Sketches – Assignment 5

These sketches were initial ideas for my Assignmet 5. They are silluetes of quick drawing of a woman’s ageing body. I thought of a clock without handles to represent “lack of time” the chose colours: black, red and gold. Red to represent the end of a woman’s period, black to keep it simple and gold for the concept of “kintsugi” I wanted to apply for this Assignment . I tried to simplify in the end just with the woman’s body in blue/turquoise colour to remind a ceramic piece.

The process for the series of pieces: 

Collage:

Felt:

3D piece: Paper marche :

 

Assignment 5

Review of Artists: Egon Schiele and Louise Bourgeois

 Egon Schiele, 1890- 1918 and  Louise Borgeouis 1911-2010    

The reason have chosen these two artists is because they both inspire me with how they expressed their emotions and feelings in art. How they dared to show their deep thoughts and struggles putting pain and pleasure in at the same level of expression. They  were both intense, passionate and focused in what they want to produce. They had a mixture of anger and love in their lines, sometimes smooth and with a flow, sometimes thick, irregular, heavy.   

Egon Schiele in a very short life career has created more than three thousand drawings and  although Gustav Klimt was his mentor , Egon developed his own style. His work intrigued me at first with the way he used space and his mark making was very unique with dry brush strokes and irregular spontaneous lines. The distortion of his figures merely affected the shape and beauty of the women’s body he drew.  His erotic and daring ways of drawing his models in very revealing poses and also in his various self portrait is nonetheless surprising  considering the time he lived in. He risked and openly expressed his deep feelings and emotions as well as his  psychological disturbances in shocking yet artistically beautiful ways. I like how he focused mostly in the models, in unusual positions with absence of  background .Most of their facial expressions were strong and all  sexual and erotic feel exudes in every drawing. His lines were spontaneous and the unfinished limbs or hands/feet was just another trademark of his work . It had to be finished that way like the end of a string that he used to contour the drawings. It was simply  unnecessary to add any more to it. I learn something interesting overtime I observe his work. I want to keep exploring and drawing the human figure with similar rawness and flow. 

 Louise Borgeouis who was primarily a sculptor with an avid ability working on materials such as : stone, bronze, metal, wood and embroidery .The large scale sculptor Maman – a spider considered one of the largest sculpture in the world measuring  30 feet high and  more than 30 feet wide gives the idea of  her remarkable talent and ability to work from drawings, concept and finished product . Maman started as drawing and it was a revelation to me of  how some artists generate ideas to develop into sculptures starting from some sketches/drawings. Her drawings series that encouraged me to keep exploring my mark making possibilities are : L’ infini about unmapped expanse and life cycle . I like the washes of watercolour,  the  shapes  reminds me body organs and  the predominant colour red . It is all powerful, with strings, resembling veins and bodily parts seeing from the inside. “Insomnia” are drawings of repetitive patterns, in different sizes and some containing words , or poems also with predominance of red colour. In my opinion, these drawings are  engaging to the eyes as if you are been hypnotised when looking at it.  “10am When you come to me”  is a more sentimental work. It is serene, calm and simple. It shows a lot gratitude for her 30 years assistant Jerry Gorovoy.      Don’t Abandon me” ,her collaborative work with artist Tracey Emin refers to the loss of both – unborn child of Tracey Emin and Louise loss of a child. Again, the washes of watercolour, limited palette with dominance of red and blue, body shapes, genitals and sexuality shows feeling and emotions overflowing from the paintings.  The balance between delicate lines and blotches of paint is beautiful. I am so inspired with Louise Borgeois work because her transparency in transport raw feelings, emotions and concepts making the worse that came out of her conscious and unconscious mind into her best pieces of work as an artist. 

Assignment 5 : Kintsugi Woman

My final body of work is an image in large scale of a ageing woman’s body. It measures 1.50height x 1.00width.I drew  and coloured it in watercolour, then I torn it up into pieces to  glue it together, rejoining the pieces  as in the Japanese art for ceramics called: Kintsugi- where broken pieces appeared to look better after it is rejoined  with a special technique applying golden colour paint. The difference is that I applied the technique on paper and used golden paint . Drawing was smooth and easy but when I had to tear it, my emotions came out, it hurt me in a way. The reconstruction of it was comforting and brought me a certain amount of pleasure fixing something the way I could.

Kintsugi: The art of embracing damage (2014) [user-generated content online] creat. Nerwriter, 30 May 2014 at :

(Acessed 11 May,  2019)

My initial idea was to use expressive lines, a la Schiele, maybe just shapes or a clock in golden colour to represent how precious time is. It then developed to some silhouette of women and the clock to show time running out but it didn’t quite work the way I imagined. It just didn’t fit together. In the end I decided for a simple spontaneous drawing of a female body. An ageing body but yet still very erotic and sensual. Something I have always liked in the work of Bourgeois and Schiele . I chose the blue/turquoise colour after I decided to use “Kintsugi” concept   because it seems to be a very suitable colour for ceramics.The most tradicional and beautiful pieces of Japanese ceramic I have appreciated were in the shades of blue.  I wanted the drawings to resembled a bit a ceramic piece . I tried a few positions and angles but my final piece turned out to look a bit like a sculpture and I liked it that way. The outcome of the final body of work has the right grandiosity, expression and beauty I wanted to deliver.

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Even though  I was happy with the result of my Assignment 5 final piece, after a video call  with my Tutor Adam Thompson ,he  suggested that it would be really good to make a series of pieces for this final Assignment. A series using the same concept with different techniques I have explorered in this module. Considering the work above is too big to send for Formal Assessment and folding it to send via mail would probably damage the presentation , having a series of work photographed together with the main piece, would be perhaps greatly appreciated by the assessors.

 

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kintsugi woman – collage on paper

I first started working with collage which I still think there is a lot room for improvement because collage is  new to me. I just wanted to explore how I feel about it. Following the same concept: Ageing body x Kintsugi, I chose one of my lose sketches and pasted images of the women I admire most, and they work/ worked until over the age of 90! Yayoi  Kusama is 90 years old , Iris Apfel 97years old  and Louise Bourgeois was 98years old when she died. Incredible women and artists. My collage involves not only their image but a touch of what is  the trademark from each of them. The naked female body of Louise Bourgeois, dots of Yayoi Kusama and an accessory for Iris Apfel. I torn the work into pieces again in the same way I did for the Final Assessment piece to rejoin the pieces  with cuts of golden paper. The result is not as interesting I have imagined but I got stuck in what more I could do. Collage can be very challenging as in when to stop or when to add more.

 

My second piece to add to the series is a piece of felt that I drew the shape of the body, cut it again and stitched with yellow/goldish threat. I add details with acrylic paint and painted over the stitches with golden paint. It is a small piece but I want to keep the consistency as in the same kind of work and concept.

 

Finally, I made an old woman’s body model out of paper Marche. I layered with molding plaster to give it a more sculputure alike look. The turquoise colour was done in acrylic .To deconstruct it I had to use hammer in someparts and a knife in others. Another painful process and yet I knew that a relief would come right after when I started the process of reconstruct it.

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The series photographed together is to show the difference between scale and technique as well as how I applied each different technique but kept the same consistency with the subject and concept. I still like the first piece because I wanted to work in big scale and present a very spontaneous drawing but I understand that for my formal Assessment, exploring other ways to represent my initial idea would be more interesting .

Assignment 5 Reflection 

This Assignment pushed me to challenge myself in trying something different, risky, to  experiment more. Although I still prefer the first piece in big scale, I understood that for a final module Assignment I needed to show more, work harder. It was my first time doing collage and 3D pieces. Collage was the most challenging experience. Collage takes a lot planning in a way and it is time consuming. I am an impulsive person  and I like to express and feel my work in a single moment. I am trying to learn how to take a step back, start a piece and go back after a day or two  and see with fresher eyes what others possibilities are there, what can I change, improve. I am not sure I am there yet or if  it works for me but I am taking risks and experimenting different ways of doing art, it is all very valuable at this point.I want to take every opportunity to learn, to find my voice and path as I see and try new things.  3D was another new experience and I like the results. My pieces are  surely a very beginner product but I am considering the process and what I have learned so far. Exploring Drawing Media was overwhelming with the amount of information, techniques and  processes. I have again discovered artists that I would never have if wasn’t part of my researches. The only thing that worries me now is my academic levels in reading, writing and learn how to critically see and write about art. I hope I can get all the support I need at OCA as I am putting all my heart into this learning journey. I know I can see art well, I can feel and understand, I am finding some new skills I didn’t know I had such as expressive abstract drawing. The difficult part is to put it into words, present my work for the formal assessment. It makes me apreehensive .

Katia Chester Report 5

 

 

 

 

 

 

Exercise 5.2- Planning your review

Select two artists whose work resonates with your own practice or who between them set up an interesting framework to discuss an aspect of drawing media that is relevant to you and your practice.Ideally at least one of the artists should be someone whose exhibition you have visited during your course. You could also choose one the the several artists represented reasonably fully in the key texts.You should write around 500 words, but you won’t be penalised for writing slightly less or slightly more than this.

 My review on the work of Egon Schiele and Louise Bourgeois

Egon Schiele, 1890- 1918 and  Louise Borgeouis 1911-2010    

The reason have chosen these two artists is because they both inspire me with how they expressed their emotions and feelings in art. How they dared to show their deep thoughts and struggles putting pain and pleasure as in a  similar state of mind. The intensity is shown equally  either it is a  painful or full of pleasure image.

Egon Schiele in a very short life career has created more than three thousand drawings and  although Gustav Klimt was his mentor , Egon developed his own particular style. His work inspires for the use of space  and his mark making was very unique with dry brush strokes and irregular spontaneous lines. The distortion of his figures merely affected the shape and beauty of the women’s body he drew.  His erotic and daring ways of drawing his models in very revealing poses and also in his various self portrait is nonetheless surprising  considering the time he was living in. He risked and openly expressed his deep feelings and emotions as well as his  psychological disturbances in shocking yet artistically beautiful ways. I like how he focused mostly in the models, in unusual positions with absence of  background .Most of their facial expressions were strong and all the sexual and erotic feel exudes in every drawing. His lines are spontaneous and the unfinished limbs or hands/feet was just right . It had to be finished that way like the end of a string that he used to contour that drawing. It was simply  unnecessary to add any more to it. I want to keep exploring and drawing the human figure with similar rawness and flow. 

 Louise Borgeouis who was primarily a sculptor with an avid ability working on materials such as : stone, bronze, metal, wood and embroidery .The large scale sculptor Maman – a spider considered one of the largest sculpture in the world measuring  30 feet high and  more than 30 feet wide gives the idea of  her remarkable talent and ability to work from drawings, concept and finished product . Maman started as drawing and it gave me the idea how some artists generate ideas to develop into sculptures . Her drawings series that encouraged me to keep exploring my mark making possibilities are : L’ infini about unmapped expanse and life cycle . I like the washes of watercolour, shapes which reminds me body organs and  the predominant colour red . It is all powerful, with strings, resembling veins and bodily parts seeing from the inside. “Insomnia” are drawings of repetitive patterns, in different sizes and some containing words , or poems also with predominance of red colour. In my opinion, these drawings are  engaging to the eyes as if you are been hypnotised when looking at it.  “10am When you come to me”  is a more sentimental work. It is serene, calm and simple. It shows a lot gratitude for her 30 years assistant Jerry Gorovoy.  Don’t Abandon me” ,her collaborative work with artist Tracey Emin refers to the loss of both – unborn child of Tracey Emin and Louise loss of a child. Again, the washes of watercolour, limited palette with dominance of red and blue, body shapes, genitals and sexuality shows feeling and emotions overflowing in the paintings itself. The balance between delicate lines and blotches of paint is beautiful. I am so inspired with Louise Borgeouis work because her transparency in bringing  raw feelings, emotions and concepts in her art making the worse that came out of her conscious and unconscious mind into her best pieces.

1. How is pencil/charcoal and watercolour used in the work of Egon Schiele and Louise Borgeois and how does my own work locate within that???

Both artists were very expressive with spontaneous lines, sometimes putting more pressure in it, sometimes drawing with a soft flow. I think my best work comes when I just feel very expressive and let it flow out of me. It is when I don’t think much and let it happen that drawings with a lot feelings and emotions come to life. I think I get that  intensity in a similar ways of Egon Schiele and Louise Borgeois.

 

 

 

2. Women/ageing has been a recurring theme in my work. Looking at Egon Schilele and Louise Bourgeois,How can drawing media support an investigation of this subject?

Both Egon Schiele and Louise Bourgeois drew a fair amount of human figure. In Louise’s case it was more about emotions and feelings, with  strong sexual notes in the images. In Egon’s  women figure, the drawings are mainly erotic and also show a lot of expression and emotions in their poses and facial expressions. My own concept came out as expression, feelings, emotions and sexuality like them but I focused in how these seems to appear differently as women age. My intention is to include all of those aspects in a beautiful image of a woman’s body entering the last cycle of her life..

 

Exercise 5.1 – Planning your project

Exercise 5.1 – Planning your project

  1. Write yourself a set of aims to follow on from our initial sentence (see below)
  2. Complete the method section with detail relevant to your preferred project
  3. Add some more specific points for reflection

Aim

To bring together your learning over the course by creating a final project and body of work that combines two or more strategies to explore some course themes in more depth

Method

  • Make initial visual enquiries about

What kind of image do I want to create?  What is the process/purpose I want to go through? How am I going to execute it? What is the concept for it?

  • Collect materials together by combining at least two of the strategies investigated in this course

I want to work on a bigger scale based on researches of Louise Borgeouis , who worked in panels, Egon Schilele who drew erotic drawings .Both drew a fair amount of women figure. I also want to use “collage” method learned in Part two and “The process” learned on part four

  • Create some studies and exploratory work investigating ( see on sketch Part five)
  • Make some drawings or series of drawing which will bring your own ideas to images

Reflection

What have you learned about drawing materials and their potential within a drawing practice? Reflect on your final body of work in your learning log. ( See on Assignment five final body of work)

My investigation 

Kintsugi is the Japanese art of fixing broken objects in a way that it looks better than the original piece before the breakage. Golden

 

I want to incorporate the concept of Kintsugi which fascinates me in how they transform a broken object into a better piece using and old, traditional and very precise technique.  I also want to apply this similar technique in my drawing exploration using  the concept of women ageing. I want to show that women might get “broken” for many reasons as they age and it is in these flaws that a new sort of beauty and strength arise.  I am take inspiration in the way Louise Borgeois depicted women figure with her washes of watercolour and the irregular lines. I also get inspired by Egon Schiele lines and use of space and mostly his erotic women’s drawing. I think the same can be applied to an ageing woman’s body which changes with time but it also can be seeing with eroticism . I hope I can put all these aspects together and develop my own unique image where I can implement some collage work and also using large scale drawing to be more risky in this new exploration through drawing media.

 

Assignment 4- sketches

These sketches were all done in A3 paper, they are purely expressive, a bit abstract I think. I used charcoal – one of my favourite material. Sometimes I splat some red paint or used Chinese ink. They were all spontaneous movements . My concept for these sketches is : Japanese folk music. I drew all of them while listening to very old Japanese folk songs. These song  are repetitive and for some people , very tedious. They are mostly about fishermen’s life, the sea and words that depict   everyday life in villages. I attempted to write a few words I understood. Although my spoken Japanese is quite fluent, I do not write much. I think the percussion in those songs really puts me in the mood for drawing. I moved around the paper with my whole body as I was dancing with my hands on paper, drawing movements that came with the flow of the songs . I kept a very limited palette as I really like the oriental style of using only black and red on white background.

This song is one of the Traditional folk songs and it brings me beautiful memories of the country side of Japan.

I also had a try on William Anastasi ” blind drawing” and these images bellow came up:

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And finally the ideas for Assignment four:

I decided to use some collage and mixed media to add movement and life to my piece

 

Assignment 4

Assignment four – The process

Blind Drawings, (2013) [user-generated contnt online] Creat. Anastasi, Willian , 23 May, 2013 at:

The Museum of Modern Art (2019) at: https://www.moma.org/collection/works/90658

I must say that this in this module EDM my greatest discoveries were : Louise Borgeois, Cy Twombly and William Anastasi and his “blind drawings”.

Artist’s statement – Assignment four

More and more abstract expressionism is bringing sometime strong out of me. The video of William Anastasi is quite an emotional one to me. It is intense, and my main thought was: For an artist, a visual artist, closing your eyes to what you are executing is ironically so “eyes opening” ! The concept of Anastasi of drawing while walking, or inside the train, or in big scale,   is one of the great discoveries I have made of drawing through this journey so far. I also learned a lot from  Louise Borgeois emotional drawings and the lose audacious drawings of Cy Twombly. What interests me most in these  artists is the courage to dare  open their wounds or urges and express themselves without concerns of  negative criticism. I want to have that courage to go out of my comfort zone of drawing detailed ,beautiful and realistic drawings to express myself more freely and say it out loud how I feel in them  without any concern if it rather  will be understood or not.  Through these artists I start finding out my passion for mark making inspired by different reasons. It could be by life events, inspirational people, feelings or simplify by just let it flow out of my mind and hands. My aim for this assignment is to explore more my ability of expressive drawing, finding the moment and ways to achieve some quality pieces. It feels very liberating and although in terms of drawing, the human figure is of great interest, I think by starting just freely explore more mark making will get to a way to interconnect both. I like the concept of mixed media, abstract drawing, collage and expressionism. This is what I want to experiment for Assignment 4, more than a finish piece, how I fell about the process.

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I really like how the drawing above came out. Among all the drawing expressive and spontaneous drawing I did, focusing on the process of “flow” and being inspired by some Traditional Japanese folk songs and my Dad’s memory, this particular one has the strong marks, colours and movements I wanted to achieve. Although it is abstract, it reminded me Japanese drums and the red lines it as if the drums sticks could live a mark on where it hits. I wanted to enhance this image working with some mixed media and collage. Again, I wanted to submerge myself in the process more than the outcome.

 

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Assignment 4 Relflection

The process was another learning journey. I still struggle with collage. I like to work with it but I find it hard to position images and make it too much or too little. I don’t know if I should overlap, cut, scribble. That is so many ways to use collage, it overwhelming me. It is a challenge for me and that’s why I wanted to include collage for Assignment four. I don’t know how the idea of including strings appeared but I had in mind the strings not glued or to close to the paper, but with some space in between  as I liked the effect of  line shadows reflection depending on where the light comes from. The process was pretty organic, cutting pieces of card board by hand without making them completely the same, glueing them with a certain space in between without measuring and tie up lose ends in the back. I think the organic part is also something that reminds me traditional Japan, drums, the fisher’s villages, crafted things. Tying the strings in the back and making them straight and stretched all around the frame was also very challenging. I kept doing it for days, including some images and excluding them, taking photos to review and making a final choice. I think it was a real “process” not focusing on the outcome but somehow I think the final piece is an interesting one.

From my Tutor Adam Thompso on report 3: Pointers for Assignment 4

  • Consider your subject matter for the next part and integrate personal themes and interests into how your approach the exercises 
  • Combine and continue to explore all the methods and approaches to mark-making you have tried so far
  • Reflect on this feedback on your blog with a summary of the key points

I am developing and becoming more confident in express my mark-making in various ways. It has been a very interesting journey in EDM and there are many themes that interest me, I still haven’t decided to stick with one.

Katia Chester Report 4 (1)

 

 

 

 

 

Exercise 4.3- Drawing and thinking/sketches

I first had in mind for this exercise telling a quick story about my family or the Japanese immigration in Brazil. I thought about simplify their or my Dad’s journey but I got lost after a few sketches. I couldn’t make it clear and yet not too long. The most vivid thing in my mind was then the death of my Dad, how I felt and how could I put it on paper to tell someone in a beautiful way because after all it was a peaceful pass.

Here are the sketches, starting from family story to sketches about my Dad.

Exercise 4.3 – Drawing and thinking

Method

  1. choose a story to tell to a friend, or just out loud to yourself. It might be a fairy story told to a child, an anecdote from work told to a partner, or a secret told to the mirror.
  2. Select drawing materials, based on your experiences of the course so far. Choose the scale and material substance of this drawing. You might like to explore materials borrowed from mapping diagrams, doodles or flowcharts, or you might like to dislocate the process from its usual materials and use something quite different. Remember make brief notes in your learning log about your choices.
  3. Tell the story and attempt to draw as you talk. Don’t worry about capturing all the detail; allow the natural ebb and flow of the language and images to operate together. For example, there  is no need to complete a part of the drawing once the narrative has moved on- just leave it incomplete.

 

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I have first created comic story on manila envelope with mix media ( collage, acrylic and markers)  based on the lyrics of the song from the singer Bjork, called  “Human Behaviour”. It took me time and effort to finish it . I did it slowly, worked on it for over a week and it was more an exercise for me to learn to take a step back, leave the work for a day or two and go back to take a look, continue, change or just finish it. This was not as proposed in the exercise: a natural flow, but I just felt like exploring something new.

Human Behaviour (1993) [user-generated content online] Creat. Bjorktv, 8th August 2010 at:

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The story of how I received the news on my Dad’s death was exactly as proposed in the method for this exercise. I just followed the flow. No planning, not much thinking, just the main memories of a day.

Reflection on exercise 4.3 – drawing and thinking

For this exercise I have chosen Graphic recording method. I have done a couple of graphic recordings for meeting in the school I work at and I found in it  the flow and visuals to tell a story the way I like to . With Bold lines and clear images, little details but only the essential information to engage the viewer. Black markers and tones of grey and a little red was the range to express my feelings in the right amount. I had sketched before but my final exercise is in A3 paper with better sequence of events. I didn’t worry much about proportion but to let it flow out of me, as I re told the story to myself out loud. Once again the only thing in my mind while doing Part four was the death of my dear Dad. The story goes through exactly the scenes I have in my mind: everything seemed to have happened in a split of second! The pain and lack of air I felt was exactly as described in my images.It was like I was bottled and couldn’t breath or hear anything.  I had no chance to go back home due to financial and logistics . At the end of the day, I had to accept it, give him my best thoughts and love and it didn’t take long for me to feel that he was ok. I have the feeling that he is back to his roots in Japan, with our ancestors. I feel sad but I feel comforted by thinking about it this way.

Questions from module on exercise 4.3

  • How do you feel about your drawing? I have been doing comics for fun since I was a little girl. I enjoy drawing stories, specially for children. For many years I wanted to be a children’s book illustrator. I have the ability to create characters and picture the place for them when I read a story. I never had the chance to do it professionally  as it is a very competitive field and I live in a part of the world where limits me to find publishers or ways to get into this kind of job. My true answer is, YES, I enjoy drawing stories, but more about the images than words.
  • What worked particularly well in your story? How I depict myself, my simple morning routine and the sudden change by a phone call.
  • How might you extend these features? If I was to draw a whole comic, I would draw more panels with details about how was the day before, how long it was the next 24hours after the sad news. How I told my kids and how we participate through the funeral ceremony via Skype. I have loads of more images to depict how much happened inside me in about 48hours.
  • How might you incorporate them in your future drawing? I have always done drawing with a quite extend level of details. It is my comfort zone in drawing. I want to be more expressive, a bit abstract. That is my challenge, I want to do less but with more intensity and it happens when I work more freely and lose details. I like the fact of shrink the whole stories and only a few images. That why the choice of Graphic recording.
  • Can you see any benefit of varying the pace of your work to include more spontaneous lines and marks? Yes, if I don’t take much time and try to simplify it is when my best marks come out! Maybe not in this specific exercise, but drawing in general , I tend to like my sketches more than final pieces.
  • When you look at your own sketchbooks, can you see a way to cut to the chase more effectively now? I am not sure yet. I struggle keeping up a sketch book, I like to just go for it but I understand the importance of giving my tries and possibilities before deciding for a final work. I realise that sometimes through many sketches things can be added or excluded and the change of perspective and ideas change.

 

Exercise 4.2 – Labour and time/ sketches

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At first I thought of doing a large scale portrait just on scribbling. I practise a couple but didn’t quite match what I want to achieve. I then decided to use Washi paper( Japanese paper) and did a large/long scale painting: rose petals rain, but it wasn’t what I really want. Finally the coffee stain idea felt just right and my 1metre portrait worked exactly the way I was expecting to.

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The cats above entitled : “Coffee Cats” was an exercise that happened very spontaneily . No planning, no much thinking. Each cat was traced once with pencil and outlined with chinese ink. I painted them over with coffee, letting it bleed out of the lines, let some drops overflow here and there.

Exercise 4.2 Labour and time

Method

  1. Research drawing methods that take time to use and appeal to you, for example hatching, shading, using small media to make big drawings, scale drawing, hyperrealism, etc.
  2. Choose a subject for your drawing that might benefit from having time spent in either of the two directions suggested above:
  • From the viewer’s perspective, for example, a minutely detailed drawing of a piece of discarded fruit peel might set up and interesting relationship. Equally, an eight-foot high drawing of a two-year-old child might shift its interpretation
  • For yourself. Choose something that you would like to spend time coaxing into being and thinking about. You might spend time creating a hyperrealistic portrait of someone you love, or carefully using a pin to scratch the face of a politician you don’t like. It may well be that the labour becomes the subject and you have simply decided to shade an entire sheet of lining paper with a ball point pen.

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Reflection on exercise 4.2 – Labour and time

My Dad passed away on December 5th, just the time I had started Part four- The process. I am in Malaysia and there was no time to go back for the funeral all the way in Brazil, everything happened so fast, my family had to make quick decisions and the only thing left for me to do was following the funeral ceremony via video call and grieve here, by myself. There wasn’t anything else I could think of doing for this project but pay a homage to my Dad. He loved his coffee, espresso, in small coffee cups (the way we serve in Brazil). He had it every morning before eating anything. The first thing in Brazil you offer when someone comes to your house is “um cafezinho” which literally means a short, small cup of coffee. It has always being like that with him after I was married and he came to visit my house. I last saw him in August 2018, when I went to see everyone after 3 years. We had coffee together, we didn’t speak much, he was 84years old and had lost 70% of his hearing. The day I start planning for this exercise I was home by myself and using coffee as a tool media was just right for this exercise. At first I did a big scale drawing in Japanese washi paper- since Dad was Japanese…. It was a scene from the funeral that got stuck in my mind. After the coffin was closed there was a rain of red rose petals falling over it. I did it in the scale of 1.60cm. His height. I liked but I needed more. Two days later, drinking coffee I decided that doing a portrait of him in big scale would fit : time and labour and also my “process” of grieving and reflection on his life and at the same time doing it with something that completes and comforts me: my art. It took me about 6 hours, with maybe two breaks for water and toilet. I was consumed by it. I did it on the flour, squatting, kneeling and laying down at times. My whole body ached for a few days later as if I had climbed a mountain carrying heavy luggage on my back. From tracing the features of his face, trying to depict wrinkles and marks, blending the right amount of coffee to achieve tonal range, it took time, thinking, movement and focus. The smell of coffee and effect on paper completed the whole experience with sadness, grief, peace and satisfaction.

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