The brief was to create a visual interpretation of a piece of instrumental music. This exercise required intuition and being plugged-in to ‘right-brain’ thinking/expression.
Keywords from the brief:
- Instrumental music
- Essence or mood of the piece
- Work intuitively
- An adjective or word that you feel describes the tone of the piece
- Square format
- Choose any media
- Introduce colours, textures and shapes
The piece of music I selected was Mademoiselle Mabry – Miles Davies.
I did several sketches on a number of morning commutes into Waterloo; headphones on, plugged in and away… Very enjoyable.
I reviewed the sketches and then repeated the exercise at home using pen and ink on a larger format. All sketches were created listening to the music. They are presented in the order they were drawn.
I also looked at Italian Futurist poetry, particularly the drawing and painting of Marinetti for inspiration.
I think the final pen and ink sketch was the most interesting and successful in communicating the structure and texture of the music.
The words I used to describe the image and further focus my creative development was ‘Structured dissonance’.
I wanted to recreate the essence of the original sketch by capturing and manipulating marks and shapes from the sketch in Illustrator. I then used layers and overlays in Photoshop to add colour and texture.
I created a quick ‘test’ image’.
And then used the approach to create the final piece.
Having all the elements electronically gave me a lot of flexibility and control, and the image developed through trial and error. I deleted a lot.
What I learned from the exercise
What went well
- I enjoyed this exercise a lot – I just lost myself in creating the sketches
- The actual creative bit was short, sharp and focused
- I tried out a lot of different combinations of form and colour
- Using Photoshop gave me good control
- I find pen and ink and very expressive medium to work with and I’m getting more confident
- I’m easily moving between analogue and digital and am starting to discover new creative possibilities
What I could have done differently/better
- I could have done more sketching and introduced colour early on but I didn’t feel that was necessary