ARTS1311 Reading #1

What is the purpose of a designer, do they always work for a stakeholder?

  1. To fulfill a need involving either technology or tradition in a “definite situation.” (“Good Design: What is it for?”) A designer works “through and for other people.” (“Is a Designer an Artist?”) Do they always work for a stakeholder? From what I have read from the articles and what I have seen in real life, I would say for the most part.
  2. Is the artist always a self-expressive narcissist?

Norman Potter describes design as a “humbler” way to serve man than art. That is because design can be for things like serve as a more tangible function that art, and artists are more certain about themselves and if their personal expression is in their art and if others enjoy their art. That being said, I think that it may seem that artists are more self-serving. However, this may not always be the case, for there are artists who make art to impart certain messages to the world, to speak for those who cannot, try to right wrongs, etc.

  1. Can the designer/artist exist?

Most pf the articles seem to point to the notion of them being separate things that work in a similar way and can sometimes work together. But I think the authors of the articles would find it a bit of a stretch to say that artists are designers and designers are artists.

Personal Reflection

  1. What is your personal view of the difference between the designer and the artist?

A designer is more specialized than an artist and more work for companies, whereas artists can work for companies but a lot of times for work for themselves or strive to work for themselves.

  1. Which are you, why?

I am an artist because I do not know much about design and for me, the term “artist” feels more liberating than designer. I feel like since its tasks may be a little less specific and a little broader, which may in certain ways be a bad thing, I feel like the possibilities for me are endless. Also, and I may be wrong, but I kind of associate more neat works for designers like logos. That it not my style—I like a lot of detail and chaos.

ARTS1311 Reading #2

  1. Based upon the reading how are priorities set for specific projects? Or in other words, what is it that determines the guidelines for given projects?

Priorities include what you define as success, as versed Superflex’s response to Asa Nacking’s question as to whether or not the Biogas project was a success, “[there are] several aspects that may be more or less successful.” In other words, you need to define the certain aspect, that if achieved, would indicate success for a particular project. For Superflex, it was the fact that their project enabled dialogue. Another priority can be whether the work is to be specific or broad. Specific or broad when it comes to disciples (should the project be exclusive to one field, art for example, or crossover different disciplines such as, what Maria Lind in her article, “What If?” calls “hybrids,” which are projects that can intertwine art, politics, design or film?)

  1. How does the artist/ designer approach decision making differently or do they?

Artists and Graphic Designers share similar questions that influence their decisions Both question “genre boundaries and subject areas” in their processes (“What If?” by Maria Lind). Both use “methods or tools” in their decision-making. Graphic designers are “liberated from the weight of art history,” as Mathias Augustyniak puts it in the “Royal College of Art discussion,” “and therefore able to approach the notion of art with a degree of nonchalance.” “Nonchalance” may be baffling to an artist as a way of approaching art. Then perhaps it can follow that artists may approach their craft and therefore make decisions from a more abstract perspective, while designers may be coming a little more from a place of technicality. Augustyniak also asserts that “artists seem to insist on positioning themselves outside of the real world in this exclusive space called art,” conversely inferring that designers may be more likely or willing to work with several different disciplines outside of their specific field when making decisions on projects.

Personal Reflection

  1. How do you make decisions? Are they based upon anything substantial? Why or why not?

I make artistic decisions based on what effect that I want to piece to have/what kind of emotion I want it to evoke. I also make decisions as to where I want the eye to first land, and how I can make that so. This is because my high school art teacher made me aware of the eye of the viewer and how if you do certain things, you can change where the eye first goes to, which is arguably the most important information, which intertwines with what effect it has and eventually the certain emotion that I want a piece to provoke.

  1. How do you know when something is “good” or working?

When I can look at the piece as a whole after getting a new perspective from having left it alone for a while and my first impression is the certain effect or emotion that I originally wanted to create. If my eye goes where I want them to go. If there is a sense of “completeness.” If it successfully communicates the elusive, abstract thing that was inside me when creating it. If I took any chances. It is important to me that I at least took one risk in making the piece and that will give me some satisfaction, because I know that that is the only way I will grow and I want to grow. I will possibly feel more successful if the risk actually turned out well in a dynamic way than if it ruined the piece, so that is a way of measuring the success of the piece. If I jumped and the net caught me. But I am concerned with whether or not I took a risk before concerning myself with whether or not it turned out like how I envisioned or hoped.

  1. How do you rework projects to make them work?

I usually just work with whatever went wrong in the piece and figure out what I can do with it to make it look intentional in the piece. It depends on the medium. If I am working with pencil, I’ll consider if I can just erase it without it being too noticeable. If I’m working with paint, I shall do what my high school art teacher said to do and paint over it! If it is a pen mark or sharpie, something non-erasable/non-cover-up-able, I usually do the same thing three times to make it look intentional and see if it contributed well to the piece.

ARTS1311_100 Solutions

My object is a simple, yet classic-looking black mug. I initially wanted something unsuspecting, so that it would have the maximum impact when I placed it in odd scenarios. I later also wanted something that was breakable so that I could have the dynamic of breaking my object near the end of the photos, so as to make art out of its broken pieces

1. In this photo, the mug is acting as a mirror, reflecting my smile in particular in its  warped way. I love the angle, all the variations of black and white, but for the touches of color in my reflection. I love the effect the light is having on the whole scene.
2.  I find the idea of accidentally stepping on a mug absurd. Also, this picture is a bit illusionary in that the placement makes it seem as if the tree in the background is coming out of the mug, out of my shoe.

3. I like how intimate this picture is on the solitary buried mug. It is mysterious because it makes a viewer wonder why a newer looking mug would be buried. Also, mugs are not often associated with the outside world. 

4. This photo has stark variations of black and white. It emits a certain mood. It has intensity. There is a certain dynamic of placing the mug right beneath a light source in a darker room.

5. The mug is personified as it sits on a chair watching the sunset. I must add I am fascinated with the shapes of the power lines and how they contribute ti the whole photo. 

6. I wanted to capture something as mighty as the sun with something as humble and mundane as the mug, as if the mug is scooping up the sun or the sun is peaking out from it. Almost everything in this photo is a silhouette. 

7. I do not often see photos of spills, so I wanted to explore that. I love how the water has a reflection of what is above the mug and table, which is the trees, so the viewer feels as if he or she were looking down and up simultaneously.

8. The mug almost becomes one of the several shadows in this photo. I love the tension of the sharp corners leading to something with soft shapes. 

9. This picture is meant to depict pain. “Shattered” ideals if you will. Which conceptually leads to the next and last photo. 

10. This photo is meant to represent how people who are broken can pick up their pieces and heal by making something beautiful out of them, possibly something that could help others in their journeys.

Remaining 90 images: https://stedwards.app.box.com/folder/17481845048?sortColumn=date&sortDirection=desc&pageSize=20&pageNumber=4

Prototype 2 (Inkjet)

If the first couple of images were swapped with any other pair, let us say the ones on pages four and five, the logic of my sequence would break down because it is meant to start from the perspective of the first character, the “girl who is seeing the city for the first time.” If the viewer would notice, all the poems are told from third-person. All except the first poem, which is told from first-person. Therefore, conceptually, the first character is observing all the other characters as she roams the city for the first time and takes in the sights.

I have changed the font from the automatic one to Bodoni 72, because I wanted something simple and not too flashy, as the book is supposed to have a pensive mood, as if the viewer/reader were wondering through the city themselves, simultaneously wondering through their thoughts, and Bodoni 72 fit that character. I moved the pages numbers a little more inward, because they were so close to the edge of the pages that I almost chopped them off when trimming.

Inkjet Prototype- Front CoverInkjet Prototype- Pages 2,3Inkjet Prototype- Pages 4,5Inkjet Prototype- Pages 6,7Inkjet Prototype- Pages 8,9Inkjet Prototype- Pages 10,11Inkjet Prototype- Pages 12,13Inkjet Prototype- Pages 14, 15Inkjet Prototype- Pages 16, 17Inkjet Prototype- Pages 18-19Inkjet Prototype- Pages 20, 21Inkjet Prototype- Pages 22, 23Inkjet Prototype- Pages 24, 25Inkjet Prototype- Pages 26, 27Inkjet prototype- Back Cover

Blog Post #12

Part 1: Reflection on this semester and course. Feel free to write any and all comments here. We want and appreciate your feedback (both positive and critical).

I genuinely really enjoyed this class. I learn better from lectures rather than group work, and this class was mainly lectures. I thought that the study tips/organizing/prioritizing stuff in the beginning of the year was so helpful, practical, and relevant to real life. They were things that you could quickly and easily implement that would have a big impact on you being on top of your assignments and other obligations (and less stressed. Any less stress helps). I like the more relaxed yet effective teaching style. The only thing I have to complain about is the cussing. I’m all for joking and being real, but it is just not professional. Plus, it is inconsiderate for people who do not cuss because it may make them feel uncomfortable. I like that there are several professors so you get several perspectives. This class, the students and professors had a sense of humor about themselves and about life in general and I could appreciate that, especially at the end of a school day. A wide array of fascinating information was presented. I love how we not only learned about our own fields, but also those of our arts peers. Making it open for questions after each lecture was just easy access to a wealth of experience and knowledge. I found it highly encouraging with the guest speakers coming in and breaking down how to have the careers we want. It helped to put a face to the career, because before this class, it could be a little overwhelming for students as a whole to be taught how to be successful in your chosen field without humanity and personal advice and stories to back it up. It almost felt like you were going into that industry alone, like feeling your way around in the dark. But now the daunting, abstract road to success is now looking real and attainable.

Sequence- Prototype (Laser)

Cover PagePages 2-3Pages 4-5Pages 6-7Pages 8-9Pages 10-11Pages 12-13Page 14-15Pages 16-17Pages 18-19Page 20- 21Pages 22-23Pages 24- 25Pages 26- 27Back CoverSo some progress, in terms of the content. I did not have much problems with printing, the instructions were pretty straightforward, especially compared to the previous printing instructions. I completed a couple of more poems; now, I only have one more to complete. I did half of the drawings (to be made into collages) and inserted those into the prototype. I still need to figure out how to scan them and insert them into Photoshop and remove the background of the drawing (I believe the instructions are somewhere in my notes). Also, I recently decided that I want the front and back cover to be a solid black, with a white text box for the title in black letters. I will also have to figure out that. I still have much more to do, but I feel I am making progress in the concept, the content, and the technical ability. I feel it’s coming together.

Blog Post 11

Part 1:

Bill Kennedy is mainly a photographer. He sees his craft as research. He said this research has two branches, pure research and what he calls “applied research.” Pure research is more straight foreword photographs that solely capture information about certain people or places, which he had to do when he had more journalism type jobs. Applied research, which is something he is way more interested in nowadays, has to do with playing around with photographs to capture your individual perspective and artistic viewpoint. He does this by taking photographs of simple, everyday objects and abstracts them heavily beyond recognition through Photoshop.

As an artist with a passion for vibrant color, I was fascinated by his work. It’s remarkable to think that his pieces are photographs of objects or at least were originally, because they look like abstract landscapes. With the shapes and colors, they almost look like paintings. His tampering with the “temperature” of the photos in Photoshop actually does make the viewer feel cold or warm. As a poet and lyricist, I was also fascinated by the titles. Some artists just slap on a title that simply describes what is depicted and some even choose to leave their works untitled. But Kennedy’s titles are lyrical and thought-provoking. They further the viewer’s imagination and allow it to run wild in the piece. It welcomes the viewer to open up his or her imagination and make their own images and ideas as to what the shapes are, almost like naming the figures of clouds on a summer afternoon.  Some of his titles that come to mind are “Winter Midnight” and “The sun and rain and cabin window.”

Hollis Hammonds creates detailed pen drawings and art installations that can be quite massive. She has a variety of projects that range from an attempt to draw all the objects from her home like the artist, Elise Engler, in her piece “Everything I Own,” (she said she “only” made it up to 200) to a variety of pieces that study storms and weather, to detailed collages, which include what she calls asteroids, or floating balls of a multitude of objects, to narrative combinations of image and text of adventures of her 5-year-old “adorable” self. hating consumerism

I feel something distinctively healing in her work. When I look at her works, I feel almost relieved. She has briefly shared with our class her experiences with depression, breakups, and during her presentation, deaths and her house burning down. I feel like the common focus on chaos in her works is all of those conflicting thoughts and emotions from those events coming out. When I look at her work, I feel relived because I feel as if she had purged those tornados of thoughts and surges of emotion by getting them out of her system and into the material world for her to look at. I feel personal relief what I look at her work, because I use art in the same way. There is something almost empowering of capturing all the chaos that is vague and abstract in your soul and bringing it all out of you and in front of you for you to look at objectively. I feel relieved when I look at it, like the relief you feel after you cry after a period of increasing tension, throwing up after a period of bodily discomfort, the quiet after a storm. My favorite work of hers is “House on Fire.” The flickering lights in the background makes for mesmerizing dark beauty. I was also fascinated with her piece titled “Memory” which depicts the concept of how when someone dies, you gather all the superficial objects that belongs to them.

Alex Robinson does minimalistic art, that seeks to find the something in the “nothingness.” It is a play on perception. She created works like these, which felt like her, but then her “world collapsed” when she had kids. She then created less and created more colorful pieces. She is now able to return to the work that feels more like her, which is the more simplistic side of art. I thought it was interesting how she took pictures of her empty apartment, to study “the light and sensitivity of the space.”

I did not care too much for her work. I can respect her as a fellow artist, but I just do not resonate with simplistic art. I more resonate with the chaos and detail of Hollis’s work and the colors and abstraction of Kennedy’s work.

Tammy Ruben is mainly a 3-dimentional artist. She plays with senses, color, texture. She makes her objects a smaller size because of wanting to bring people in, rather than like giant murals where people must draw back. She wants people to get closer, but not to the point of being able to touch it. She wants to show through the sensation of wanting to touch her works but can’t how we as humans have all these desires and we pursue them but we never fully satisfy our longing.

It could be that it was my last class before supper or the colors and shininess of the objects, but I was not surprised when she said that some of her viewers have commented that they want to eat or lick her works. Her objects looked like sugary treats, like cupcakes and candy. My favorite was the piece of the Ku Klux Klan hats with eyeholes. The hats were so visually interesting in that they were blue and bedazzled. I loved her concept that the hats look innocent and “almost adorable” as she put it when they are separate, but become ominous when they come together.

Joe Vitone is a photographer and self-proclaimed “cowboy artist.” In his presentation he shared his photographs specifically form his time in Valentine, Texas. He called his collection of photographs “Valentine and Beyond,” which I find fitting because it not only captures pictures of people and places in Valentine but also the history and stories of those people and places. He shared several of those stories with us, including the individual stories of the wife and daughter of a rancher. His fascination with animals showed up in several of his pictures, including the ones that depict what he calls the “cowpocalype,” or the process of branding and castrating of cattle.

I noted during his presentation that a lot of his photographs are in black and white. I think several of his photographs are black and white so the viewer can see the action taking place more. It is less something to please to eye, but more a part of a story that the viewer wonders about.

Part 2:

I am an ambitious person so I have several goals. Aside from becoming an art teacher, I want to be a singer in my Christian rock band, Tears of the Sun, I want to be a fashion designer, a free-lance artist. I am taking small, tangible steps towards those dreams. For the band, we do not have all the instruments yet, but every day I practice my singing. I Facebook message my favorite singers, asking them advice for vocal performance, and some of them have actually replied back. Apparently, several of them have credited the same DVD. I ordered this DVD yesterday actually. I created a YouTube channel last week and I will upload videos of just me singing so I could gain some kind of a built-in audience for when we make audios with the instruments. I made an Etsy shop for my fashion line, Lunaresque, and I have many designs already, now I need to actually create the pieces. I saved up for a sewing machine which I still need to learn how to use. As for free-lance artist, I am trying to get into the habit of making art on a more regular basis. I plan on going to all the art shows I am able to and I think in the VISU-1100 class, we are going to make our own websites of our work. I already have a Facebook page for my artwork. I think I will improve just by doing those things on a regular basis, but as for the next five years I guess try to at least have one album out, have some shows under our belt. Have my online Etsy shop for my fashion up and running.

Sequence Thumbnails

Thumbnails 1Thumbnails 2The sequence of my book involves a pattern. It is organized by the format: photo, photo, collage, poem. The two photos are followed by a collage comprised of those photos to illustrate the process of abstraction, how collages are made of complete media that is taken apart and then reconstructed into something new. The collages are integrated with drawings of different characters. These characters are the topics of the poems. These characters are all people that you typically find in a city, such as a foreigner who sees the city as both chaos and opportunity for his family, a homeless person, etc. All these poems tell of how each character is interacting with the city. The book opens with the first character, a young woman who is from a small town and is exploring the city for the first time and is mesmerized. Her poem is the first and the only one told in first-person. Throughout the book, all the other characters are being introduced in third-person. This is because the book is slightly told from the young woman’s point of view, as she is observing all that is going on around her. She comes back in the last two pages, which comprise one big drawing depicting a scene in the city that includes all the previously introduced characters. This is to convey the idea that everyone has a story and that all of our stories work together.