Monday, 28 March 2011

Illustration Friday - Toy

This week's Illustration Friday was 'Toy'. As soon as I saw the theme, I realised I could explore my new passion for vintage advertising. I created this poster in Photoshop and Illustrator as a tribute to the old fashioned posters of the 40s and 50s. 
On the version above, I added some free dust and paper textures to make the poster look worn (to add to the vintage feel), but the original version with no textures is available to view below:

Monday, 21 March 2011

Illustration Friday - Cultivate

This week's Illustration Friday is 'Cultivate'. Immediately I decided to put my spin on the theme - I had the idea to show a human being caring for herself in the same way we care for plants, which also highlights our vulnerability as a race.
A long time ago, I was a pixel artist, and I decided to revisit my pixel art roots with this piece. I used a lot of neutral greens and beiges to make the image seem natural and green to fit the message.

Thursday, 17 March 2011

Illustration Friday - Stir

This week's Illustration Friday was 'Stir'. I immediately had the idea to play on the word, and use the idea of stirring from sleep, as opposed to the action of stirring something.
I also tried a very simplistic colour scheme, deciding to use purer, more pastel blues to illustrate the freshness of the morning. Since I left a lot of white on this image, it was very hard to add a background that didn't distract from the image.

Thursday, 10 March 2011

Illustration Friday - Warning

This week's Illustration Friday theme was 'Warning'. My idea was to take the traditional 'Warning' sign, and use it to warn of something different, like the nudity of my subject. Censorship is something I feel really strongly about and I like making art that reflects my views. I also tried a different feel to this piece, trying a different hair colour and overall colour scheme to contrast the bright sign.

Monday, 7 March 2011

An Analytical Review of the Work of Francis Bacon

‘The job of the artist is always to deepen the mystery’
                                                                                                            - Francis Bacon
Francis Bacon is a painter who is famous for his surreal, harsh, expressionist portraits of the human condition. His work reflects some of the deepest emotions he felt during his life, and I plan to analyse these in my essay.

Francis Bacon’s works are striking portraits of his subjects in states of emotional - sometimes physical – pain, and though he denies his personal connection to the subject matter, many parallels can be found between his work and his life. After the death of his lover George Dyer, he painted ‘Triptych’ which featured Dyer vomiting and hanging over a toilet as he neared his death.
Bacon’s models were always friends, lovers or fellow artists, along with some self portraits. In the 1950s he also worked exclusively from photographs he found in newspapers, often combining them with works from old ‘master’ painters.
Bacon’s deep connection to his models and his subject matter was always conveyed in his style of painting which was often dark, with each stroke placed with power and emotion. His subjects are sometimes placed in small rooms without windows, which further conveys emotions of loneliness and isolation.

                  Bacon states Picasso as one of the biggest influences for his paintings: “Picasso is the reason why I paint. He is the father figure, who gave me the wish to paint”.  His work follows a surrealist style, and his odd take on perspective can be traced back to Picasso’s portraits. Bacon uses rags, dust and his own hands in addition to paint and brush, which gives his work a different texture and style as a result.
Works like ‘Head VI’ are noticeable for their dusty paint quality, especially towards the end of the strokes. The strokes are also quite violent where they pull away from the face, almost like the head itself has been pulled out of shape and the subject is screaming in pain. The viewer can only stare at the mouth, with no eyes to assist the face in conveying emotion. It’s quite painful to look at for too long, as I find a lot of Bacon’s works are, simply because of the pure, unaltered, raw pain in each piece he creates. However, Bacon has stated that “my painting is not violent; it’s life that is violent”, which to me states that anyone who is uncomfortable looking at his work is probably uncomfortable facing the harsh reality of life itself. This is a very strong message to leave with his audience.

                  In conclusion, I find Francis Bacon’s work to be a deeply moving statement on the meaning of pain and the emotions of the human condition, but I find them very hard to look at for too long. His techniques do not really interest me, as I find surrealism quite hard to grasp, but I am always drawn to his images based on the pain of his subjects and his portrayal of that pain in his work. His work will always live on because it addresses a subject that is totally relatable – pain.

Tuesday, 1 March 2011

Illustration Friday - Swarm

This week's Illustration Friday was 'Swarm', and I had the idea to try my hand at typography. Instead of the  traditional swarm of bees, flies or locusts, I decided to make my image out of lots of butterflies. I really love typography, and I'd like to explore it further in my future work.
Pick of the Week - Thank you so much :]

Skull Drawing 2

This is a graphic, illustrative styled drawing of the skull below. I did this in pencil, with lines in graphics pen and the background in ink. I like this piece, but I would have liked to have added hints of one bright colour to offset the harshness of the black and white.

Skull Drawing

This is a drawing of a skull I created in my Visual Studies at college.
I was given a skull and made small visual sketches of it, before using chalk and charcoal on black paper to create the whole skull.
I like this piece because it took a long time to get the shading to look right, and the shapes are all similar to the original skull I drew from. I dislike the centre of the drawing (where the nose would be) because I had to finish it quickly and I found the shapes very complicated and hard to draw.