Sunday, 26 February 2012

Project 6: Watercolour Final Design Evaluation

Project has to end somewhere, time has ran out.

Unfortunately for now this project will have to end due to I’m running out of time but I will properly come back to it and change the few bits I need to. The first thing would be the hairstyle, I would do some research into woman’s hairstyles and change it maybe even no hair at all which will give the design a different feeling. Also I would look at the harsh lines that the masking fluid has left behind, in general I think the project is going in the right direction even though it’s not a completed design yet in has a lot of potential. A full evaluation can be seen below.

Evaluation for Watercolours

Summary of Project:
I started of this section questioning if I was choosing the correct medium to sample. I had already chosen Oil Pastels to sample which went well and I also picked Acrylics which is the medium I favour. I decided to choose something that was out of my comfort zone I honestly detested watercolours before this project; I couldn’t even produce a flat wash without getting streaks or blemishes.

I started of the project by comparing the different brands of watercolour I tested the full intensity to the weakest mix I could produce. Next I experimented with forming tints by adding water; I compared that to adding Chinese white instead to the paint. Whilst experimenting with shades I recognized that to make certain colours darker it wasn’t as simple as just add a touch of black. Specific colours like yellow make black act as blue and turned yellow into a green instead of a darker shade of yellow. To overcome this you need to mix a darker hue from the same family for example add Burnt Umber to Lemon Yellow to create a darker shade.  

Once I understood how the colour theory worked with watercolours I moved onto mark making, I started off by looking at traditional methods and experimented with watercolour brushes. This headed to looking at other applications such as foam brushes, sponges, oil and also acrylic brushes. I tested layering one colour on top of another seeing which colours were more transparent and which ones were more opaque which also showed me how to produce a third colour. I rapidly moved on to techniques looking at wet on wet, wet on dry, dry on dry and dry on wet. I sampled and created washes until I mastered it. I had real difficulty at first but by sampling and changing different combinations I realised the paint I was using was causing the problems.  I also looked creating textures with watercolour this led to experimenting with loads of different materials which I wouldn’t general associate with painting. Tooth brushes, cardboard, bubble wrap, kitchen rolls, fingers, different types of salt and even Cling Film were some that I experimented with. The Cling Film was the one I choose for the final design as I really loved the result it left on the paint.

I previously used resist techniques when I sampling Oil Pastels but I needed to experiment this technique within watercolours. I also experiment with Beeswax, Oil Pastels, Candles, Crayons and China Markers. Other ways of keeping the paper white included masking fluid, scalpel knife, sandpaper, lifting off with brushes and kitchen roll. I bought some Artist colours as I only had student colours which I have always found adequate. I compared the same brand of Student colours against their artist colours and to be honest I wasn’t that impressed, I expected more of a wow factor. To me it didn’t justify the massive price difference between both products.

I decided on producing a figure drawing for my final design, which I grabbed from a Virtual Pose Dvd. I already sampled different ways of producing textures and out of the two I liked I used the Cling Film technique for the final piece. I decided to sample different colours for this technique and decided that a mixture of Cerulean and Ultramarine suited the design. Once that was decided I experiment with different mediums for creating the contour of the figure. I did initially use a white pastel but I was discovering that it was near impossible to see the line. Which resulted in the texture not completely being painted to the contour. I tried a Black China Marker, White Oil Pastel, Waterproof Marker, a Brush Pen, Crayon and then finally a waterproof fine liner which I favoured.

Final Design:
The final design is not complete there are still a few things I would like to attempt with the design however due to deadlines this project regrettably has to come to a close. I would like to have a look at the hair style on the figure maybe try a bald/short hairstyle, I could even use one of the textures I sampled and created really short hair. This would give the design a different feeling maybe sorrow, sadness or something else on the same lines. The masking fluid is creating such hard lines maybe I need to try applying the fluid with a softer brush or even add a bit of water I don’t really know how to resolve it without experimenting. I just want to produce a softer blend between the white of the paper and the paint rather than a harsh one which it is now. 

Once I’m delighted with the outcome I would like to try and reproduce the same image on a larger scale, it’s not just because a bought 50 sheets of large watercolour paper which I haven’t even used yet. I really feel the image would benefit on a larger scale, more detail could be added and it will achieve more of a wow factor as it will look more impressive larger than a smaller piece. Overall though I’m pleased with the final design, I know it isn’t finished and it is still work in progress but I reckon the image has loads of potential to being a portfolio piece but it just isn’t quite there at the moment.

However after perseverance I feel I can control watercolour miles better than I could at the beginning, I even want to carry on with this project to complete the final design to a finish that I’m content with. This doesn’t mean watercolour will become my favourite far from it, there still things I feel are time consuming and still infuriate me. Stretching paper, taping it, waiting for it to dry it makes me want to scream and grab a canvas and some acrylic paint. Changing the water and cleaning the brushes out all the time just in case you discolour the yellow. Spending time mixing the paint trying to get the correct hue when you know it’s going to dry a lot lighter. Looking at the shine of the water on the paper in case it’s too wet or too dry to add some paint. Blooms, blemishes, water drops ruining the complete
image, never being able to get back the white of the paper due to the staining of the colours. Waiting for a layer of paint to dry completely before being able to add a layer on top, as you can see there’s still masses of things I don’t like about watercolours. The only thing I would like to do differently is try something more in a traditional style of a watercolour maybe a pen and wash landscape. I can’t begin to tell you how much I have learnt, the project this time was more about the journey then the final piece. I most definitely will use watercolour more often as I’m not apprehensive of using the medium any longer; I now feel content and I’m positive I picked the right medium to sample.

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