Sunday, March 11, 2012

Part Two: Project 3 - What have I achieved?

I have stitched till my hands and wrist hurt, mixed colours till my eyes were confused.
What have I achieved?.... a lot of work, a great record of colour mixing in stitch and paint, and an increased confidence in my ability to work my way through the projects.
Did I enjoy working with colour and was I able to mix and match colours accurately?
I did enjoy working with colour and I was able to mix and match colours accurately.

I worked happily through these exercises, even when my eyes began to tire of looking so hard at the colours in front of them. 

I particularly liked Stage 3, Exercise 1 - when you add white, black, grey and the complementary to the primary colour - I created enough tints, tones and shades that the colours extended beyond the page.

I also found great value in the colour matching exercises - stage 3, ex 2, 3 & 4.
You had to look hard and observe the colours that were represented in fabric, paper and 3D objects.
Once the paints were dry you could assess whether the colours you had mixed really worked - and whether you had  really looked hard enough.

Although I did paint my 3D objects as things, I did develop the images I made.
I was very pleased with the result and created a warm range of colours from the red background, and a cool range from the blue background.
It was an interesting exercise and really makes you think about the importance of placing different objects and colours next to each other.

Was I able to use colour expressively?
I was able to use colour expressively. 
I expressed myself in my colour choices and used expressive marks and colour in the 'opposite words' exercise.

As you progress through project 3, you are asked to really think about what you like in terms of colours you warm to, what type of art you prefer.

These exercises were all designed to make you question your choices.

I have never worked using colour bags and thread wraps - but having been persuaded to start thinking this way, I should be better prepared to start designing and developing pieces.

I found the opposite word exercise Stage 4, exercise 1, hard but enjoyed the results that I made. Completing this exercise shows the unexpected results that you can produce when experimenting and doodling - must do more! 

Did the exercises help me to really see colour instead of accepting what I thought I saw?
Yes, I think it did. 
The research I did into the impressionists work helped me to see how colour works and the illusions that can be created.

That sometimes an illusion of brightness and darkness can be created by changing the arrangement of the marks of colour. 
That your eye is able to mix the colours that appear on paper and fabric. 

The colour mixing exercises in paint and stitch helped to put the theory into practice.

Did I prefer working with watercolours or gouache paints?
Gouache for the initial colour mixing exercises, watercolour for the later samples.

What was the difference?
Gouache was great at covering the white paper, it is flat, opaque, clean and easy to mix and use.
It was perfect for creating the colour wheel and the exercises where black, grey, white and complementary colours were added to the primary colour.
The samples created using this paint have an even colour without whiteness from the paper showing through.

Watercolour is translucent, layers well and can be difficult to use.
The effects when used correctly are beautiful, they have a lightness and depth that gouache does not have.
This was my favourite medium to use for the later exercises, for example, 3D objects, as I was able to build up layers of washes to intensify the colours.

How successful were the colour exercises in Stage 5? Were they more or less interesting than the painting exercises?
I initially thought too hard about this exercise, the problem of having written instructions to a visual medium.
Once I started stitching the exercise seemed to fall into place.

I worked and worked creating as many different aspects as I could think of: changing the proportions of colour; alternating the colours in varying proportions etc.

I liked working against the black background, it showed the colours well.
Using two primary colours of equal intensity for these exercises was hard on the eyes.

I had enjoyed the painting exercises a lot: you had to observe closely and paint the colours you saw.
The samples were quicker to make and the results were self evident - if the colours didn't match when dry - re-paint.

I think the colour exercises in stage 5 were very successful, I think they were harder than the painting exercises, but the results were just as interesting.

I liked the colour mixing in Stage 6, exercise 1 & 2 more than Stage 5 

If I enjoyed them more, were there any factors that made them more exciting?
I enjoyed the colour mixing in stitch in Stage 6 the most.

The results were unexpected and pleasing to the eye.
The textures and the use of different threads and yarns added something to the finish and the look of the sample.

The results were exciting because you saw the illusion of the colours changing, that the yellow you had just stitched with became orange, when placed near a red.

I still love looking at the samples I made for Stage 6. 

Am I pleased with what I have achieved? Is there anything I would like to change or develop? 
I am pleased with what I have achieved.
I learned a lot and have produced a significant body of samples for this project.

I would have liked to have tackled the last part of Stage 6 differently, kept the sample smaller and perhaps been able to work on more than 1 sample.

I am going to keep a record of the areas that I identified with the viewing frame to sample at a later date, and I'm going to follow the advice and lessons set out in Gwen Hedley's book 'Drawn to Stitch' more closely in future.
I think I am learning (slowly) that I must keep it simple   

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