Thursday, May 4, 2017

Final Project Reflection

My artwork consists of two paintings; one objective painting of a landscape I have seen many times, and one subjective painting of the emotional response triggered by experiencing that landscape. The landscape uses a wide range of color but contains primarily blue. The composition of the piece follows the rule of thirds (slightly) horizontally as the sky and sunset fill roughly the top third of the bristol page. There is light coming from the right side of the page, while the viewer doesn't see the actual sun in the sunset, it is clear that the sun is setting from the right and the light is traveling toward the other side of the page. The light and colors in the sky reflect in the water, and the two are only broken up by a very small strip of land.
The second piece is my attempt at a visual representation of how I feel when in that environment, as MirĂ³ experimented with in his career. The place in my first work is very special to me and I have countless pleasant memories surrounding that area, so all of my emotions are positive when I look the landscape. The work itself is a blue background that is split in half by two different tones of blue. I use few other colors in the work, aside from white, pink, and yellow. The white, wavy lines and dots around them follow no pattern but are meant to give a calming and peaceful effect, while the pink waves add an element of excitement and passion. Finally the yellow stars, which are actually the shape of a compass rose (a closely associated symbol of being at sea), represent specific memories or influences stemming from my experiences that are most important to me. Not only are they the "bright spots" but they have helped direct me, as a compass would help direct someone. On the right side of the page I painted a flag on a flag pole that also ties in an icon from the boats that I work on every day, and it represents the pride I feel when reflecting on where I grew up.
One thing I will be able to use from this class is the level of analysis that we reached in class. Instead of just flipping through a magazine and skipping the advertisements I will have a deeper understanding of what the people who created the ad were trying to convey and how they hoped consumers would react to the ad. Furthermore, even in movies and tv shows you can see compositional elements we talked about in class that I know have a more in depth meaning and purpose than to provide a visually appealing picture. Overall, I enjoyed the class and the projects we did. I found class discussions to be very constructive and positive and that helped me feel more comfortable in the work I made.

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Art Event II

The second art event I attended was the student show, on April 20. I found this event more inviting and intriguing as the works were made to reflect our current world, and not a period in history. It was also extremely interesting to examine each work, knowing that it was done by a student. Being in a very similar position as an artist makes it much more exciting to question a work and potentially find a way in which it connects both people. I was surprised to see pieces from people I have met before, and enjoyed watching them receive recognition for their work. The community in the art gallery itself was extremely warm and supportive of the students and their work. My favorite piece in this gallery was a pair of jeans that a student had decorated to reflect their motives and beliefs. I was drawn to this piece because it reminded me of a camp I attended a long time ago one summer at the Rhode Island School of Design, where our only task was to make a garment out of anything but normal clothing fabric. We weren't allowed to use cotton, jersey, silk, leather or anything similar. I related to this piece because it elicits a similar message; that clothes have the ability to be much more than something we put on ourselves every day to stay warm or protect from the weather. I definitely believe that clothes send a message of what kind of person you are, from your favorite colors to what you value most. I think that this student takes a timeless clothing item, blue jeans, and manipulates it to be a social statement about a very specific moment in time, right now.

Art Event Reflection

I attended a gallery opening, an exhibition of ancient Greek pottery, on March 23. This was the first art event I attended and I was pleasantly surprised with the knowledge that was presented during the talk. Jenna McKinley, the woman who arranged for the pieces to come to Loyola was clearly passionate about each piece and its history, and I particularly enjoyed that she mentioned what the pieces would have been used for originally as that says a lot about how they are created and how they are, or aren't, preserved. I was shocked by the details, that would have definitely required a lot of time and attention, on every single piece in the exhibit. A piece that would have been used as a cup was much more ornate than a cup we would use today. Because each piece had a practical use, it says a lot about the effort put into every day tasks and objects, and what people who lived in the time of this pottery would have been like. The practicality of a water jug, and the specific and beautiful decorations make for an intriguing combination. My favorite piece in the exhibit was a water jug that was black clay with red in the middle and portrayed a very detailed scene that included both people and animals. In one place at the lip of the jug, it had clearly been broken by being dropped or hit, so while it is an exquisite testament to what potters of the time could do, it was fully utilized as an every day object. Today, such a piece would be put on display and never used for such a task. Jenna's speech also included the more modern history of the pieces and how some of them may have been illegitimately obtained because of their great value. I found it very interesting and even more special that the pieces still hold great value today even after being used and in some cases, broken.