Wednesday 1st March, Unit 5 conclusion

To conclude unit 5, I am satisfied (but not altogether gleaming) with the progress I have made in comparison to the first part of the course (from September to November). I have produced four outcomes – two for extraneous employability reasons and two relating to for Unit 5. I’ve used this module to experiment, more or less – I’ve learnt some effects using watercolour, like using line-and-wash and salt to get certain effects with brushes and pens to make illustrative work. I’ve also looked at oil painting further in depth, too, with my documented research of handbooks and MDF studies. I’m starting to come into my own once again nearing the end of Unit 5, ironically, but it’s in preparation for deadlines nine days into the future, so I’m obliged to put a lot of effort in. A strength of the work is that I believe its of a quality upon being scrutinised with techniques and approaches used by artists before me, and I’ve annotated this on the blog. I think that the preparatory work for the outcomes made has been studied and conceptualised quite well, too.

I feel that my research and co-operation into Wayne Hemingway and his company, whilst working with them for two weeks, has been a more positive side to this Unit. I’ve learnt a lot about how a creative design industry works, and where my CAD design skills would come in handy. It also proves that I’ll need to learn more about Adobe Illustrator if I was to do some more work experience for him (or people like him) in the future. I’m hoping to contact a lady called Amy, who’s the organiser for the Festival of Making here in Blackburn upon his request.

I’m hoping (and prioritising) that FMP will be much better, in the consistency of the outcomes produced to the research and practicalities of hanging my work. This will have its fair share of problems, with my intentions of working with cartoons requiring larger spaces and frames. All part of the process, though – if organised and executed properly it will work. There are going to be a lot more areas of assessment, too, which I believe is similar to most of A Level assessment objectives, so I’m going to need to get thinking and focusing seriously. This unit has been a good one for understanding the tools of the trade of different mediums other than oil painting and drawing, but I’m really going to need to focus on producing work for my courses at a rapid pace now.

More to come




Saturday 25th February – concluding my work at Hemingway Design

As has already been mention on this blog, I’ve been down to Wembley, London, for two weeks doing work for Wayne’s design company. The only difference now is that I’ve completely finished my work there – I left yesterday. It’s been a fantastic experience to have worked alongside his team – all of  which are really lovely people – and to have produced the work that I did. I’ve covered contacting clients about possibilities of coming to events, as well as producing 3D renders (something that I couldn’t do previously) of Greenwich Peninsula, producing power-points for companies and conducting research into appropriate entertainers and musicians. It’s really given me a scope of how explorative the man and the company are, temporarily disregarding the profit, with the different acts, comedians and musicians that will be attending. The stress for the rest of the team comes in when they need to handle the budget and keeping the providers for the events committed.

I’ve learnt what ‘experiential marketing’ is whilst doing this work too, which is really interesting. It combines aspects of set design skills into a company’s logo, packaging, etc. which personifies what they want the consumer to see and like about their product(s). I’ve made a Pinterest board covering a variety of these campaigns for inspiration.

After expressing my gratitude to Wayne yesterday, he encouraged me to contact a lady called Amy about organising the ‘Festival of Making’ that’s happening in Blackburn. It’s at home, essentially, so why not. I’ve put this experience on my LinkedIn page for my connections to see. I’m going to send her a message on Monday. In context of these interviews coming up, I’m really excited for what I can put on my CV before I walk in. Some of my renders have been put into an official document for how the earliest event – SAMPLE – is going to take place come March 4th-5th, which is great because it feels like I’ve made a real contribution during my time there (can’t upload it here, unfortunately for business purposes).

All of the renders are available on my website, More to come!

My updated LinkedIn page

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My renders of Greenwich peninsula for SAMPLE and Urban Village Fete


Wednesday 22nd February – Glasgow and Wimbledon interviews

Whilst working at Hemingway Design today I received an email from Glasgow offering an interview for the Painting and Printmaking course, as well as a formal offer to interview from Wimbledon despite complications with Chelsea. This is very relieving news to receive, as I’ve been anxiously waiting to hear what Glasgow has had to say – my first choice of university after Oxford. The same applies to Wimbledon – I’m glad to have an interview at my contingency university coming up soon. I’ve booked Glasgow for the 10th March, 3:45pm – the latest time to have an interview – so that I can get as much work done as possible for the start of FMP and for them. I can kill two birds with one stone this way. Images underneath show the confirmation emails I’ve got.

I’ve not been this happy and excited in ages. Nearing the end of Unit 5 I was saturated with working and seemingly not getting anywhere in the portfolio inspection process. Now there’s most definitely a goal to work for. Now I’ve got to conceptualise where I’m going, the work I’m going to present and the attitude I’m going to show – it’s all about planning ahead.

(Also, I’ve got a lot of growing up to do if – in a utopian world – get an offer at Glasgow. Starting in the second year!)

Lets get making!

Glasgow School of Art

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Wimbledon (UAL)

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18th February – Tate Britain, V&A; my development (concluding Unit 5)

Today I visited Tate Britain with the intention on seeing Hockney’s latest exhibition which showcases all of his work over his career. This didn’t work out – the exhibit was sold out (the first exhibition of Hockney’s and of any artist’s work I’ve looked at to be sold out) – so I went to the general Tate Britain gallery instead (hardly a loss). It’s been a while since I’ve been to a gallery, so I entered with a logical mind – thinking about what made works so satisfying in their composition, geometric shape, application of materials/techniques and colour. What I found was an array of linear horizontal and vertical compositions for works such as ‘Caligula’s Palace and Bridge‘ (Turner, J.M.W 1831) and ‘Woman’s Mission: Comfort of Old Age‘ (Hicks, G.E 1862), and they both worked for allegory – Hicks’ work is part of a series of three, which has the man and woman organised in a right-angled triangle formation (the man being the ninety-degree angle) to imply his assertiveness and dominance in the domestic scene. This could be a reference to 19th century culture, with a man being the breadwinner and the woman being their for his aid. Comfort of Old Age , however, shows the man, old, reclined in his chair with the woman being of his similar height and composition in an equilateral triangle, which, again, may refer to her position of strength in the relationship as now being equal to the man’s. This may infer that she has always been of this position; to cater for the breadwinner.

I thought this was really interesting, so I’m going to print off these images and outline the compositions in my sketchbook. Images underneath show the works mentioned above, as well as some sculptural work. The man who is clasping on to the serpent is who I assume to be a character like Goliath, but I forgot to check, and without the title it’s always difficult to be sure which powerful person this is to be. Regardless, I came for the composition, and I thought that the tension on the pecs, deltoids, bicep, tricep and extensor muscles running down the arm and clasping the snake were great. The myology was spectacular. I’ve done a couple of drawings so far – and I hope to do some more in preparation for the final major project – of some of the figures in the paintings and sculptures I saw today, so that I can replicate some of them in my future outcomes. It’ll be easier than having to come up with some of my own – it is first hand observation!

More to come!


Caligula’s Palace and Bridge‘ (Turner, J.M.W 1831)


Woman’s Mission: Comfort of Old Age‘ (Hicks, G.E 1862)

Wednesday February 15th – Experiencing London and Hemingway Designs

I’m currently on my fourth day in London, and on my third at doing work experience at Hemingway Designs. It’s been an interesting experience so far – it feels so peculiar to sit in an small office of seven people (the man Wayne is away most of the time on business) that are responsible for big events over here. I’ve been given a workload myself, too – I’ve recently designed an area of an event in July (Urban Village Fete) involving marquees and a wildlife backdrop – I’ll put these images underneath. Additionally, I’ve been doing research for closer events taking place – we’re planning three events, by the way: Sample, Urban Village Fete and Classic Car Boot Sale – which involves looking at vintage cars, a variety of forms of alternative and family entertainers/workshops. It’s been busy but I can’t deny that the challenge has been encouraging, and the relationships between the team is nicely balanced with each person being proactive.

I also visited the Victoria and Albert again, like I did in November, on Sunday, but I had time to look at Raphael’s cartoons a bit further. I was just looking at the sheer scale of the works he did. I’ve made a note of how Raphael added a charcoal drawing and painted the contours of his lines in black paint over his cartoons before he painted over them. I’m tied for time right now, and I’m tired, but I’m going to make time for getting my proposal for the FMP done on Sunday. Finally, I met my cousin yesterday evening at Paddington, who works with the BBC. He’s offered some potential work experience if he can get it past other staff. It would be related to filming news reports or documentary based material. It sounds fantastic, and like him, who had no experience in film before he stumbled a vocation in it, I shall follow with some intention of making strong connections with it. Exciting!

More to come!

The front entrance of the office, a render of a set of marquees for clients and research for Classic Car Boot sale.



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Wednesday 8th February – Final Major Project research: Raphael cartoons?

Today I started looking at new research for the Final Major Project. I looked at a variety of print work and drawings relating to what I’ve been doing previously and work that I can potentially do in the after half term. Artists such as  Käthe Kollwitz caught my interest – I liked her chiaroscuro prints of charcoal drawings ‘centred on women and the working class’(Mahler, 2016). The iconography of death is there too, which was interesting, with the use of the skull. I agree with Kollwitz’s opinion of painting against drawing, too (something I can draw out in my FMP): she ‘defended the exacting art of drawing over the free form of painting’. The black and white approach and the gothic approach seem way in the past at this point for any future development, though (I’ve saturated this type of work already).

I then looked to the research done at the start of Unit 5, in contradiction to what I’ve just said, with the V&A research from November. I mentioned then that I really enjoyed Raphael’s cartoons and the process of making them: several pieces of paper bound together by a mixture of flour and water which are then sewn together by tapestry weavers, ‘being cut into one-yard-wide strips and distrubuted to the weavers’.  Seeing as I’m looking to develop my skills in painting, working on my own cartoon (or cartone) and extending the scale of my work seems to be the way to go. We’ve been told to focus on skills that we’ve acquired since September, so that discounts the other image underneath, which, regardless, I liked for its abstracted and experimental, illustrative (like a storyboard) approach; ‘Central Park’ (Pierre Alchenisky, 1965).

Now I need some source material, something other than mainstream politics – maybe something completely different. It must be interesting.

More to come!

My research on the V&A regarding the cartone and Raphael

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Looking in ‘Paintings and Writings, Museum of Art Carnegie Institute’ for different genres of work – Alchenisky’s abstract ‘Central Park’ (1964) being exciting.


Looking in Käthe Kollwitz’s ‘Prints and Drawings’ for some illustrated inspiration.