The brief and objectives
The brief for this assignment was quite broad and represented an interesting creative challenge.
Key words from the brief were:
- ‘Greetings card’
- Telling your tutor about yourself
- Notes to accompany the making
It seemed to me that the response to this brief was as much about documenting the creative process as the finished artwork itself.
I found it a challenge to come up with an interesting idea – my initial thoughts were too obvious. I started down a couple of different routes and by chance ended up taking bits from each to develop the final solution.
The following sketches, thoughts and mindmaps cover my initial ideas and thinking.
I scanned through several reference books/magazines for inspiration. I came across a number of examples of approaches that I didn’t want to follow but was struggling to work out what I did want to do.
I took a trip to the coast to take reference photographs based on ideas in the second mindmap.
The ideas I initially developed were loosely based around juxtaposing different aspects of my life into a single picture. For example, the visual juxtaposition of city verses country, flocks of sheep verses crowds of commuters, corporate banking verses fading seaside amusement arcades/slot machines, crammed and cramped underground platforms verses bleak and beautiful landscapes. I wasn’t happy that this approach would adequately answer the brief although I think there is a germ of an idea in this that is worth pursuing.
At some point when I was sketching I had the idea of creating an image that talked about the creative process itself in the form of a simple narrative using a comic strip format.
The following pictures show bits of the artwork and reference materials at various stages.
The final artwork and why I decided to portray what I did
I think the final artwork answers the key points in the brief in an interesting way. Hopefully it gets a laugh too.
I really like the work of Adrian Tomine and took inspiration from his comic books and illustrations.
The structure of the final artwork was based around a simple narrative in three pictures that outlined:
- The problem I was up against
- What I did about it
- The solution (or not in this case)
The final artwork was constructed from pen and ink drawings collated into a single image using Illustrator.
What I learned from the assignment
I found this exercise the most challenging so far. I already know that I need more structure and discipline around how I generate and develop ideas; this is one of the reasons for doing the OCA course. My usual approach which is to take the first thing that comes to me is not enough.
I’ve had a sneak preview of PART 2 of course which looks like it will explore this in a bit more depth.
What went well
- I like how the artwork came together in illustrator
- I like the final result. It represents my humour, what I’m interested in visually and the materials and techniques I’m starting to work with
- I created a colour swatch before working in Illustrator – This was a lesson from the previous exercise that saved me a load of time
- I’m pleased with the layout – this is my first serious attempt at a comic strip.
What I could differently/better
- More practice. Drawing, drawing, drawing!