Archive for journal
I love doodling with gold and silver ink pens, somehow the drawing just grows and grows, and I get more and more carried away! This is good in a sense as it is free expression. It must be said though that it doesn’t do to be too free. I feel there must always be a raison d’etre: an underlying reason behind what I do and that work like this must be balanced by more disciplined work: more control. As my work progresses I have come to realise that my concerns reveal a dichotomy: control and automatism.
Media used; silver and gold ink gel pens, inks, acrylics
Links for my other surfaces ;
Continuing page 17 in my Altered art book, I mentioned before that one mans junk is sometimes another man’s treasure. But how about discarded things coming together, or being delibrately brought together to make art? Connections being made, alliances, partnerships formed to communicate a message?
One person who does this is New Zealand artist Dale Copeland. I have always admired her assemblages. She takes the found objects, marries them and makes them sing! Her pieces are quirky, witty, thought provoking: sometimes they are like little poems or bits of prose. They also leave space for you to provide the punchline.
I am always affected by looking at these assemblages. There is always a response to these pieces: they are communicative, sensitive and clever and instinctual.
American artist and sculpter Joseph Cornell (b. 1903 -1972) created boxed assemblages from bric a brac. A surrealist at heart, his assemblages are bits of beautiful nostalgia found in thrift shops: pieces of the past affecting the present (or that moment anyway).
The term ‘assemblage artist’ was first coined by the French artist Jean Dubuffet as a way of defining found objects into 3D structures. Others that took this up were Robert Rauchenberg, Kurt Schwitters and Man Ray.
It seems odd to think that the things we disgard or throw away could be valuable after all. Not in a monetary way, but perhaps in a spiritual way, the way they can teach us something about ourselves. Sometimes by juxtaposing certain components, something is unlocked, like using the right combination on a safe.
This is the cover of one of my Printmaking journals. As you can see, I really went to town on this! The techniques used are collage, layering and drawing.
I am very fond of silver and gold pens and can doodle for hours with these. Mark making was done with whatever was at hand. Layers were build up with tissue paper. I love building layers with these, as the colours show through each other. I use PVA glue as it dries clear and provides a nice surface for working on.
The very first thing I do when I get a journal is decorate. It is a beginning. Funnily enough though, if its a journal for writing in, I never write on the first page! I have been known to start at the back. It’s as if I don’t want to spoil the first page! How crazy is that?
This is a life drawing journal I have decorated. The first thing I do when I get a new journal is embellish it! This one is painted with acrylic paint and felt tips.
The first journal I ever ‘decorated’ was this one: –
All I did was stick two pieces of plaster over it! I can’t remember why I did that though…..
Eureka! I have found it! Again. It was hidden in a box of papers in the cellar. I have turned the house upside down for it. Every time I find it and manage to do a couple of pages, it disappears again. This time, I actually started 2 more books last week. The first one, I soon started to realise wasn’t going to work as it wasn’t descriptive enough and the narrative was too ordinary. The next one may or may not have turned out alright, but the pages were very thin for a hardback book.
So I have my old ‘Five Gates of Hell’ back now. Already, I can see where I’ve gone wrong and ways of rectifying it. One of the mistakes on the first couple of pages is that each page is a different colour and texture. Although the narrative or the ‘story’ follows on logically (for me), the pages come across as separate entities. Plus, a lot of information is being crammed into a relatively small space. To rectify this, each page must consist of 2, giving a bigger page to work on.
I have been through the first dozen or so pages, marking down the sentences I am going to use. Another mistake is to stick these sentences onto the page, before the background is done. I have been writing in a journal which sentences I want to print out and which page they appear on. I am using different fonts in various sizes. This is yet another reason for preparing the background first. When this is down, the text can be printed in a complimentary colour and appropriate size. Very happy for now…but let’s see if it lasts or the book disappears yet again.