A Richardson Art I Portfolio

My goals for this semester were simply laid out on my goal card. Get more sleep, focus on math and art, and think "out of the frame {box}".

Observational Drawing Unit

Pretests: Self-portrait, hand, and hallway perspective drawing

Looking back at all of these, I can honestly say I've improved at ton since then. These old drawings mean a lot to me, because you can really see my issues with proportion and perspective. I have since learned things that I thought I already knew, like the proportions of the eyes in comparison to the rest of the face, how to draw things (fingers) in perspective, and how to draw in one and two point perspective, which would have helped out when drawing the hallway.

Gesture Drawing: A gesture drawing is a quickly drawn sketch of nothing more than a scene/character's action, mood, or feeling.

My gesture drawings, while far from impressive LOOKING managed to capture what, in essence, a gesture drawing is meant to be. From this exercise I learned to use many lines drawn quickly to emphasize actions.

Contour Drawing: A drawing made by sketching the contour, or outline, of a subject, usually using a couple (or sometimes one) lines.

This was the first contour line drawing I drew. It is a sneaker, and it was made up of only 3 lines. I scumbled lines to add depth and texture.
For this assignment, we drew our hands in one line, blindly (looking at our hands, not at the piece). You can see that this was my 6th attempt, and it still looked funny.
These are some quick blind contour drawings of a flower (left) a vase (middle row) and an alarm clock (right). Since you can't look at what you're drawing, it's hard not to draw over previous sketches. Oops!
This was our final assignment in contour drawing. We drew animal bones in black wax crayon, and then added depth and shadows with water soluble graphite afterward. Below is another example of the water soluble graphite.

Value: How light or dark something is.

Chiaroscuro: Contrast of light and dark, and how light falls on a subject.

Value Scale: A study in the values between light and dark.

Form: A three dimensional shape. Can be real or illusional (drawings, paintings, etc).

We drew forms in chiaroscuro, from a variety of light sources. Cones were the trickiest, as well as the cylinder lying flat.

Perspective Drawing: To draw a three dimensional object on a two dimensional surface so that height,width, depth, and juxtaposition are shown.

These are perspective drawings. The one on the left is a one point perspective drawing, which means everything goes to one point, the "vanishing" point. The drawing on the left is a two point perspective drawing, meaning everything goes to TWO vanishing points.
To do this project, we drew drawing mannequins, and shaded them from the light sources we saw.

Puppet Show 2016

Working on the puppet show was honestly amazing. The show, a story of peace and unity straight from South Africa, combined multiple storylines, both human and animal. Beyond that, being a part of the artistry behind the impressive masks and costumes was mind-blowing, especially knowing how many volunteer hours (and how much love!) went into the production. My class (3rd period) created penguin puppets, and worked on smaller hand puppets.

DOnovan Teaches us

Adding Support


The penguin dance!

Our last day!

Cast Photo

The final product - the cast becomes the characters

Surrealism and Symbolism Unit

Surrealism: A 20th century art movement dedicated to utilizing techniques such as dream imagery and juxtaposition to create visual and literary pieces that illustrated the free and/or unconscious mind.

Surreal Personal Symbolism Digital Collages

Technique Collage- Our first digital collages were to practice using both digital collage as a media, and surreal art techniques as an outlet. We selected images, and then put them into powerpoint slides using the "remove background" setting to cut the pictures out digitally. I also mirrored the woman's profile, filtered the colors on the individual pictures, and added a glow to the moon. I used inspiration from dream imagery to create a dreamlike hazy glow from the moon, as well as combining unlikely images in juxtaposition. My favorite part of this collage is the contrast of the woman's jawline with the smooth lines of her slicked-back hair.
Symbolism Collage-My surrealism powerpoint layering project is based on my personal symbols. It is a photo-collage of my symbols, prominently showing a fawn, corn chamomile flowers, and eyes collaged as a forest floor. I used the surrealist techniques of visual metaphor (an all seeing eye as the moon), symbolism (each image used is a personal symbol that depicts a part of my personality), and distortion (the fawn’s legs are stretched longer). The elements and principles most evidently used in my works were color (in symbolism and in general), and space (in the overlapped photos). To create my layers, I started with a background. Though it was a bit pixelated, it worked out fine since so many other layers went on top of it. The layer was the eyes on the forest floor. Each eye was added separately, and then the color changed, layered, and the transparency changed. After that, I added the flowers the fawn would stand on, and the moon, which was made up of a photograph of the top of a pinecone, a flower, and another eye. Finally, I added the fawn, changed it’s color, and stretched it to distort it. The last step of the project was to add a “glow” to most of the objects in different colors. Probably the biggest aid in working on the project was the “remove background” feature on Powerpoint, which definitely saved me a lot of extra cropping! My personal symbols influenced the artwork. The first layer, the forest, symbolized mystery and curiosity. The second layer, the eyes, symbolized watchfulness, awareness, and introspection. Corn Chamomile flowers showed nature, simplicity, energy & action, purification, and sleep. The flowers radiating around the “moon” were also meant to show styles similar to aboriginal art patterns. The fawn was a symbol of watchfulness, peace, creativity, and intuition. The color that I changed the layers to were also symbols, the sea/forest green means serenity, the yellow in the moon is a reference to creativity and intellect, and the orange is a symbol of change. I was also inspired by two surrealist artists, Dorothea Tanning, and Julien Pacaud (who makes collages himself). First, I wanted to research my personal symbols, and find some to use more frequently in my artwork. I also wanted to use inspiration from my artists (Pacaud and Tanning), and my world culture (Aboriginal/Australian). I think I accomplished these goals through the fashion photography in my first collage, and the pattern of the flowers in my second collage (symbolism). My main goal for this project was to portray my personality through images, colors, and effects in a layered Powerpoint slide. I also wanted to improve my understanding of how to create layers, and diversify how I use Powerpoint, and what I use Powerpoints for. I think I definitely reached my first goal, and I think I’ll be using Powerpoint as a tool for collages more frequently. Overall, I think I did well with this project. It opened up a new media for me to use, ands so I think it definitely influenced my future artworks. While making this piece, I not only learned about my symbols, I also learned valuable techniques in Powerpoint, which can probably be applied to other digital platforms for art, like photoshop.

Symbolism Clay Mask

Our clay masks started out with simple 10-minute sketched ideas, but evolved into tangible clay works. I used personal symbols such as chamomile flowers (forehead; symbolizes youth and happiness), tree roots (head; regrowth, connection to nature), deer (facial structure and antlers; awareness), eyes (deep connections), and the color sea green (for hope and mystery). The circular impressions in the clay are inspired by Aboriginal art, in which the same colors and patterns are repeated.

Self-Portrait Unit

Analogous Colors: Colors that are next to each other on the color wheel.

To make our self portraits, we first took reference photos of ourselves. We then sketched outlines of our features onto tracing paper grids, and transferred those sketches onto watercolor-painted marker board. Finally, we filled the outlines with acrylic paints in a chosen color scheme (single shade or analogous) and added accents with colored pencils. I chose an analogous color scheme of red-violet, violet, and blue-violet.

Growth Statements

I walked into art class at the beginning of this year not really knowing what to expect. Art has been pretty much my favorite class since, well, forever. My main goal this year was to grow as an artist, and I think I definitely accomplished that.

Not only did we learn about several different art movements and styles, from surrealism to pop art to dadaism, we experimented in many of them. Besides this, we went back to basics, which was really helpful for me. I’ve made pretty much a complete turnaround with my approach on shading, and I think my line confidence has improved a lot. Our color theory exercises were really interesting, and I learned how to correctly combine cool and light primary colors to make secondary colors less “muddy”. Learning about the elements and principles was a super helpful refresher course, because I hadn’t talked about them in around 3 years, and the initial focus on them helped me to maintain an omnipresent focus on them throughout the course.

My observational drawing skills have also definitely improved, probably because of our focus on the importance of quick, “warm-up” activities such as gesture drawings.

I was so excited to get to fit in so much new media this semester, especially the water soluble graphite, and further explorations in clay. The puppet show was also a great experience, and I learned a ton about papier-mache and stage/set painting, like how to use only around three values in a mask, because fine blending gets lost on stage, and how to worry the cardboard to make the bends seem more natural. This semester has been a great experience.

Little Dancer of Fourteen years

Edgar Degas, 1879-1881, Tate Liverpool, Multimedia Sculpture (bronze, wax, muslin, linen, wood, silk)

Edgar Degas' "Little Dancer" is one of my all-time favorite pieces of art. I love how docile and demure she is, standing in fourth position with her hands folded behind her, a braid secured with muslin ribbon at the nape of her neck. I also really like her chosen pose, because, as a dancer, it reminds me of waiting in the wings before a performance, or waiting by the side of the studio while an instructor fixes someone else's exercises. Patient. Watchful. Waiting. When Degas displayed it publicly, critics hated it, but I think it's really very beautiful.
"I never Paint Dreams or Nightmares. I paint my own reality." Frida Kahlo


Created with images by holdosi - "girl at night running"

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