25 Apr 2017
Thankfully Adrian was able to help me again as he trim off the sides where the dents were. Removing the double sided tape away, I have also used a different and stronger adhesive (UHU fix) and placed it in every space possible.
Trimming the photos again made the image smaller. I was worried that this would make the object more focused which is what I was trying to avoid. I feel that with the space around it, it would make the photo look more casual. If I was given more time, I would print the photos again. Overall, I am satisfied that everything is completed and my photos are hung. Hopefully this will last long.
24 Apr 2017
When I first got to CSM, I noticed that my wall has not been fixed yet. Apparently the technician was ill and could not do it over the weekend. So I was told to do it myself which I did not mind. However, I wished that I was told this earlier because today, I had to rush to get it done. I had plenty of time but I just started panicking and worrying what if I don't get it done in time. I started thinking about how much more work I had to do like sticking up the velcro and foam board up on the wall and it caused me to rush my work. Luckily my friends were there to help me set everything up.
Taking Adrians and Karens advice, I used double sided tape to attach the velcro up on the wall. Then when the photo was pasted in a right angle, everything was done and perfect.
I was so happy that I finally got everything done and now I could focus on my proposal and workflow pages. The gap between the wall and the photos were perfect as it creates a 3D effect. However, a few hours later, both photos fell and created a dent on the corner. The tape on the velcro, that was against the wall, was weak which caused the photos to drop. Disappointed and upset, I attached the velcro again using UHU glue and I'm letting it dry till tomorrow. The next day all I will do is stick the photos with the velcro and hopefully it would stay. If this incident were to happen before the weekend, at least I would have time to print it and set it up again. However, due to lack of organisation and communication with the technician, there was nothing much I could do as there is not much time left. I was lucky enough to take photos before the dent had occurred, at least I am able to present how it would look like, hoping that this does not affect my grade.
21 Apr 2017
The wall that I was going to use had a huge crack at the side so I couldn't stick my photos on just yet but I did work on putting up velcro. I cut out a thin strip of foam board on the top and bottom for both of my images and pasted velcro on the opposite side. At first I use double sided tape to attach it together but it was too weak so I had to use UHU glue. Then I worked on finding the middle of the wall and labelling it use masking tape. This would make my process easier on Monday so that I don't have to rush it.
20 Apr 2017
When I was at the gallery, I notice that there was a L shaped wall. I thought that this would be perfect to set up my photos (mentioned earlier). I request for that area and the space I got was together with the painting students which would work well with my photos, as their pieces were 2D. As much as I liked the texture of the brick wall, I knew that I could not use it because the cabinet photo would blend in. I did not do much today as it was only just to transport the artworks.
19 Apr 2017
After the photo was printed, I was disappointed at how the store has handled my photo. They weren't very careful which left finger prints and the edges were not cut right. There were also air bubbles in some areas but they weren't that obvious. However, this could easily be seen depending on where the light reflects. Thankfully, Adrian was there to help me trim off the edges correctly and making sure that the photos were still the same size. I would have printed this again but it was expensive for me to print again at a different store.
18 Apr 2017
After looking at the photos I took, I realised that some of the images were blurry which had to be removed. I should have waited for a few seconds every time I press the capture button. However, I did manage to take photos that were suitable where the box, tape and support was not obvious.
I was definitely going to include the cabinet photo that I have made earlier because I liked how genuine it looked. Because I am including the life sized version, I don't think it would be best to include the smaller ones because it would be clear to the audience that its fake once it's presented next to each other. I had to choose photos that work well together like the size of the images. What I did not realise was I forgot to remove the pencil lines during my Photoshop process. It is obvious in the photos I took which i had to eliminate some of the photos.
After much consideration, I settled with this photo.
The box underneath is not obvious and the tape is covered. I did not have to use photoshop for this, except for removing spots. When the fake chair was right next to the real ones, it looked obvious that it was a different kind of chair because of the colour. In this photo, the real chair is visible in a corner just to show that it's in an actual location but it's only displayed enough to not give the fakery away. I also like how this photo works well with the other image as the blue and red gives a contrast. Both photos are a different size so I had to crop both to make it the same shape. When it is presented in the exhibition, it will look more organised. I feel that if I were to make my photos big, it will have a bigger impact to the audience of realising that the photo is not as real as they thought it would be but having it too big is sometimes unnecessary.
Next I thought about how if a border is needed. The borders would then have to be the same colour so that it does not look too colourful. However, both photos do not have the same colour scheme because I would need to use a black border for the chair photo and a white border for the cabinet photo. I did not like how this involves a lot of shades, it will make my piece look too colourful. There must be enough lightning at my area and it needs to be presented on a clean white wall.
I thought about how I would want to present my photographs. After going to multiple galleries I realised that when photos are presented, it is not hang flat on the wall. It's either on a frame or on a photo canvas. In some cases, they are also hang from the ceiling. With the size I wanted, a frame and a canvas would be expensive. Hanging photos will cause the images to rotate. That's not really want I aim for as I want the audience to properly look at my photos. I thought of using a folding screen because I like the idea of the photos surrounding the viewer but with the amount of space I got, the folding screen would be too narrow and small. This wouldn't give enough space for the viewer to observe properly. If I were to paste the image directly onto the wall, it would look too flat and dull. Using wood as a base would make the photo stand out but hanging it on the wall would require me to drill holes on the wood which would not be aesthetically pleasing. I want my photo to have clear image without having any screws visible. So I decided on printing the image and pasting it on a mount board. However once I was at the printing store, they provided printing on foam board where the sticker is printed individually and they paste it directly on the board. I thought this was a good choice because it's not flat, having the 3D effect. In addition, keeping my presentation simple, I will also display the photos next to each other
17 Apr 2017
I went to the kitchen and common room to take photos of my chair because thats where the most of the other chairs were.
During the photoshoot, I kept taking photos in every angle possible even if the box/tape/support/ was visible because I would rather have a much wider option to choose from, so that I can photoshop unnecessary things out. However when I was editing my photos, I had to find the right balance in lightning. If it was too bright, the yellow would stand out most but if it was too dark, you can't see much in the image. As said earlier, I am not professional at using Photoshop, even going on Google didn't help much. It was hard for me to remove large sections because as I did, it ruined the texture and colour. I manage to 'clean' the photos like removing unwanted spots.
16 Apr 2017
For the past few days, I have been working on my chair. After getting the measurements from the actual chair, I went to CassArt and purchase materials that's needed. The photos I took of the chair will help me choose which colour is the most accurate. This was hard to tell as the quality from my iPhone varies in some angles. There was only one A1 silver coloured card, which made me buy an A4 sized and another shade that was similar, gunmetal. It is quite alike, just a little bit darker.
Making the legs were challenging. Even though card is delicate, they're still tough to roll to its right size. Once I got all the ends in place, I quickly tape it over to prevent it from moving too much and applying glue afterwards. When it was dried, the glue overflowed which caused it to be expose, looking matte rather than shiny. This was easily fixed by scraping it off using a blade. I had to do this gently to avoid scratch marks.
The two photos above are what supports the seat from underneath. Even though it's at the bottom, I still need to make sure that it doesn't look uncluttered, in case I might take photos from the a lower angle.
The back couldn't stand in an upright position by itself so I had to create a support system, similarly like the one I created for the office chair. I didn't like how this is expose because then it limits my choices when taking photos. However, it is still too early to decide whether this would be obvious. Same goes for the joint for the legs. I have cut the top section using a scissors, which made it look messy.
When attaching the bottom section of the legs, I used PVA glue and dried it overnight. I wanted to avoid using tape as it is easily noticeable whereas glue is hidden. However, the glue was not strong enough to maintain its strength. It was only attach on a thin glue line which makes it very unsteady. This would be the same if I were to use super glue. Hence, I had to use tape to secure the position. Since the chair was supported with 4 legs made out of card, it couldn't stand up right. I had to use a box to hold up the chair. Hopefully this can be hidden by either playing around with the angles when taking photos, use colour edit to reduce the brightness or photoshop to make it disappear. This goes the same for the support system at the back and the tape at the joints.
13 Apr 2017
- Reflection needs to be more detailed
- How was my research lead to my works?
- Remove the word 'fancy', not appropriate
- Analyse outcomes in more detailed
- Ask questions like 'why?' when reflection as it helps to elaborate more
- Why did I not develop on the 'mid-action' ideas
- Mention why some of my ideas were not develop. What went well and what did not
"How easy did you find...... hard to assess"
To improve on this area, I think I should highlight some of the key words in bold. This would make it easier to assess.
After the peer assessment, I talked to Adrian about what I have been working on so far. Showing him what I have made, he really liked my idea of combing 'fake' objects into a real location. He told me that I should be more caring and give more attention to the photographs I took as I tend to take photos freely. He also introduce me to a new technique on photoshop where when I copy and past an object into another photo, I can soften the edges by layering the mask. It sounded complex but when he showed me the technique, it was quite straightforward. Using this layering mask technique, it blends the outline of the object making it look not as sharp as it should be.
On my way home, I decided to create a life sized chair. I chose this specific chair because the fact that there were a number of them, I can compare it with the model while taking photos. The contrast between the real and fake chair would be interesting in an image and hopefully not that obvious to spot. In addition, I could place it in various locations as the chair was in every room. This gives me more options when taking photos. I wanted to re-create my office chair because it involved a lot of elements but I would have to do it in school. It would be a hassle to carry the model in the tube as it will break. However, I only had 2 days to make this which was not reasonable. I think its possible to finish it within two days but I did not want to rush it as model making requires a lot of patience and I also needed time to take photographs and photoshop it when needed. In the end, I chose the standard chair which works well for me as I have a lot of time to do.
7 Apr 2017
After experimenting different shapes and sizes with several materials, I start working for my final piece.
Learning from what I have been doing in the past, I chose objects that were around me so that it is easy for me to replicate as I am able to observe it fully and make sure that my structure is correctly done. As usual, I need to pick a furniture that does not involve complex forms. Looking around my room, I spot my shelf that is around 5x2x1 foot. I would love to create a life size model of this but it would cost me a lot of money to buy a number of mount boards. So I decided to decrease the ratio and using Photoshop to maximise it. Initially I was very worried to involve Photoshop in this process because, as I am not a professional on using it, the lightning may vary which would make it look obvious that it's not real. What I did was I took photos of the empty space and took another set of photos where the shelf is in that area. Then the shelf will be copied and pasted onto the empty area so that the I could get similar lightning. Like I mentioned before, during the pyramid process, there were some papers sticking out which I had to exclude it when copying and pasting the shelf. I also had to change the lightning a little so that the shelf blends in well with the background. I thought it worked well, even though there is slight visible lines that was hard to remove.
Final Photo :
At first, I made a platform with one paper and folding it in every corner because I thought that it was easier to make. However, it was much harder than I thought. I started making the 4 stands first and cutting it to the length and height. Using a long ruler, I folded the corners. It was tough to maintain the shape as the stand was long and I was only able to hold it in one tiny area using my fingers. So I used strings to hold everything in place while the glue was drying. This was very time consuming and it made everything messy. Some of the strings were glued together and when it was taken off, leftover strings were still attach. This definitely did not work well and I would just have to use the usual method.
It took me a while to complete this as there is a lot of platforms to make. In addition, I was working with small measurements (0.2cm) which made it harder for to control and get the accurate lengths. I could only reduce the ratio by 5 because I had to find an appropriate balance between the shortest and the longest platform. The joints were complicated to me and drawing out the side and front view was confusing. When colour coding each section, I had to think which platforms were similar because they all look the same to me. It takes a lot of patient creating this because there were so many thin strips I had to make. The gluing process was intense because the measurements are not precise causing it hard to align them together and the rectangular shape was not perpendicular. One mistake I made was that I didn't leave a gap from the ground but this is not a big issue as it is not that obvious. I tried my best to keep my workstation but in some cases, I did not notice that the PVA glue was dried onto the paper leaving a shiny surface. In addition, I should have been more gentle while working as it left finger bumps onto the paper. Overall, despite many problems I had to encounter, I am satisfied with my model. It stands right and it looks similar to my actual shelf. It may look simple but it is obvious I have put a lot of work into it.
31 Mar 2017
I gave card another try. Last time I used card, it left me with a bad impression and I wanted to change that by using it on a more structured and angular object.
Using the same measurements and methods I did earlier with the pyramid, but with a more detailed planning than before, I incorporated details like the doorway and jagged walls. Drawing out a detailed plan, helps me a lot during the making process as it prevents me from making mistakes and it also helps me to further think about what could be affected during the procedure. I had to think about how attaching the papers would affect the frontal appearance which means that the adjacent paper needs to be hidden for the front side to appear smooth and plain. I have also split a small section of the wall and combining them again using glue to create the line similarly to the actual pyramid. I contemplated whether to include a bottom piece at each tier because this will create more support and prevents the flap from sticking out or sinking in. However, a line across each tier would be expose due to the cut out holes which is what I did not want. If I manage to work carefully, especially when cutting the holes out, hopefully it will stand straight.
For the roof section, I had a bottom piece for each tier so that it can stake easily but I needed to be cautious because the bottom piece needs to be as flat as it can be. If it bends, due to wrong measurements, it will cause the sticking process to be longer than usual which is not a big problem but it is better to have accurate measurements to prevent this.
I made a mistake of not cutting the door way before attaching it together because I had to improvise by using a blade to cut it off. This made the edges not smooth. Taking a closer look, it is clear that the cuts were not done appropriately (they overlapped each other) causing the edges to be rough and the measurements affected the proportion. Again, I need to be more careful when working with PVA because it causes the paper to be dirty. However, despite of all that, using colours does give a different feel compared to using white. I feel that adding some shade to the model, gives it a bit of life and it looks less artificial. This also showed me how important details can be because it makes it look more elaborate and interesting.
The clear difference between using mount board and card is that mount board is much more durable. If I were to use mount board for this design, I think it would have been a lot more different. The edges would be smooth and the flaps from the wall would be in a right angle. When applying PVA glue on to card, the card bends upward which I think its because when I scrap the overflowed glue using a ruler, the paper slides along as well making it curve (one of the reasons why the flap is not at a right angle).
Overall, I don't think card is suitable and I don't like how it behaves with glue. I dislike how fragile it is but it helps in terms of making circular figures. Even so, I need to be extra careful when using them as they are a weak material.
20 Mar 17
Following the idea that I had with the pyramid, I used foam board to re-create a chair. I wanted to expand my skill but incorporating various shapes into this model which is why I chose a chair to replicate. I made a quick and simplified sketch of the chair so I can understand the structure better whilst also adding the rough measurements.
I know that the seat and back curves for comfort but it did not occur to me that it does. So I decided to not include it and make it flat. I was afraid whether this would affect the appearance but it is not something that is highly noticeable when looking in the actual chair. Behind the back, at the waist area, is jagged. Should it be included? Like I said earlier, the curves was not notable so would the jagged be? This also applies to the neck area. The neck is important as it acts as a support to the model but the jagged shape probably isn't.
What I found the hardest making this was probably the stand in between the seat and the legs
I couldn't create it using foam board because its circular and making it square shaped is not suitable (appearance wise). Hence, I used card but using one layer was not strong enough so I had to use 3 layers. I glued 3 paper together and curved it once it dried. However, it did not occur to me that the outside layer needed to be longer than the inside so that it is able to circulate fully but I manage to attach the two ends together using a combination of double sided tape and glue. Again, I made a mistake of not attaching the tape right at the edge which caused a bump in the middle. Nevertheless, this could be fixed using photoshop. The stand was finally strong enough to hold the structure but I was concern as to how to attach the square shaped legs to the circular stand.
For the wheels, I had no other choice but to use card. I was worried whether this would be strong enough because the stand in the middle doesn't help support it. The stand stops right before where the legs are which meant that the wheels are holding the entire structure. If this does not work, I will use a thick layer of foam board and place it inside the stand, long enough for it to support from the ground. Then I can remove it using photoshop.
I applied glue wherever there is contact including around the edges to fully secure the place. Once everything was carefully attached, I waited for the glue to dry overnight and it managed to attach quite strong. However, it is still quite weak as the support is from the card. When making the seat and back, I freely cut it using a blade.
What I learn from using foam board was that I had to take my time while cutting it. Because the material is not entirely flat, I shouldn't rush it as it causes the board to dent, especially at the edges. Moreover, I needed to be more careful while working with PVA glue because it causes my hand to be dirty which affects the white foam board. I made a mistake of not cutting a hole at the structure so that I can insert the lever in but this could be one of those removed elements that makes the audience feel uncomfortable (see doorknob removal).
(BREAKTHROUGH) As I brought the chair on my way home, I took the tube and I saw the empty seats in front of me. At that moment I just thought of putting my model in front of it and see what I can develop from it. This reminded me of one of my earlier idea which is to incorporate models in a real location, making it look natural and real.
Thoughts : I have been working with only white coloured materials. Would including colours affect my pieces? Would it give a different feeling?
18 Mar 17
What I have learned from yesterday was that to make something look realistic while using paper materials, I would need to imitate a figure that is not ruin because paper gives the object look 'brand new' and too 'neat'. Moving on, since I have been focusing on things that a lot of people are familiar with, like the pyramid and the white house, I wanted to focus on objects because I find it the easier to replicate, especially when it is physically with me. This will also increase my choices on what to create. When the object is in front of me, I am able to observe it in any angle and understand the structure better.
Before developing on yesterday's work, I wanted to experiment on card first. The works I have made so far were very angular, so using card will help achieve circular figures. I looked around my room and spot any items that were circular. There were quite a few options like the fan, lamp, bottles etc but carefully observing the features in each object, I realised some parts may be quite tough to create.
The fan's cover is fixed shape in which where it is made of thin rods around it. I could use strings to replicate this but the shape curves like a protector so I would need to use something that is strong but also light. Maybe using wire rods as it's light and strong enough to hold its shape but combining it with the frame would be hard because the circular frame will need to be made out of card. There is a lot of things to consider and once it gets complicating and messy, that's when it's not possible to make using paper materials.
I manage to find a clear cased container and made it out of paper. I took the measurements and created it to its exact size.
This was very unsuccessful due to the fact that it is hard to create a perfect circle using a weak material. I trimmed the top cover using both scissors and blade because I wanted to see which works best. The blade was definitely much smoother to use but I had more control when using the scissors. Creating the border was simple but attaching it in an angle was tough because the paper was thin which means that I had to hold it. However, I could not tell whether if I was holding it in the right angle. If this wasn't circular, I could have use my right angle ruler and leaned the paper against it. I used PVA glue to connect it but because I had to hold the cover, I did not have enough hands to clean the excess glue that was spilling out. So it made it look messy. This goes the same to creating the container. Also, I did not like how the remainder of the paper was sticking out but this could easily be fixed by placing the double sided tape at the very edge. Overall, I will avoid creating circular objects.
Thoughts : Maybe I should try making curve figures using a strong material? like foam board or mount board.
17 Mar 17
Moving on from styrofoam, I worked with mount board. It is one of the most used material to make models because of it's smooth surface and it's also easy to work with. This time, I decided to create a building that is simple to create and does not have many complex designs. I am looking for a monument that has mostly angular shapes because the mount board is not capable of bending due to its strong structure.
Going on Google, I found many buildings, however, none of it was what I wanted to create because I wanted to make a model that most people are familiar with, hoping at first glance that the object would look realistic in a photo. I managed to find a clear photo of the Chichen Itza Pyramid. I chose an image that had a clear front view of the building so that the measurements is proportioned, and also a close up detailed version to see what texture it has.
I printed the photos so that I can measure the pyramid easily. Increasing the ratio by 3, it made it easier for me to work with as the measurements are bigger. I thought about how if I should create the depth to its right measurement and if I should cover the sides.Was these all necessary if I am only going to picture the front?
I definitely did not think thoroughly while making this. Even though this turned out quite successfully, I realised that there were few steps that I missed which caused a few errors while constructing it. For example, having incorrect measurements for the roof.
The picture above shows how I had to improvise to create the depth between each block. The top should have been wider than the bottom and there should be a base so that it can stack easily. While I was measuring earlier, I only thought about the width instead of how deep it needed to be. It may look odd from the side as the roof is now slanted but as long as the bottom part of the room is perpendicular, it won't affect the base of the pyramid. It was hard to even get the top parallel to the bottom so I had to use my instinct to get it at the right angle, which worked out perfectly. Another mistake I did not think of is the exposure of the sides.
When gluing the two pieces perpendicular, I did not occur to me how the side needed to be covered because when the edges that has been stuck together may cause the glue to overflow and cleaning it would make it look messy. I was lucky enough to realise this as soon as I started making it. One last fault I did was the depth for each step. It didn't think of how the depth increases as it gets wider so I made everything the same length.
Once everything was fixed, I created the steps which was easy to make. Based on the picture I printed earlier, I could not get the right height of the step since the photo was taken from the front, but I managed to get the measurements of each width. I simply work my way from the bottom and kept increasing pieces till it has reach to the top. I forgot to cut out door holes at the roof but it was too late to fix it because I have already stuck it down.
Using mount board is fairly easy to work because it's like working with paper except the material is harder. I should have kept my cuts clean by slowly and repeatedly cutting my blade along the board. I tend to be very impatient which caused some excess bits to stick out making it look untidy. Working with PVA glue can be quite dirty as the dry glue gets stuck to your hand. Plus, the board itself is white so it will make the dirt look obvious. However, this can be fixed using photoshop. I may have made a few mistakes but they were minor and could easy be fixed.
After having the talk with Adrian the other day, he told me about the concept of diorama. It gave me an idea of how I could combine two distinct objects together making it look as natural as it can be. Looking around my room, I searched for an object smaller than the pyramid so that I am able to play around with the different locations I can place it in.
Moving the thing around, it reminded me of the human behaviour. Climbing, walking, standing, moving around the monument. I was afraid this may give the wrong impression to the viewer because it takes away the whole 'is it real or not' impression away. Also I couldn't see the correlation with this and my proposal.
I started thinking about background. I have been making models that I did not think about how I would present it. I know that it is early to decide how to showcase my work but I had an idea of creating a replica for the backdrop. Looking at the printed photos, I did a quick painting using acrylic on paper by incorporating colours similarly to the photograph. When I placed the model in front of the painting, the model came out a bit dull which did not work well with the vibrant backdrop. I decided to use photoshop and individually at the structure on to the painting. This produced a different image than before.
While I was cropping out the model, I realised that there were leftover bits sticking out from the edges which I had to exclude, mainly because it was hard to include it in. This made the building looked 'neat'. The fact that it looks fake at first glance, it made the piece look more interesting. In addition, the colour contrast between the two images is very eye catching, which I don't mind but what I didn't like was that it looked too fake. I wanted it to look as realistic as it can (structure wise) but it didn't work because the original pyramid is not as perfect as my model. It's an ancient and ruin monument so re-creating using mount board, made it look brand new, which is why it did not work. Similarly to the background as well. It needed to have more texture and elements to it so that it is less idealistic looking.
How about using a real background?
Placing the model in the jungle? or a park?
Then I decided to photoshop the model onto a location that I took the other day. I had to adjust the lightning of the model to make it look realistic. I like the idea of this but I don't think this piece worked well due to the clear contrast between the two images. I will try this method again but instead of using photoshop, I will physically put the model in the location itself, then taking the photo after.
14 Mar 17
After researching on model making, I experimented with styrofoam as it was most accessible in the workshop,
Firstly, I printed a photo of the White House making sure that it is at a familiar angle. I chose the White House because it is a building which everyone is familiar in which would make the audience recognise it instantly. After analysing the structure of the building, I realised that there are many exterior corners like this.
This makes the building look fancy, hence, I needed this element so that it will not look 'too straight' and plain. However, in the same time, I did not want this piece to look too elaborate and make it as minimal as I can. To create these different sections, the only method I could think of is to split the main structure into two inserting a narrower and bigger piece in between.
At first I thought that the measurements were needed but since this is just a practice, I worked with my instinct. I realised towards the end that having measurements and planning out properly is very important because it helps me getting the right proportions. Using the scrap that was available, I first carved out the size of the entire building then only I will start slicing and creating the little bits that needs to be added. Again, I am working with heat and as usual I was very hesitant at first but I got used to it as I continued. The right angle ruler that was part of the machine helped me in terms of cutting it straight but it wasn't easy to use because it did not move smoothly. Maybe this is due to the fact that the metal was rusty or something else I probably wasn't sure of.
Making the thin slices was not hard because I simply use the block and slowly move it through the hot wire. Due to its size, I could hold it steadily. However, I had to move fast enough so that the wire does not stay in one position which can cause a hole on the styrofoam. The hardest part to cut was at the roof area where I had to slice it in an angle. There was no right way to do this properly, maybe there is but I just did not know about it (need to ask technician for this), so I freely cut it however I wanted to. Not realising how many times I did it, it became bumpy.
When every platform was done, I decided to cover it with paper to make it seem more realistic. I realised that it did not look like the actual building due to my lack of instinct skills. Working with small measurements whilst using heat is very challenging for me which causes me to be very hesitant while working.
Covering the styrofoam using card and PVA glue, I made sure the glue was smooth by scraping any excess off using a flat surface. So that when the paper is attached, there is no bumps whilst smoothing it out. I did not want the styrofoam area to be expose so I covered the whole piece as much as I could by using one sheet. For the sides, I used a different sheet to attach it resulting an exposure at the edges
I continued covering each piece and it started to look like one of the buildings in China, like the Forbidden City. Obviously this is due to the fact that it was not planned very well beforehand. When I was working on the thin pieces, I had to extra cautious because it was very fragile while gluing it together. Luckily, none of the pieces broke.
When creating the windows, I used cardboard to act as a frame. I chose cardboard because I wanted to continue with using raw materials. I did not want to create separate pieces to attach onto each side as the cardboard would be visible. I had an idea of attaching the paper onto the cardboard and crossing an X in the hole which I will then fold it over covering each side and cutting off any excess. For the 'view', I printed photos of curtains which is then pasted at the bark and attached it onto the building where it needs to be. The size was clearly not proportional but it was the smallest I could work with in that size. When folding the paper, it created soft edges which is not what I hoped for as windows have hard corners.
For the balcony, again working with small elements, which is not what I am good at, I decided to print a photo of the balcony from the actual White House and pasted it against a cardboard to give it a solid base. Balconies have gaps in between which I clearly do not have. There was no easy way to do this unless I work with bigger proportions. I thought of ways to create this section properly but it was too complex.
Clearly, this did not work well because I did not plan it beforehand which made the proportions messed up. I also should have made my piece bigger so that when I am working with smaller elements, it is not too small to work with. Other than that, styrofoam is hard to work with. Model making requires the user to work slowly, and cautiously in which working with heat did not help me in that. I had to work fast when using the styrofoam cutter because if I leave it on in one position for too long, it will create a big hole. The cutter itself was not very good which affected my work. The right angle ruler was too rusty making it hard to move left and right freely which effected my measurements. Sometimes while trying to slice the styrofoam, it pushes the metal rod to the side causing it not to cut in a straight line (photo below). This was due to the fact I was working too fast. However in the same time, I couldn't take my time (as mentioned earlier), so I had to balance my speed well to avoid any mistakes.
Other than the use of the cutter, the surface was rough and it did not work well with paper, especially when gluing them together. Sometimes, after cutting the styrofoam, leftover bits are visible but it can be fixed easily by sanding it using sand paper. However, what if I am working with thin areas? This would be very tough as it can easily break into pieces (left photo). The photo on the right shows how if the glue is not smoothen, it will cause bumpiness on the piece which will create gaps when attaching it with another block. In conclusion, styrofoam is definitely not the material to work with.
13 Mar 17
The past few days, I have been working on my sketchbook and Workflow by updating my research and reflection page. Hence, I have not been making stuff but I do have an idea of some ideas that I will be making for the week. After my progress tutorial today with Adrian, he introduced me to the term 'diorama'. I have never heard of this word but I understood what it meant after Adrian explained it. Through my understanding, diorama is quite similar to using Photoshop but it is work mostly on 3D objects, where there is no technique of Photoshop involved. Meaning that the objects itself are placed together to capture a photo instead of cutting and pasting an image to another.
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I was told to look at Anne Hardy and Gregory Crewdson's work as they have work with dioramas. This could be a route I can work on by creating photographs that incorporates the 3-dimensional quality of diorama, then layering it with real objects by photographing it again. This will cause the image to flatten out some of the differences to gain the disquieting experience.
I was very satisfied after the tutorial because I got more ideas to choose from for my final piece, but in the same time, my ideas are constantly expanding which means that I would have more models to make and also developing it. I really want to get this done by the end of this week so that next week, I can start making the piece.
9 Mar 2017
Today I decided to start creating my ideas that I have mentioned earlier. I started off with something simple by re-creating Thomas Demand's work on his 'emptiness' photos. I looked around my room and thought of working with everyday objects because that is something that most people are familiar with. Setting up my equipments, I pretended that I was actually getting ready to go out. When the objects has been placed, I maintained the position and took my camera out to take photos.
After taking it from every angle as possible, I chose this photo to work with because the main objects are in the centre and the lightning shines directly onto the chair, as if someone has already sat there. I even managed to crumple the shirt a bit to make it look like it has been leaned on. I have left the laptop open to make it seem that it has recently been used and the straightener on to make it look like it is currently being used. However, the camera couldn't capture the light switch well due to the indicator being too small( or maybe it was because the light from the lamp overpowered it).
Using photoshop, I 'cleared' the board using the clone stamp tool because I did not want my image to look too messy, but in the same time, it needs to give an emotionless vibe. The clone stamp tool was hard because the texture of the board changes, resulting in an uneven tonal colour. This would not have happened if I simply remove all the papers on the board but it was a good learning process in case I may use this technique in the future. I was almost done with the image but I may have accidentally pressed a button on my keyboard which made the photo turned black and white. I have clearly made a few mistakes like at the head lamp and also the paper that was left on the board. The reason why I left the paper was because I thought it would be too idealistic without it. Perhaps I should have compared without the paper first before deciding. I also should have removed the wire on the table and also on the left hand side. This is something I need to take in for future reference.
Moving on, I took photos of a fallen laundry basket.
Similarly like what I did before, I got rid of any additional items that were in the frame. I hated the fact that you could see the floor mat in the toilet because it ruined the whole dark and mysterious theme that I was trying to portray. I simply colour the inside using a brush. While I was erasing the jacket at the door, unfortunately the door knob gets cancelled out as well because the jackets were covering it. So I took the whole knob out, instead of leaving it halfway. After looking at the door as a whole, it gave me an uncomfortable feeling because it is not something I was used looking at, especially when I have taken out the most important tool of the door. That's when it made me realised that changing or removing small features could effect the whole photo. I have also changed the contrast and exposure, like Demand's photos. I'm not sure if its noticeable but I did not edit the laundry basket because as I was increasing the exposure, the red became too vibrant and took the attention away. After editing, the door became more vivid but the edges was vignette, making it look like a crime scene area.
The little things I have learned from editing today could benefit me for my final outcome such as the removal of the door knob, increasing the exposure and contrast of a photo, removing unwanted items and making sure to get the proper lightning.
On this page, I did a rough sketch of an idea incorporating my mid-action objects and also my photoshop work. The background would be a flat image stuck on a solid base and in the middle, there would be a realistic looking 3D model made out of either styrofoam, wood, metal etc. Alike what I did earlier, the background image would need to have the proper lightning and also little features that gives the 'off' feeling to the viewers. However, I still need to work on creating small 3D models and I would need to sketch up more ideas to choose from before before deciding this could be my final outcome.
8 Mar 2017
Today I went to several art galleries that I have found using the app called ArtRabbit.
The first gallery I went to was in Ben Brown Fine Arts which presented works from Gavin Turk Give In. He "transforms the gallery into a Museum of Curiosities" that showed non-genuine archaeological objects. Juxtaposing the objects to highlight the importance of each form and function of each item, it forces the viewers to take a closer look as he challenges the notion of value, authorship and identity.
Turk's minimalist boxes was inspired by Donald Judd, Untitled (1975), which lead to his work of Rotrophydhian(2017). The medicine cabinet is referencing to the idealistic images of society and addressing the long existence of philosophical towards birth, death and decay. The boxes on the wall were created minimalistic so that the attention is towards the objects inside. I think because the boxes was well-made, it seemed elegant, which increases the value of the object in it causing me to be drawn into the work. Similarly to my past plinth work I did during The Language of Objects. Some of his pieces were also placed on the floor which made me observe it in every angle. Why was I so interested at the piece?
The next gallery I went to was in White Rainbow, showing works from Yuko Mohri Moré Moré (Leaky). Her installation consist of found everyday objects, where she has collected them in cities around the world, wired together to imitate the makeshift water repairs she noticed in the Tokyo metro. Her work spreads across the gallery floor and is also set into a two-dimensional frame. The objects are connected to form a circuit containing flowing water.
The sculpture played various noises which came from the machine that pumps the water upwards. I was really into the whole mechanism and how Yuko Mohri re-used found objects to give a new function and meaning to it.
Moving on, I went to the Korean Culture Centre UK which showed Children Shouldn't Play With Dead Things by Yeji Kim. She combines visual debris and pieces that is collected from online spaces, such as Instagram, and creates montages to give them a new meaning. By removing the narratives, from the original owner of the photo, the image gets appreciated and contemplated. Her paintings shows her understanding of 'shallowness' and 'flatness' in which she presents them in a light and cheerful way. The paintings are bleached, showing no mark of time or space. In result, it makes the audience question how this experience can change the way we observe our visual reality. I was looking at her documentation and also her final works and for me, I did not get the sense of 'shallowness'. I think this is because the fact that she has used bright colours, which indicated cheerfulness to me, took that sense away
Lastly, I went to the Aram Gallery to look at No Randomness. No Randomness was not at all related to my project. I just went because I thought it was interesting to know why certain objects are shaped, measured or even coloured a certain way. The gallery promotes and encourages the viewers to understand contemporary designs. "I see it as a methodology to understand the world around me and an attitude towards design" . Knowing the little detail, makes the object seem less boring as it highlights the "hidden beauty of everyday products".
7 Mar 2017
Today I experimented on plastic. It was also my first time using this material and it also involves heat, which what made me quite hesitant at first when using the machine. Using scrap plastic, I heat the material under the hot air and waited for it to become mouldable.
Because the plastic is very thick to work with, I was only able to bend it, even though I have put it under the heat for a long time. When the plastic was soft, it looked like rubber but it was not as soft as I thought it would be. I used a thinner plastic and the melting process was shorter. Using the same idea I had yesterday, I took another plastic with a sharp end and tried to pierce it through. I had to work fast because the plastic solidifies quickly, which means if I were to use plastic for my outcome, I would need to be as accurate as I can in a short period of time. In addition, the gloves made it more difficult in terms of speed and accuracy because the glove was too big and uncomfortable. I could not see what I was doing while I held the plastic. My first attempt on trying to make a hole did not succeed really well. I was moving too slow which made the two plastic stuck together.
I heated the clear plastic again to remove the two pieces and attempted on making a hole again.
For my second attempt, I did not expect for it to have a bulge instead of a pointy end. However, the form reminded me of a pebble falling under water. Looking around the workshop, I saw scrap pieces of styrofoam and thought of combining the two materials together. Obviously I could not burn it both at the same time, as it could cause serious harm, so I surrounded the styrofoam with the plastic by melting it first. In the process of covering it, the styrofoam started to melt slowly. This causes some bits to separate whilst some area still stayed intact. This method reminded me of the action of pulling cotton candy.
I took notice what I created today like the pebble falling on water and pulling of cotton candy, hoping that I could develop this by making a bigger version. I had an idea of using raw materials to impersonate regular actions.
6 Mar 2017
I decided to go to the metal workshop because it was a material that I have never worked with. I am hoping to get more knowledge on the behaviour of the material and hopefully come up with an idea I could make. As soon as I stepped in the workshop, I asked the technician whether he could teach me the various equipments I am able to use for experimenting. He understood what I meant and taught me how to use the welding machine. He also showed me how to curve metal using a metallic cylinder and a plier. Using the scrap metals that were available in the drawers, I played around with the welding machine at first by combining two or more copper rods together. I learned that the heat from the machine not online glues the metal together, but it also allows the rod to bend.
I was very nervous when using the machine because it released a high amount of temperature. Even though I was wearing gloves, I felt worried if I could still feel the heat from the metal. The more I used it, the more I became comfortable and I was using the machine with ease. Then I tried curving the rod into making a circle. This was quite tough for me to do because the metal itself was strong. When the circle was made, I cut the excess off using a plier and hammered the two edges on top of each other so that when it is welded, it will become one smooth piece. Hammering the edges together was not an easy task because I had to closely hold the metal together, to prevent it from sliding off, and in the same time, I had to hammer it making sure that I don't hit my fingers.
Afterwards, I played around with the metals that was already in the scrap drawer. I took pieces with different shapes and sizes and played around with it.
One of my concept was mid action objects, in which I give the audience the feeling of anxiety. Using the curve objects, I thought of having it 'balanced' on the edge of the table.
I knew what I was trying to create here but I think that if I set it up in a proper location and using Photoshop to remove my finger, it will come out successfully.
Continuing with my experimentation, I looked at the steel object and noticed how sharp it was at the end.
Using the cloth, I wrapped the metal sheet with it and I was concentrating on the tip. It looked as if the metal was about to pierce through but because I'm not forcing it, it doesn't. The tension between the sharp end and the delicate cloth will give the impression as if it will cut through. This gave me an idea of making a video out of this where the metal is continuously pushed through the cloth, making the viewer anxious of what is going to happen next in which towards the end, the audience realises that the video is repeated.
Then I experimented with using more metal sheets because I thought the level of anxiety would increase as well. I used the bottom of the chair to tape the cloth in each corner. When I placed the metal bits on top of it, only the tip appeared on the bottom. Due to the cloth not taking up the shape of the metal, I don't think it was as effective as using one piece. However, if I were to choose this idea, I would like to incorporate more pieces as it has a higher chance of 'breaking' the cloth. This would be part of my development process
5 Mar 2017
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Today I decided to go to art galleries as I thought I had done enough research. Following the notes I took previously, I organised my time well by going to places that was nearby within a day. The first place I went to was the Serpentine Gallery because it had works on Douglas Gordon. As soon as I stepped in, there was a ping pong table and a snooker table. I have never seen this section of his work so I read the leaflet that was given. However, it mentioned about how the audience should play and did not talk about the meaning behind his work. As I walked along, I saw two televisions on the floor in which the video that was playing was mirroring each other. I started to pay very close attention to it because I have mentioned in my research page that Gordon works usually works with mirror image and I wanted to experience how it would be like to watch one of his work. The video showed scenes from the side window of a taxi where you can see the buildings, people etc passing by. The longer I watched it, I felt more overwhelmed. It was definitely quite tempting to watch both at the same time. Something about the video made me very intrigued and I couldn't tell what it was. All I understood was that I couldn't stop watching it.
4 Mar 2017
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Moving on from Thomas Demand, I researched on Douglas Gordon and David Lamelas more in depth by using the books from the library. I understood what the artist was trying to show and I have learned more techniques I could use. I could not find books on Bruce Nauman Falls Pratfall and Sleights, hence, I felt that it should be removed from my project proposal.
3 Mar 2017
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Today I spent the entire day in the library looking for more resources on artists. The first artist I looked at was Thomas Demand and thankfully, there were lots of books regarding his works. I have managed to get information on his process and problems he has encountered, which would help me along during my process.
The last book that I read did not help me much because the content was similar to the previous books I have read. Moreover, it used a lot of words that I did not understand which made me confused but the book introduced me to two other artists that has work similarly to my theme.
1 Mar 2017
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I went on the app called ArtRabbit which showed me galleries in London. Using the search bar, I couldn't find works that were related to my theme. I typed in manipulat, deception, deceive, fake, faking, trick etc but there were all past events. So I scrolled through and chose galleries that interest me by basing on the title. I know that this is not the best way to choose but if I were to read at every description, it would take up a lot of my time. After I have read the title, I proceed to reading the description and see if it appeals to me. Noting down all the galleries in my notebook, I divided them evenly on my timetable because I aim to spend an entire day visiting at least 3 galleries. If I were to visit one each day, it will consume a lot of my time and energy.
I continued working on my PPP and making sure there are no spelling or grammar errors. I asked my friends to proofread it to make sure it is clear what I'm portraying
28 Feb 2017
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I had a hard time finding artists that has worked with manipulation because I didn't know how to properly explain what I am trying to search. Using the internet, I typed in "Artists that has worked with the theme of manipulation" and it mostly showed me Photoshop works http://mymodernmet.com/10-incredible-photo/
I found more websites like, http://www.coolhunting.com/culture/interview-mark-fox , which did not help me because it was very confusing for me to understand as the artist was talking about how the puppets he made were manipulating him. However, I managed to find two artists that I liked because the response they got to their works was what I wanted for my project.
I showed my PPP to Adrian and he asked me what do I want to achieve from the whole manipulation theme. I explained to him and he told me to put it in the description because it wasn't clear to him. Then he introduced me to Thomas Demand, which I was very into because he made works that looks like an actual site but the more you stare at it, it gave an odd feeling and it inspired me a lot. The more we discussed about my topic, the more it lead me to the concept of trickery and how it plays with the viewers mind. To me, it didn't really matter because manipulation and trickery are quite similar to each other. (I may need to change the title of my project)
After completing my concept and description, I move on to updating my timetable and evaluation. Writing my evaluation was not that difficult because I knew what I had to do such as reflecting daily and recording my process onto Workflow etc, The timetable part was a bit tricky because I had to make sure that my final piece was halfway done before Easter break which means that my research, designing ideas, developing them, testing out materials has to be done before then.
27 Feb 2017
Finding a theme was hard because, firstly, there are so many topics I like, secondly, I had to avoid cliches theme and thirdly, I had to make sure it was not too broad nor too narrow. Lately, I have been reading facts and figures about the London Underground. Articles of it kept popping up on my Facebook page under the website Londonist.com. The reason why I was so interested in it was because it is something I use almost everyday without realising how fascinating it is. This was one of my idea I could look at (or I could focus on how I have been spending too much time on my phone?) I went to the library and looked for books about the underground tube. The books didn't help me at narrowing things down because it only states informations about it and also its history, which is expected. There are so many things I could concentrate on such as the line, the transport, the people taking it, the mechanism etc. Then, I went on Pinterest and typed in the keywords like "Tube", "Underground" and "Art" and what mostly came up was artworks on the tube map.
The image above, The Great Bear (1992) by Simon Patterson, is a lithograph which shows each line presenting groups of people like scientist, philosophers etc. Each of the category is listed next to a coloured line, which can also be seen at the bottom right of the image under the title 'Key to Lines'. What I like about this work is how the artist has juxtaposed a well-known image subtlety, which requires the audience to look at it even harder.
Another theme I like is the idea of combing two or more distinct objects to create a piece that plays with the audience mind, leaving them with the feeling of uneasiness.
I saw a video on Facebook and it showed an animated egg falling from above however, instead of expecting it to crack, it bounces off the ground. That unexpected scene made me feel uncomfortable similarly when I see the photos above. The surreal shots was created by Stephen McMennamy where he combines two separates photos making them into one photograph. Obviously he has alters the size of each object to make sure that it looks convincing and using same coloured background, made it seem the piece is a whole.
After looking at the two artists, I realised something that is similar. I enjoy the idea of making the viewer look at an art piece twice and also making them feel uncomfortable, but in the same satisfying, causing them to reassure of what they are looking at. It lead me to the idea of manipulation, fakery and trickery. That is how I found my project idea.
When I hear the world manipulation, I think of the term 'brainwashed', as if someone is controlling your mind. Then it lead me to how the media manipulates the public. I have always known about manipulation in media, especially in magazine covers. Manipulation is a broad topic because there are so many things I could look at like politics, media etc. I researched about manipulation in media because it is well known and it is easy to research as there are many articles talking about it.