There are a lot of things that I’m not sure about with this picture.
I like certain elements of this drawing. The curve and shadow on the cactus, the crease in the spine of the book, the light on the objects at the front. I also created a way of crumbling chalk to give highlights which I preferred to drawing a line with chalk. However, the background is a bit of a mess and the image is too small on the page. I have tried to keep the drawing a bit loose but sometimes, on the edge of the books, I think this is a bit messy. I have also lost some confidence in the composition.
Demonstration of technical and visual skills:
This project has been a steep learning curve as far as materials, techniques and composition are concerned. I was pleased to find materials which were new to me such as oiled charcoal and chalk and in the final piece I have used willow charcoal, oiled charcoal and chalk. I am quite confident in my understanding of drawing tone and highlights although I think there is some way to go in mastering the materials to reflect this.
Quality of outcome:
I think I have carried through an exploration of materials and techniques into the final piece. I was looking to produce a drawing which reflected the tradition of vanitas still life pictures, the human pursuits, the globe, the natural elements, the symbolic ring but was also personal to myself and my family.
Demonstration of creativity
I tried to create a drawing which was both modern and traditional. I am aware that I have barely touched the surface of techniques available to me but with the materials I used, I tried to respond creatively to the different textures and qualities of light and reflection in the surfaces.
I spent a lot of time considering the nature and tradition of still life. A study visit which involved still life drawing was a useful start and gave me ideas about using repetition to explore a subject, looking at Odilon Redon helped me think about working with dark tones and using vigorous techniques to produce highlights, looking at Giorgio Morandi helped me think about composition and negative space while a trip to see Winifred Nicholson at MIMA was interesting when looking at composition and the use of minimal brushwork to suggest a background. Feedback from my tutor and course support also helped.