Friday, January 29, 2016

Final Thoughts

There were many times in this class that were very enjoyable and great learning experiences. Two of my favorite were towards the end. My first favorite moment was when we began our one point and two point drawings. I was quickly able to grab the idea of how to apply one point and two points to my drawings but I could not get the hang of colored pencils. I tried to learn by looking up Youtube tutorials or by just going home and trying to figure it out on my own. Finally, my teacher was able to explain in an easy way that helped me color in an easier way that even looked better than before. The second favorite moment I have would be the watercolor unit. I've used watercolors before but not in such a professional way. We learned many techniques that I never even heard of before. Each one helped me make my paintings look more real. There were many times in this class that were entertaining but these two were my most memorable.

Work of Art that I am the most proud of

Throughout all of the fun and interesting art work that I created in this art class the Imaginative Self-Portrait is my all time favorite. I like how we were able to incorporate our own ideas into this piece. At the beginning of the project I wasn't really sure how to balance out the lights and darks in my art. As I went along I noticed how sometimes the light would over power the dark or the dark would over power the light. When that first happened I decided to look at previous kids portraits and I studied how they balanced out their colors. I then was able to use the knowledge that I gained from looking at other people's art to properly finish my own self-portrait. In the end I was able to learn how to balance out my light and dark values and it is some what easier now.

Watercolor Techniques

To experiment with a variety of watercolor techniques;
To make connections between experimenting with watercolor techniques learned to creating your own landscape watercolor.

We were taught many concepts while doing the watercolor practice techniques but there were a couple that stood out to me. The first one is control over the light values. I learned that to keep the paint on the lighter side you can dilute it with water or you could just leave the space white. To make it darker you would just add more paint. I also learned many different brush techniques. Learning them helped me with the quality of my picture. They would help with adding a texturized look to the painting. I think that learning all of these brush techniques helped me improve my watercolor painting skills and I hope to keep improving. The concepts that we learned are some that I hope to keep using in the future.

Monday, January 25, 2016

Perspective Drawing Strategies

To understand what perspective means in Art;
To learn and apply various perspective strategies through the creation of drawings.

 Two-Point Drawing

One-Point Drawing


The most challenging part of these assignment was actually using the colored pencils. I didn’t really know how to blend them and whenever I used them it just looked like a mess. I was able to improve by seeking out answers from my teacher and looking tutorials online. It was also difficult aligning objects in the picture while keeping them in proportion. Using a ruler helped me understand the flow of the lines in the picture better and showed me how they connected.

I learned how to make my landscape drawings more realistic. By using the one and two point system, it actually makes my drawings feel more three dimensional. When I learned the one and two point system in drawing it showed me how to make my lines more precise. When your lines are more precise the picture looks more realistic. Lastly, when I first started on this project I didn’t know how to use colored pencils. I was able to get help from my teacher who gave me a clearer understanding on how to blend the pencils to make a solid and smoother color.

Thursday, January 7, 2016

Watercolor History

To become familiar with the history of watercolor;
To become familiar with various watercolor artists throughout time;
To make connections between watercolor purposes and techniques from long ago to its uses today.

Watercolor began spreading during the 1400s in the west. There are cave drawings made with watercolor, but this was where it began to grow. Artists had to make their own paints and were very private about their ways of making it. In the 1800s, shops were popping up in Europe with the necessary tools for painting. They now sold the paints already made. Over time people were making the watercolor paint into little cakes and adjusting the formulas making it easier to produce and sell. In 1856, Louis Prang contracted with the American Crayon Company to manufacture and sell his watercolor paints. Now anyone can buy watercolors and paint whenever.

Albrecht Durer was one of the first “modern” watercolor master. Most of his works include great amounts of detail. He worked directly from nature and painted many animals with watercolor. In the picture I included, you can see the immense amount of detail he was able to achieve with watercolors. Anthony Van Dyck was another first “watercolor master.” He began watercolor painting in 1632 and all the way to 1641. He was known for painting England’s landscapes with an interesting technique. He used is paper as a medium for his paintings. He used translucent watercolor washes to make the paper look like watercolor.
Albrecht Durer, 'Wing of a Roller' 1512

Anthony Van Dyck, 'Landscape'  1632
Anthony Van Dyck, 'Landscape' 1632

A man named Nicolas Poussin worked from a series of wash studies. He painted them directly from nature and only used two colors in most of his paintings. He was able to combine them with the range of light and dark tones to make his works look like a full palette. Rembrandt is a very famous name from the Netherlands who has produced many different paintings. He never really worked in watercolor but some of his sketches used an interesting wash on paper technique. In hundreds of his sketches he used a brown bistre and/or sepia wash which made them look like they had some color or light values in them. 

Nicolas Poussin  'Landscape with Trees and Tower'
Nicolas Poussin ‘Landscape with Trees and Tower’

Rembrandt van Rijn 'Young Woman Sleeping' The British Museum
Rembrandt van Rijn ‘Young Woman Sleeping’ The British Museum

Watercolor gets its name from the way it is made. It is made of a pigment dissolved in water and bound together by a colloid agent. When painted with, it leaves a luminescent effect look on the paper. When it first came around, artists usually made it themselves, but the could buy it in liquid form. Over the next few centuries the way watercolor paints were made changed. Soon after the time when artists would make the paint themselves, a man named William Reeves made the paint in a little cake form so it was easy to sell. In the 1830s, watercolors could now be purchased moist in porcelain pans. An even better version of the moist paint was when it came in metal tubes created by Winsor & Newton in 1841. The tools for watercoloring are just as important as the paint. The Asiatic marten paintbrush was used because it was able to hold more paint. In the nineteenth century different tools became more common. They used things like sandpaper, scratchers, and even things like fingernails to add value to the pictures. 

"History of Watercolor: Whereforth It Came -"WatercolorPaintingcom. N.p., 14 Sept. 2015. Web. 07 Jan. 2016.

"History-Overview." Watercolor Watercolor Painting Watermedia History Contemporary Exhibitions. N.p., n.d. Web. 07 Jan. 2016.

"Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History." Watercolor Painting in Britain, 1750–1850. N.p., n.d. Web. 07 Jan. 2016.

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Li Guolin, Unsung Hero

When we started the project, I wanted to choose a person who was not well known and who wasn’t on the website. I remembered an article I read online that talked about the 2008 earthquake in China. I really wasn’t expecting to find such a sad and interesting story, but once I found it I knew I needed to share it. Li Guolin is a selfless hero who sacrificed something so dear to him to save others in need around him. Li Guolin was a police officer at the time of the earthquake. After the initial quake, he immediately rushed down to see if his son was okay. When he arrived at the school, he saw that the once five story building was reduced to three. He frantically looked for his son and found him buried deep in a pile of rubble. While he was digging through the rubble, many injured civilians came begging for his help. He didn’t want to leave his son but his job was to help the people. He began shouting orders to people, trying to get them to save as many people as they could. By the time he got back to his son it was too late. Though he couldn’t save his son, he was able to rescue thirty other students while he was there.   For my painting, I decided to take a more literal route. I painted Guolin holding his son in his arms looking very upset. There are some parts of the picture that are exaggerated, like the dark figures in the corners which represent the people begging for help. When you are in distress I imagine that anybody around could be kind of monstrous. Especially if they are bruised and bloody and also screaming about someone they are worried for. He remained strong for the people around him and was able to leave his son to shout directions on how to save as many people as they could. I wanted to show his less powerful side so I painted a sad scene that shows the breaking point of a man. To make the work represent my response to the process I added my own style to the painting. I made the brush strokes very choppy and mixed to show a disastrous effect. I knew a lot of the heroes that were picked had such happy stories so I wanted to show a tragic one with an ending the will give you mixed feelings. In my art, you see more of the tragic side but that was the point. I thought that since most of the unsung heroes on the website had impacts that didn’t cost them something to extreme, I would bring something new to the table. This project has made me think about the world a little different. Since I live in America, the world I live in is more of give a little and take a lot. Many of the people here are more focused on every man for himself and there is nothing really to bring us all together. During and after the huge earthquake, many people went out of their way to help each other. It was a devastating disaster and many lives were lost. This man was one of those people who gave up something he loved to help others who he probably didn’t know. I now have more sympathy for the world around me. Though there is still a lot of difficulties with everyone now and then I know there are at least some genuine good hearted people out there. 

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Perspective Strategies

The art definition of perspective is a bit different from the original meaning. The Latin roots suggest that it means to look through or look at, but the art definition means creating an appearance of depth. Adding depth to a picture helps it look more three dimensional. You can show the depth of art by moving the horizon line or vanishing point. The horizon line is where the landscape ends and by moving it up or down you can show different areas of the land. The vanishing point is where the eye is drawn to. That is where everything in the piece of art seems to be emerging from. Orthogonal lines are straight diagonal lines that connect points around the vanishing point. Transversal lines are they lines that are parallel to the horizon line. They form the nearest and furthest lines of the rectangle in a picture.

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