Babies and Progress.

Week 36


In class I had a chance to talk with my lecturer about my ideas for my project, and she was quite happy with what they were, and also gave me the idea of using Celtic designs throughout the work. I also did the image transfers that I had printed off.


So my plan for this week concerning Transformation, was to get everything finished, so I could concentrate on pathways before I went on holiday for the May weekend. (Spoiler – that didn’t happen) I was going to work on this on my Wednesday and Thursday off, and then the weekend, I did get a chance to get a lot done over the weekend, however my sister had a baby on Wednesday, so I was severely distracted over those two days with becoming an auntie.

On the weekend I was able to finally finish off some of my annotation and some sketchbook pages, I then worked on some of my more final pieces. I stretched paper so I could put a watercolour background for one of them, I tried to make the paper look old and decayed, so I used brown watercolours and also added in some ink splashes. When this had dried, I used ink to draw some images of decay, I then added roots to these drawings to show that for life to continue, we need decay, so decay  is feeding of life, and life is feeding on decay. I also had a page in my sketchbook I covered in leaf skeletons for a textured background. I used acrylic to paint a rotting flower over the top.

Contextual studies

Our lecture this week was on writing the essay, which i will hopefully begin soon. I also started to think on my essay proposal, which will be submitted next week.

See you next time-
Róisín -x


Easter Break

So I had a kind of productive two weeks, though not as productive as I’d hoped, but still it”s more than what I normally do on holidays, which is when I look at the stuff I should be doing and think to myself “I should probably be doing that right now” and then go on the internet. However this time around I think I balanced my time better, but there is definitely still room for improvement.


So the first thing that I did over Easter turned out to be a bit of a disaster. My plan was, since my grandad immigrated from Ireland via boat I was going to incorporate salt into my work somehow. So I did a few saw tests which i was going to go over in different media to see what effects they had , which turned out okay. I then mixed in salt with poster paint, and my idea was to paint with it, and this turned out pretty good, I think it looked quite cool and had a really good texture. I then left it to dry, once it was dried the salt was a bit flaky so I needed to seal it, so I sealed it using PVA glue. And this is where my plan disintegrated. So it turns out that adding glue to this mixture of poster paint and salt, not only makes the paint go gloopy, but creates water, and I didn’t actually notice what happened until I went to put my sketchbook near the radiator so it would dry quicker, and poured water down myself. This meant that the water took ages to dry out, and also soaked through the page and on to the next one, which I just happened to have stuck down things to do with one of the artists, and all the ink that I had written in had bled all over the page. So after a week all I had achieved in this topic was a salty, soggy sketchbook.

As well as this salt test, I glued in some salt squares which I tried different media on them to see the different effects. I like the effect the ink and the watercolours gave.

I also made a collage of newspaper headlines, which were words or sentences that are related to my grandad, as this  was how he initially learnt how to read a few words. I also reserved some books from the library which are immigrant stories. 
Since I was looking at trying to make my book into some sort of map, I looked put the few that are lying about my joust. My plan is to split the book into nine sections, and each of these sections will be one page of the book. I will hopefully be able to fold these pages, so that when you are looking through the book you will be able to open out the different pages. I’m also hoping to be able to incorporate sound into the boom somehow, as one of the ways my grandad reminisced about Ireland was through singing songs, also I want to try and use the sounds that he would have heard on the boat going to Scotland. 
I plan to so some image transfers, with some of the photographs I have in my sketchbook. I wanted to make them darker, so that when they were transfers, they would be clear. So I edited the brightness and contrast, and also dodged and burned some areas to create these.

 I think that these turned out pretty well, as the images appear to be of higher quality.


For this I caught up with almost all of the annotation, which I left to the minute once again, I don’t have that much to do now so hopefully I will be able to complete this next week. I also tried out a couple more bookmaking templates as I only had the ones that I had done during class in my sketchbook.
I also started to brainstorm some ideas for my final piece, and decided to paint a ribcage that is being rotted by wood mould.

See you next time-
Róisín -x

Journey (Update 4)

I have done some research on artists who look at travel, and immigration. Some of these artists were Sylvia de Swaan and her project return:

Ivan Navarro’s installation in Madison Square Park about immigration called “This Land is Your Land”

Aileen Bassis’ work for a project called Immigration


And also John Dilnott, who has some pieces on bird migration, which was a concept that I wanted to look at for this project.‎

I tried to work out the time line of events in my granddad’s life, which is quite hard to figure out, because I’m reling on other people to remember what happened, or what he said happened. so there is a bit of speculation in it. I also mapped out the journey that he made to get to the ferry, the journey the ferry made and then the route he would have taken to get to Falkirk.
Another aspect that I thought about looking at in my book is his senses and emotions whilst he was on the boat. Eg feelings, and smells etc.
I also found some old photographs of my grandad and my family.

The next post I’ll write will be just before i go back to college about the stuff I’ve done over the Easter break, so I’ll see you then-

Transformation (Update 3)

So we had a mid module tutorial, which I was kinda nervous about because I felt like I hadn’t worked on stuff for transformation in ages. I let this project slip because I had deadlines for other stuff, and so I always felt that I had to work on my deadlines, rather than transformation stuff. So I felt that I was a bit behind on this, especially with my annotation, which I always leave until the last minute. This was really my main area for improvement, so I need to catch up with this over the Easter break.
On the Friday before Easter, I finally finished my car illustration, and all I need to do now is flatten it, and then I will be able to upload it here, because it is still in photo shop format right now.

Only one more update to go 🙂
– Róisín

Presentation (Update 2)

I hate presentations. I get all worked up and panic quite easily. So I wasn’t exactly enthused when I found out that we had to do one. But despite the fact I was panicked, my first attempt actually went quite well. I found that I rushed a tiny bit and had to wait a few seconds for the slide to catch up with me (since it was in Pecha Kucha). I didn’t have to change much of it except have a better conclusion. My original conclusion was kinda improvised when I was practising it, but when it came to saying it in front of people, I panicked and just stopped. So I knew I had to write down what I was going to say, in order for me to kinda calm down when I was speaking.
My final presentation went much about the same as the first, except I slowed down a bit, but not by much as I was still quite nervous. I’m not sure I did that well when it came to the questions, as I think that I rambled a bit about nothing, but I’m still quite happy that I did the best that I could.

My presentation was on Hitler’s degenerate art show, and in this I talked about what I think were his motives for puttin g on the show. Most people assume that it was his hatred for modern art that made him do this, but I think that he knew the power that art and expressionism held. I also mentioned Joseph Stalin, and I also discuss if it worked and some artists that were in the show and their reactions.

Here are some of my slides:

See you soon 🙂 – Róisín

Paintings (Update 1)

So this is an update on all the paintings that I have done in the painting class for transformation.                                                                                                                                             This was the first painting that I did, This was just to experiment with using bigger brushes than I’m used to and I also used palette knives. the painting is based on a section that was cut from a photograph of an eye.

For the background I blended in red and yellow, making red more prominent at the bottom and yellow more at the top. To clash with these colours I used blue and green for the painting. I tried to create some texture in this painting, and I think I achieved this, especially in the eyelashes, to do this I used the bottom of the paint brush.

The “canvas” I made was made with wood with sand and sugar glued on to give it texture. I painted all of this a dark green, and then went over it with a lighter green to highlight the sand and sugar.
This made it look like mould, and so I painted the plasmodial slime mould.

For the background, I painted it a bright yellow colour, and then lightly brushed a dark green/ blue colour to highlight the wood. I painted this fly and I wanted the legs to stand out, so I painted them white. I don’t really like how this painting turned out.

I didn’t have any blue, so for the background I mixed purple and green, to make a dark blue colour. I wanted a dark colour because I wanted to paint a simplistic painting of a rib cage and mainly use white for this. I used a touch of the colour i used for the background with white for the bones that are more in the background to give the painting more depth.
Out of the paintings that I did, I like this one the best, purely because it is so simplistic.
This painting was based on my study of rotting nectarines. For the mould I dabbed the paint on, as the mould had stared growing from circles. I was more expressive with the more developed mould and tried to flick the paint brush more, to make it appear furry.
For this background I put a few strokes of acrylic and then wet my paintbrush a lot. The water spread the paint more thinly and created a wave like effect. For the painting of the rotting flower, I used smaller brushes, which I am much more used to. I feel that using the smaller brushes enables me to get more detail into the painting and I can create tone much easier. I like the painting, though I’m not sure if it goes with the background or not.
For this painting I tried to use the paint sparingly to highlight the tone and the texture of the wood I used as a base. I like the effect this gave, as I like the distressed, worn look it has, which fits in with my theme.

         That’s all I have for now 😉
              See you soon – Róisín

Down with the sickness.

So after being sick for a while and trying to catch up on work for transformation, my blog has kind of been left behind. When I was ill, I was basically bed ridden and couldn’t really do much, so everything was put on hold for a while. And also we had a mid module tutorial and so I wanted to try and finish off some stuff.
So my next few posts are just going to be a few updates on what’s been happening since my last post.

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