Art 2 Final Portfolio

1. Which project was your most successful? Describe the theme and or topic and the process you went through to complete the project. Were the choices you made regarding material, size, technique, etc. beneficial to enhancing this project. Please explain.

This year I thought I had some very successful projects that I actually didn't think were going to be successful. The one that I liked the most and was most satisfied with was the chalk pastel of softballs. The theme for this project was up close and personal, and for this project we were to work on creating emphasis and a focal point of our artwork. Before I started on this project and you were going over the mini lessons to
get us introduced to the medium, you had mentioned something about how the chalk pastels are very bright colors and I thought that would be very beneficial to the theme by creating contrast and isolation. At first when we were experimenting with all the different mediums chalk pastel was one of my least favorites; it was very messy and I had trouble layering the colors on, i did like how the medium blended though. For this project you suggested taking your own pictures and I tried to focus my ideas on things I had and then I thought back to bright colors and chose the softballs. I practiced the chalk pastel and I was liking how the colors were working and decided to go with it. The whole project took a lot of time and patients because I really had to just focus one one at a time and get the highlights and lighting right. I had to also go back a lot and touch up the overall project; I feel that all the time and effort I put into it made it a lot more satisfying on how it turned out. When it came to the background I had no idea what I was going to do and really looked towards my peers to give me suggestions. When someone mentioned grass I really didn't want to do it, the softballs already took a lot of time and i felt that grass would just be a pain to do and try to get it looking realistic. Once I got the hang of it and experimented with different colors I was really starting to like it, it was also one of the major things that I got complemented on for this piece. In the end I am glad that I went with grass because I felt that it really enhanced the contrast of the bright softballs to bring attention to the softballs but still be a main factor of the piece. I really glad I stuck with the decisions I made and I thought the piece turned out really good and successful.

2. Discuss one project where you felt you were the least successful. Explain how you felt this way . What would you do differently to change this piece? Explain.

I honestly hated this piece and the more I worked on it the more it was making me frustrated with the way it was coming out. This project we were working with mixed media and I struggled a lot with this unit. I learned throughout the semester from looking at my work compared to my peers work that I liked realistic shapes, drawings, and paintings; I learned this most from this project though. When we started this project I
had a lot of trouble thinking of an idea because I thought the examples that you showed us were very creative and outside of the box. I tried forcing this project to be more random that would be viewed as creative, when in the end I felt I couldn't grasp the concept that well and I thought my final project just turned out really unsatisfying in the end. Which really is a shame because I thought my mini project with this unit didn't turn out that bad. The theme of the final was really anything, but two of the topics mentioned was fear and amusement. Trying to think creatively I thought of a clown because I really don't like clowns yet some people think they're funny. I really liked how tearing the magazines worked with this unit so I focused on this, but it turned out to be a problem when it came to skin. I think when I started on the skin is when i really started disliking the piece, it was turning more creepy than creative. For this project I would probably just overall pick a different topic, I had a lot of plans for this piece in my head, but they never turned out the way I wanted them to on paper. Throughout class I felt very self-conscious about this piece and didn't really want anyone to see it. I thought throughout this whole project that it  was very unsuccessful and trying to go out of my comfort zone just didn't work for this project. Even though trying something new didn't work out for this project I'm glad that it made me realize the direction that I like my art to go to.

3. Look at your body of work over the semester and choose 2 pieces that show your growth as an artist. Discuss each piece and how you grew in the following areas: application of materials, techniques and skills, artistic vision, use of principles and elements, creativity, intuition and subject matter.

For my two pieces, I kind of went as expected, I chose the first project, the ice cube, and the project towards the end, the fallen ice cream cone. Even though these are both in my top three favorite pieces that I did this semester, I still think they contrast in creativeness and technique. Focusing on application of material and techniques and skill; for the ice cube I was still a very structured artist and when we did the stippling I loved the meticulousness of it and the simplicity of the medium. I got a hang of not adding "tails" to my dots and I thought this project was very good and really like the outcome. The ice cream was done towards the end of the year and i thought for this project you could really notice how much I had changed and really focused on flow. I even started painting with a palette knife, getting a different outcome and breaking away from the usual pencil, pen, and paint brush. How these projects develop creatively, for
the ice cube I didn't have a background, and I know with stippling its kind of hard to have a background when dealing with dots and trying to include color. But for my painting I was trying to decide what background to do and I thought I ended creating a whole story by putting my scene in a diner, rather than just painting the ground. Regarding my progress in the use of elements and principles and intuition and subject matter, for the ice cube I actually messed up my value and personally I think its really noticeable and I really wished I could do this one again and fix it. For the ice cream I really focused in on value and it's everywhere, in the cone, in the ice cream, and on the backdrop, I thought it came out more successful than the ice cube and I think I became more aware of where i need to place highlights and focus light. Despite the skill level between the two I still really love these two and they were some of my favorites.

4. Choose 2 mini lessons that you felt were the most beneficial in your learning for that particular project. Include photos of these and explain thoroughly. Do you feel you needed more instruction for success? Explain or did you feel that the instruction given was enough to ensure success? Explain.

For the first mini project I chose the chalk pastel mini lesson with the candies. Before this lesson and class I had never used chalk pastel, I didn't even know it was a thing. This lesson I felt introduced me to what the chalk pastel could do. During this lesson we were given candies wrapped in plastic and were to draw it. The hardest part of this was getting the wrapper right, I think it could have turned out better, but I still like the overall thing. I learned of the chalks abilities like how well it blends and the layering of it. I felt that I didn't need more instruction, this lesson introduced me to the medium and I ended up using it on my project, so I feel it was very beneficial. For the second mini project I chose the mixed media mini lesson. I've already talked about how I really didn't like
this unit because it was so hard, but I really like the direction I was going in with this mini lesson. We got to pick two themes to choose from and I got stars and the day in the life of the future. I thought the two went well together so I combined them. I didn't get a chance to finish this project but I was hoping to put a bunch of modern day buildings and skyscrapers on the moon with an astronaut at the park. I enjoyed experimenting with foreground and putting things before others. I choose to talk about this project because even though I didn't like the unit it did introduce me to new things, like the candy wrapper. The candy wrapper may have worked out better for me but I still appreciated the mixed media lesson. I think there could have been more instruction but I feel like mixed media is very independent so I don't know if that was really necessary. I think people in the class either loved it or hated it. I really like how this was turning out and I ended up trying to fix the bottom and that's why it's kind of ripped up, but I hope to continue this and finish it!

5. What medium was your favorite to work with? Explain.

My top 3 mediums are kind of expected because it's what my favorite pieces were made out of, but for this question I was choosing between paint, pen and ink, and chalk pastel. I felt that paint was very basic and I love all the different things you can do with paint but I was introduced to some others that I thought were interesting. By this point i'm choosing between the chalk pastel and the pen, but i'm probably going to have to go with the pen. Drawing with the pen was very challenging for me, like the cross hatch, so I didn't like
drawing with it, but i loved the stippling. I love how easily it could be done, not necessarily easy but how you can go pick up a pen right now an do it, no mess! When we were first introduced to the stippling I went and searched it on google because I had never heard of it before but some of my classmates had. When I saw some of the things people made with stippling I was honestly amazed. This was probably the first medium that i actually researched and spent time looking into and how to work with it. This is a very challenging medium though. Pen and ink is not very forgiving, you cant just paint over it with a brush or keep layering with chalk. I found you have to plan really well and its always better to do the "lighter" parts (dots farther away from each other) and then add more dots where you need value. This was the very first medium I was introduced to this semester and it had quite an impact with me, i'm looking forward to working with it more!

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