatches made of different materials and textiles to represent people. I would photograph them and reinterpret them through fabric. And by having strangers touch these swatches they are confronting the issue of intimacy by interacting with a nonliving object that possesses remnants of a living person. My final idea entailed creating my own hair pins and accessories to interfere or interrupt with your own bubble as it represents physical or emotional encounters you have had with people which can't seem to go. Looking back I still feel like my ideas need to be solidified or I need to untangle the mess of ideas in my mind and actually start getting to work since we only have a day to finish these projects. Also I feel like it took me a long time to form these ideas since I felt a bit creatively blocked so I hope no time is wasted in completing these projects tomorrow.
Sept 26th, 2018
I woke up with the intent of centering my day on creating swatches, which would act as a substitute for people in terms of intimacy and touch. I decided on buying my materials from a hair shop, since whenever I scratched peoples heads with the back scratcher device they would shake since its such a sensitive part of your body. While it is available to the public eye most of the time its really personal in that when somebody runs their hands through your hair its really sensitive and can be the most calming thing. So I headed to a hair shop called Pak's which is in Finsbury and sells everything related to hair. They had a variety of fabrics for hair like silk and cottons which I bought in muted colors of white and lilac, along with countless pins in order to pin them and create shape. After buying the materials I got started on creating the swatches and initially I struggled with deciding on the size. I didn't want them to be too large but just big enough to have an impression of what it is so the swatches come in different sizes depending on the amount of material I had. It was actually really soothing doing this project since I started early in the day. So I wasn't rushed and it came naturally so nothing I made was forced during the beginning. However as I started to run out of materials I had to become more creative and make sure I wasn't repeating the same design with everything, while still maintaining cohesion. So a few of my swatches towards the end were bad, but I'll try to make some new ones tomorrow in class with a clear mind.
September 27th, 2018
Despite feeling a bit worried that I didn't have enough swatches for todays critique I worked in class to finish three more, which was easy since I woke up with a fresh approach to the materials. I arranged the swatches in different places in order to find the perfect spot but the table was too flat and lifeless. And the shelf was too high so people couldn't see what they were looking at. However I found these two steps, which were perfect for display since they acted as a stage for my objects. Once I laid them out I realized the context of my pieces was really hard to interpret so I decided to take photos of the individuals that inspired my pieces from the beginning. The photos were taken against a white wall and I took them so they appeared like passport photos but less stiff. Im not happy with the turnout though since I wish I could have printed them to look like actual passport pictures on the proper type of glossy paper and also the pictures weren't that good since I was rushed and some of the people that inspired the piece were too busy for me to photograph them, so I had to reuse people's photos. Overall Im pleased with what I managed to do but Im disappointed with the photographs and wish I could've spent more time with making more swatches and creatively push how I made them.
September 28th, 2018
Looking back at this week Im really surprised with how I got to a really solid end result despite feeling so creatively blocked. The swatches idea was my first solid idea and its funny to see how much time I spent developing other ones when at the end I returned to my initial one. However I do feel like like the other ideas I developed concerning the brush which would entangle the body in fabric or hair pins inspired the initial swatch idea. Or in fact the other ideas were just branches of the initial one. I do wish I took better pictures of the individuals and focused on centering the pieces around them more. One of the critiques I got was that I should incorporate items from the individuals into the pieces to make it more personal and about them and that would have made each swatch more subjective to each person. I also wish I had more time to make swatches or perfect the ones I had however towards the end I was running low on materials but overall I am pleased with the point I got to.
October 1st, 2018
Today is my first week of graphics and the focus for Monday is fashion marketing. We were told to pair up and style each other using contrasting themes and ideas that could be represented through clothing and textiles. My partner and I had contradicting senses of style however our clothes meshed well together despite retaining different qualities as hers were monochrome and had varied textures, while mine were feminine, colorful. I started draping clothing on her using a rack of hooks on the wall right after we began the course and tied colored aprons around her body and the hooks. Then we went back and forth creating hybrids and our own inventions. I got a bit stuck using the same fabrics and clothing, wishing I brought more stuff and better things since I didn't realize we would be creating so many looks, however that made me and my partner Kaykay push it even further. The photos I took using my phone are not so clear and so wish I brought a camera with me however by photoshopping and editing them they could turn out better.
I responded to working as a team really well since my partner was creative and competent. We combined our ideas and looks by layering our fabrics and clothing and shapes them in ways that fused them together which was really interesting. My idea of fashion communication has changed a lot since I didn't realize they pushed the way you perceive the clothing to such an extent. And not just by the placement of the clothing but also by the movement of the body. It holds a lot of context and previously I thought it didn't hold depth. The photography helped by creating a narrative that could help the reader understand the clothing on the body. The photos people took in class were so impressive for example contorting the body in exaggerating ways to creative a conflicting narrative to restrictive clothing as though the wearer is trying to break free. Or using the surrounding area outside and lighting in combination with the clothes to talk about the structure and layout of the clothing.
October 2nd, 2018
Illustration was our focus today and we began by creating and image to screen print based on a letter or number. So we had to perceive the letter or shape not as a symbol but as a shape and turn into something malleable and an object. I had the letter P which was a bit difficult since I kept seeing very basic things in the beginning. For example a belly so a man could be standing on a scale trying to pull the belly back and unable to view the number or the queens crown so someone could be attempting to kiss her on her head but she has her fingers held up in warning. The one idea I was eager to see through was to convert it into a wavelength equivalent to the ones you see in digital music production. And make a page full of notes moving and organic shapes flowing. But it didn't turn out the way I want and So I'm disappointed because I was really hoping it would pan out but the objects are too small and with screen printing you need to create objects with more solid shapes and form rather than thin lines since the color really empowers the image.
October 4th, 2018
I didn't expect todays class to begin by texting a stranger from the neighboring classroom on the subject of fear and what it means to us. We exchanged numbers anonymously however I didn't open up to a large extent on what fear means to me since it felt too personal but I did talk about questions I had regarding fear in our current generation. If I was to get deep into it fear is trust and intimacy to me and just being let down. But what we did get into is how with age you adjust to fears you have. And how prevalent the fear of being alone is, which is such a paradoxical thing in the age we live in. We are constantly talking through social media and the internet however physically speaking we are alone. And by investing so much times in these fictional landscapes we become a part of them. But by taking our phone away we would have to learn to deal with the things we are faced in life and are unable to distract ourselves from them through technology. So theres this ongoing theme of entrapment and being stuck in this cyclical pattern of distraction fear and isolation. The phrase I used from our conversation was that, "We are another landscape on our phones". I decided to represent that by screen shotting different windows, images and text on my laptop, then placing it on a glass pane which separated the two classrooms. So on the glass are all these digital images which are static but contrast with this moving background that can be seen through the glass of people walking around. Making the people moving around a part of the digital landscape Im trying to imitate. To be honest Im not happy with the end result of what I did. I really like the quote that I used but It isn't centered on typography and I wish I pushed it farther with text. However I work in combination with text and imagery and I've alway found it a bit tough to be dependent on typography alone.
October 8th, 2018
I never thought I would be into 3DDA but today changed my whole perspective on jewelry design as an accessory to something that can hold so much context like fine arts. Watching the presentation was interesting as we kept getting introduced to different methods of manipulating materials to create meaning that holds weight physically but also figuratively. For example an artist made an ear piece that would be inserted perfectly into your ear shaped as a shell with a pearl inlaid or a hand piece that only fits when you bend your fingers a certain way or a shoe that uses a wooden heel strapped to your feet by black ribbon to perform. The craftsmanship, the detail and the simplicity they possess speaks volumes for what they mean. Afterwards we were given three words surround, suspend and support to create a piece that represents what that is. My favorite ideas were a piece that would be placed on your hairline with clips on either side to pin your hair down. And a piece which is tied to the tips of your fingers with balls of ink attached to the end of the wire as they move fluidly to create a picture of ink or something. And clips that could be attached to your body like underneath your arms or your sides, neck, leg, etc. And lastly a small bowl that would fit in the groove of your hand. Or a piece that goes on your hand acting as a silhouette but expands at the top of ur fingertips which could be used to dig or to hold items like an extension of ones hand. And lastly just rolled up paper acting as a dress and you can roll it up or down to show or hide pieces of your body or clothes. The idea I went with was the wire tied to tips of my fingers extending downwards with ink tied at the ends. I got some green wire and coiled it around my fingers however I didn't have time to craft a design for it and so it was a just a simple coil and the tough part was the ink. I got a plastic glove and cut out the part for the fingers and filled it with ink then used tape to shut it close. It was a really messy process and thinking back I should've tied it shut rather than taped it because when I tried to form a hole in it it was hard since it wasn't shut properly. However Im pleased with what I made in such a short period of time although the craftsmanship needed more thought and attention to detail.
October 9th, 2018
We delved into product design today and it can be summed up as something that uses human ingenuity to create products that break the creative barrier while still maintaining simplicity. For example a student made a candle holder with a slit to slide down the matchstick; or a chair than can be flipped and functions the same way. We were then told to buy a bunch of cherry tomatoes and lemons in order to brainstorm ideas which can hold them. We started with products to hold one lemon then two and then three, which was also done with the cherry tomatoes and this allowed for me to shape some initial ideas into larger scale ones. So for my tomatoes I made a basket out of wire that fits snug into the tomato with string attached to either side and loop to put your finger in. So you can swing your hand back and forth propelling movement with the tomato. However my second round of making a product for 5 tomatoes was a bit messy since it was made of three strands of wire holding the tomatoes on either side and on the bottom with a handle at the end. And for my lemon I thought of making a yoyo which actually worked really well with one lemon individually (I fiddle with my food a lot in grocery stores and so my ideas mainly centered on making playful products ). I could snap it back and from my hand. But this round was about creating something for three lemons and so I made a triangular perimeter out of straw and created a web of rubber bands in the center where I attached lemons on different corners. And by lifting the triangular perimeter, the rubber bands begin to snap and move the lemons. Im really surprised that I worked well with three dimensional objects. However I'm not pleased with my execution of my ideas since we had short amounts of time.
October 11th, 2018
Architecture was todays topic and we were put in groups of 6 to create a model used sticks of bamboo tied together. We created two shapes that relied on triangles and rather than it being a tall structure it was long and twisted at the top. So it was a structure you would walk into that stretched and twisted at the ceiling. Once we were placing the paper to show how we would cover it up we allowed for a balance between positive and negative space. So their was glass on the top stretching to the bottom and sides.
October 22nd, 2018
The research that was done the weekend prior this class was central to how we approached everything in class today. We were first told to pick one of the public pieces of art and create a mini paper structure out of it, comprised of three shapes that are attached at the edges. It was really tricky since while taping the edges I had to force the pieces together which created depth and shape in ways I didn't expect. Aferwards we were to pick another three shapes and make a larger structure which we would attach onto a person and I really enjoyed this part of class. My piece had a lot of depth and so I used both sides of it ( the interior and exterior) to show different possibilities. Rather than having it act as a fitted contour, the piece was always acting as an extension of the body and I'm most please with the pant version of it.
October 23rd, 2018
Before entering todays class we had to research about the functionality of garments in society for example workwear with fireman, doctors, etc. However I was instantly drawn to the functionally within product design and how that could be applied to clothes. For example wallets with the way they unfold and their pockets or hairpins and clips or braids in how they attach to one another and can be used to define features. I wasn't able to delve in completely with my research however Ill try to complete some more later on. In class I got confused on how the garments we were drawing were taken straight out of the images we previously took the day before. And how it would a shape that encompasses the whole body not just a section. But I got it after a few mistrials. So the garments I created are functional and have pieces inspired by my research from wallets and hairpins and even a candle holder idea that a CSM student did in product design where the matchstick can be slipped in rather than you burning yourself. I still need to work on the drawings but Im pleased with how I progressed throughout the day from being confused to understanding the idea.
October 25th, 2018
Prior to class we were given homework to reproduce a section of the garments we made and I completed a majority of one garment and trials of another. One of which was the pockets that envelope the arms and another was the use of hairpins to contour the body or pinch fabric. Overall It was a difficult class and Im only realizing now how much I need to develop my illustrative style or just loosen up and not be so rigid. We did a ton of drawing today onto A3 sheets that acted as representations of the collections we made. And while mine are very straightforward they lack interest and are rigid. Everybody in class really explored illustrative styles that are creative but convey the idea properly and I didn't realize we were to take that approach until the consecutive critiques. I need to develop my style and redo my A3 sheets.
October 29th, 2018
Textiles is this weeks theme and we were to meet at the barbican. Half of the day included us drawing sections of it and I was really fascinated with these door handles that had loops encircling them and the stairs. The buildings themselves were really angular and symmetrical and also represented brutalism. Once we got back we were to make patterns and transform them into collages that were representation of the buildings. I really enjoyed doing this and tried different ways of manipulating mediums I always worked with. For example I took clear tape and drew over it in black marker then added water to it and taped it over. and when you press on it the water moves underneath without seeping and its really organic. I also combined tipex and water that created this white veiny like cloud and combined that over black ink. I don't like the collages I made however the patterns were nice before I tore them apart to make the collages.
October 30th, 2018
Today was just not my day. I missed the presentation on textiles since I had a sewing induction and so delved straight into the projects for the day. We were told to make collages out of images of architecture and each image had a different approach and we steadily started removing and combining materials like in textiles. Im not happy with my collages and need to work on them and then we had to make tiny swatches which I need to redo since I just didn't get the idea. Overall I'm really disappointed with how this day went but Im sure if I just sit and process the idea Ill get a better grasp of the assignments.
November 1st, 2018
Our textiles were due today and I worked on them all night however once I got to class and spoke to a tutor I realized I screwed up again. I think Im overthinking this whole project and still don't grasp the proper idea. The pieces I made fit more under the swatches category rather than a collection. They are alike in the techniques and mediums I used but different. So same same but different. Basically I just need to redo this as well.