SKILLS I HAVE IMPROVED ON OVER THE ART FOUNDATION COURSE
- Clay modelling: I feel I have used the ceramics workshop well over the course so far, and really love working with clay. There’s something really intuitive about it, maybe it’s to do with the childhood memories associated with Playdo that make it so deeply satisfying to work with. Last year I only knew a little about the firing process and techniques for pottery, and modelled almost exclusively with polymer clay (similar to plasticine, but hardens in the oven). I love the complex series of procedures involved in ceramics, they somehow make it feel more worthwhile at the end, and you really feel the age of the process. It’s got an interesting ritualistic feel.
- Adobe Illustrator use: Having first used this software when shadowing a graphic designer for work experience, I now feel very confident using a variety of tools and can now do a lot with it. The work experience helped massively, it gave me a head start and allowed me to make progress relatively quickly in terms of using the laser cutter and creating presentation boards. This will no doubt be useful throughout my education and even my career.
- Documentation of artistic processes: Not having a decent camera on my phone makes this quite difficult, as I have to actively source a camera or someone else’s smartphone to take pictures during developmental stages of 3D modelling. However, it has proven very useful when presenting work in my sketchbook, so I will continue to do so.
- Idea generation and evaluation: The way we have been taught to generate ideas is completely different to how I worked previously. During A-level art, a sketchbook would build slowly up to the ‘design ideas’ stage, when you would produce four plans for a final piece. This was often quite irritating – a lot of people knew what they wanted to make by this stage, and the four sketches would frequently be put off until after the project was finished! This misses the whole point of design sketches. The new method of designing suits my way of working much better; brainstorming themes, then coming up with as many different ideas as possible for an outcome of the project, before you start the visual research, thus starting with a large number of clear options for what direction the project could go in.
- Technical drawing and visualisation: Drawing from observation seemed to be the only way forward in A-level art. Nowadays, drawing from imagination is far more important, and I have honed in on my skills in visualising the technical details of a design, particularly when working on my bowerbird puppet.
NOT-SO-SKILLED-SKILLS THAT I WANT TO WORK ON
- Presenting ideas effectively. I have some ideas for making my presentation exciting, potentially involving audience participation…
- Throwing on the wheel (pottery) and obtaining a planned shape, not just going along with whatever the centripetal forces decide they want to do to the clay.
- Drawing from imagination for realistic-looking images of a proposal.
- I’d like to get more comfortable using the workshop machinery, and hopefully incorporate some metal work in my Final Major Project.