Exercise 3.6: Photomontage

Blind War

Blind War

My collage is made up of pictures of Barak Obama giving a speech, a man wearing a blindfold, a child holding a stick, an assault rifle, splash of paint, 3 soft toys and a toy plane. The back drop is a grassy field with an isolated, slightly barren tree but I adjusted the levels and saturation so the colour of the clouds look like blooms of smoke from fire and explosions. The adjusted saturation also makes the horizon line look like it’s on fire and blanketed with napalm or airstrikes.

The blindfold around the former president represents the people of power speaking, demanding and commanding war and yet still blinded and somewhat detached by the real damage and horrors of war.

In the sky is an image of a toy plane and this represents armed drones. They are used to fight wars in other countries and I believe can create a detachment from the acts being committed as its controlled like a game remotely.

On the ground, you have 3 toys and they represent dead people. I obscured their faces with a paint splash and adjusted the hue to make it red to signify blood.

To the side, I have a kneeling boy holding an assault rifle. I changed the levels and saturation to give the boy a more menacing look and replaced the stick in his hand into a rifle. I adjusted the rifle and increased its highlights till it became pure white, this is to create a stark contrast with the rest of the image. The gun is highlighted to show one of the deadliest inventions which has changed war from close range combat to long range warfare. A young boy represents how the army is full of young people due to the glamour of war and the kneeling shows submission to the higher ups.

Exercise 3.5: Abstract Cities

I created a series of 10 abstract designs with blocks of subordinate, dominant and accent colours.

These designs are for the following cities: Madrid Malmo Managua Manchester Manhattan Marrakech Marseilles Melbourne Montreal Mumbai

Madrid

Madrid – capital of Spain, third largest city in EU, third largest metropolitan area in the EU after London and Paris. Gran via is located in the city centre and is known as the Spanish Broadway.  This street is very busy with nightlife, theatre and grand architecture. Madrid is also home to the famous football club Real Madrid. The city contains modern infrastructure but has preserved the look of many historic buildings such as the restored Royal Theatre and Buen Retiro Park. Plaza de Cibeles is an iconic symbol for the city and is a complex of fountains and marble sculptures.

Madrid

Malmo

Malmo is the largest city and capital of Sweden and it is one of the first towns of Scandinavia to be industrialised. Almost half of the population is under 35 so it’s a young city. Malmo is surrounded by water and has oceanic climate giving it slightly warmer weather despite its northern location. Turning Torso is a famous residential skyscraper in Sweden which is located in Malmo. Opened in 2005, it is the first “twisting” tower. Oresund Bridge is the longest combined rail/road bridge in Europe and connects Malmo to Denmark.

Malmo

Managua

This city is the capital of Nicaragua which is located in Central America. Nicaragua is a popular tourist destination because of its active volcanoes and warm tropical climate.  The indigenous people of Managua were initially conquered by the Spanish in the 16th century but now it is independent but the main language of the population remains Spanish.  Many native tribes remain. Managua is located on the south west shore of Lake Managua. Managua encountered a devastating earthquake in 1972.

Managua

Manchester

Second most populated urban area in the UK. Port of Manchester links the city to the sea. It is also the world’s first Industrialised city.  Manchester was initially civilised by the Romans in 79AD. Manchester also has vibrant arts, theatrical and music scene. A wide variety of architecture is also present in Manchester.

Manchester

Manhattan

It is a borough in New York City and one of the most densely populated. It is known as the cultural and financial capital of the world due to Wall Street and large stock exchanges being based there. It is located on a small island surrounded by other islands. Manhattan is in New York and originally the home of the World trade Centres (Twin Towers) until they were taken down in a terrorist act. New York is also home to the famous yellow taxis and Times Square.

Manhattan

Marrakech

Marrakech is an old fortified city packed with souks (vendors and their stalls). It has French and Arab culture due to its mixed history from Islam and French colony. It is a popular tourist destination in Africa. It is also located near the Atlas Mountains and many of the inhabitants of Marrakech are Berber Farmers. The buildings are coloured red and the weather can be hot. Jemaa el-Fnaa is a popular tourist attraction; it is a square courtyard with market stalls, colours, smells, spices and entertainers with African drums and snakes.

Marrakesh

Marseilles

It is a city located in south France. It has the largest port for commerce in France and is popular tourist location due to its warm humid weather and beaches next to the Mediterranean Sea.

Marseille

Melbourne

Capital of Australia.  Warm summers and cool winters.  Hoddle Grid – centre of business district. Financially and economically strong. Urban.

Melbourne

Montreal

Canada. French speaking. Humid summer and windy , snowy winter. Factories, warehouses, some old buidlings, residential. Mount royal park, large green space.

Montreal

Mumbai

Hot, busy, capital, Bombay,  colours, culture, Bollywood.

Mumbai

Exercise 3.2 Signs and Symbols

The colour red is used for danger and used for love. I think the reason why there is a cross over is because of the shared origin in using the colour red to represent these feelings. Red in love represents the red from a red heart and that red originates from the colour of blood and this is the crossover into symbolism for danger because blood can indicate harm, a wound/cut, seeing red when someone gets angry, and blood rushing to the head making them red. Other things which are red but do not share the same sentiment is a red rose and a red devil.

Below is my sketch book containing my ideas, sketches, notes and mind map.

My final design. I came up with this idea by combining as many dangerous things into one image to create a single cohesive image. It is a red snake with a switch blade for its head and a lightening bolt for a tongue and its slithering in darkness through grass made of fire.

knife-snake
Knife Snake

Exercise 3.1: Visual Diary

When I look at the images I have collected I can see a trend in images that contain character design and creative visual imagery. I like imagery with a strong contrast in colours or a darker colour palette. I enjoy drawing and since young I have been designing and drawing cartoon characters and so because of this I think I appreciate character artwork more than landscape or abstract.

I enjoy creativity in design and clever composition. I enjoy collecting movie posters and fan made artwork. I am very much influenced by the media I consume such as Hollywood and Japanese anime and this is reflected in the images I have collected. I was born in the 80s and brought up in the 90s and these years also play a big part in my designs and the artwork that resonate the most with me. I am open minded and can enjoy art and design from various cultures, genres and sub genres.

You can find the images I have collected over the web on the link below. https://uk.pinterest.com/shahjmiah/pins/

PART 3: Visual Language – research point 1

Research – Yoshitomo Nara

http://www.artnet.com/artists/yoshitomo-nara/

I have looked at the work of Yoshitomo Nara based on recommendation. To me his art based on children are subtly unnerving maybe because of my fear of the movie Children of the Corn (1984). I like his artwork especially the artwork linked below. It is a simple yet effective piece of design. It reminds me of a passport photo of a child staying still, looking forward and unable to smile so to meet the requirements of a passport photo. This girl seems to be a prominent figure in his drawings or little girls of a similar nature, short hair, wide eyed and big foreheads.

I notice this image has perfect symmetry and it seems that it’s a half a child with a mirror reflection representing the other half and this creates an unusual gap size between her eyes. The eyes are the centre piece to this design. The girl has very big dark eyes and they seem to portray sadness. The eyes are also very wide apart making the girl look unnatural which adds to the weirdness. She has a big forehead and with the blank stare it makes me think she has psychic powers. The nose on the girl is represented as two dots and again this makes the girl look weird as she seems more like a snake then a human. The colours used are earthy colours and this also gives of a feeling of gloom. To me this girl represents a sad orphan but I’m sure it meant something else for Yoshitomo Nara as this image is named Cosmic Girl Eyes Open but art like this can be open to interpretation and this is mine.

Cosmic Girl Eyes Open, 2008

SBI Art Auction Co., Ltd.

http://www.artnet.com/artists/yoshitomo-nara/cosmic-girl-eyes-open-sirXbzvq522-OH5gTWoUfw2

Research – David Shrigley

Through recommendation I am looking at the work of David Shrigley on his official website. I am looking at his work to be inspired to loosen my drawing technique. I can see that his drawings are using either pastel colours or black ink on white paper. They remind me of the sketches and doodles I did in school with a pen.

His drawings have people and animals with loosely defined limbs, and white eyes (no pupil or iris). The drawings seem intentionally crude and the men he draws are normally nude with weird facial features and elongated noses.

His drawings seem to be childlike but sinister at the same time. He has a drawing of an oversized spider standing over a nude man who is laying down (fig 1)and then he also has a drawing of a man smiling with glee as he holds a torn leg from a spider (fig 2).

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Fig 1 – David Shrigley, title unknown (Source – http://davidshrigley.com/category/drawing-painting/ – 2013)

 

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Fig 2 – David Shrigley, title unknown (Source – http://davidshrigley.com/category/drawing-painting/ – 2013)

Bibliography

Children of the Corn (1984) Initial release: 9 March 1984 (USA), Director: Fritz Kiersch, Story by: Stephen King

List of Figures

Fig 1 – David Shrigley (drawing from 2013), title unknown – retrieved on Jan 2017 from http://davidshrigley.com/category/drawing-painting/

Fig 2 – David Shrigley (drawing from 2013), title unknown – retrieved on Jan 2017 from http://davidshrigley.com/category/drawing-painting/