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