Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Painting Olympics

Another wet and gloomy day in Bristol town .... fortunately it was a bit drier today, but it was still quite gray ... We met up again in front of Bristol Council House, but this time with paints and scissors and glue. Everything I 'll describe today has been done free-hand, ie without drawing it out in pencil or anything first. Quite a challenge for anal-me, but also quite liberating to not give a damn about how it was going to look and to just go with the flow ...

1. Along the front of the Council House is a shallow pool/fountain thing. The tutor made us sit along the edge of it and told us to make a 5 minute impression of the water using collage. The weather was so gray though you couldn't really see much detail of ripples or reflections in the water so instead I concentrated on the small circular ripples being formed by the rain droplets.

2. We then turned round to look at College Green, in front of Bristol Cathedral. Our first task was to look at the scene and make up a colour pallete for what we saw. I did the trees and and the brickwork of the Cathedral itself. Once we were done, the next task was to look away from the scene and paint from memory using just the colour pallete we had made. I gave up on the Cathedral and concentrated on a tree and a lamppost. After we were done we were asked to note down next to our colour palletes the rough percentage of each colour in the scene (thats the penciled numbers you can see next to the boxes).

3. Off we went after that to the harbourside where we were asked to pair up and choose a scene to paint - but only tonally. This is what mine looked like after I was done with my part (excuse the bad photo quality - taken using my phone):

We were then asked to swap tonal paintings with our partner and add detail and colour to their painting. This is what mine looked like after Kirsty had done her thing with it:

4. We then had a little 5 minute exercise where we had to do an abstract piece using the colours and percentages from the colour palette exercise.

5. After lunch we reconvened in Millennium Square and spent 10 minutes cutting out shapes from a piece of dark paper to describe the scene we could see. The big globe like thing is the Silver Globe belonging to Explore At Bristol; its being obscured by a pillar on my right; and I thought if I'm going to do the pillar, I'll also do the rubbish bin next to it. The wiggly things are the bit of shallow pool by the globe; and in the middle is one of Bristol's resident seagulls.

6. Back to the harbourside and our last exercise for the day was to draw a 2 inch by 2 inch box and paint in it a bit of the scenery using the widest brush we had. Once we had done that we were asked to paint the surrounding bit outside of the box using the thinnest brush we had. Can't say this was my favourite piece, but I've included the brushes I used so you can get a sense of the scale.

So that was today - I found it more difficult than yesterday as I hardly do any painting myself. I think I was happiest with my tonal paining - its made me think I might try and do a bit more of that. The interesting thing to note was that the majority of the students seemed to have preferred yesterday's drawing exercises rather than today's painting ones - really shows where our strengths lie - and therefore what areas we all need to work on!


Emma said...

Sounds like you've had a great few days. These exercises sound like a lot of fun.

Maggie said...

Gosh, that sounds like a long day of hard work. It's interesting to hear what you found easier and more difficult.

Your pictures are great, definitely looks and sounds like you are throwing yourself into the course with great gusto!

Thank you so much for sharing your journey.

Best wishes from Liverpool

deb said...

ooo - i really like the 1st one of the drip in the fountain.
nice bright colours.
sounds like a fun day.

shirley said...

So much fun to see and read about your exercises! Must be very liberating to have to work quickly and within such a tight set of rules. Can't obsess very much.... Please keep sharing!

ksklein said...

Thanks for posting your exercises. It seems to be quite some work, but also such a fun day. Love these kind of assignments.

sooziebee said...

Wow, bet you were pooped after all the hard work. I love reading what you have been up to and it's kind of making me wish I had gone to Uni too!!! Can't wait to read the next posting!!
I am procrastinating at home, checking blogs and NOT stitching some cards as I should be. Only 8 weeks to go until the Xmas market. Watch this space...