Student Review of Course
In committing all my energies to this Course I was seeking to develop three broad outcomes:
1. a strong personal painting style.
2. a consistent quality in my painting;
3. a more professional work ethic.
1. Painting Style: At the outset I designed for myself an engaging work plan which has taken me on a great adventure starting with a reprise of where I had already got to in my painting with expressive figure compositions; the exploration of ‘pure’ abstract forms; a narrowing down to focus on how ‘feelings and emotions’ could be expressed in paintings; and finally bringing all this knowledge together in a suite of paintings personifying the planets in our Solar System in a semi-abstract manner.
In doing so I have allowed myself time to explore different use of materials and approaches, for example, the mixed media ‘action painting’ of my Scherzo Polyptych; the free expression of painting emotions in my Facial Feelings set; and the telling of stories in my planets personifications which was painted while listening to Gustav Holst’s Planets Suite. With this body of work a strong personal style has emerged.
2. Consistency: The confirmation of a painting process which suits my own personality and strengths was important in achieving all of this, and any time I strayed away or tried to cut corners resulted invariably in difficulties. This process would start with a basic idea which could then be researched in books and on the internet making notes in a Notebook and drawing images in a Sketchbook which would then be developed through composition and colour studies in Sketchpads, value studies and colour studies in paint to larger a scale, before finally committing to painting the final piece. Nothing new there for an artist but I have made it my working process and providing me with the greatest likely-hood of achieving success in my painting.
3. Professional Working: Coming from a professional working background it was not difficult for me to re-establish the protocols of professional life with letter writing, arranging meetings with the tutor, setting Agendas, note-taking and issuing reports. Prior to this Course these things had been somewhat disregarded. It is good to know I still have the capability and how important these things are when dealing with other professional people.
Also, since in my previous working life work started at 9am and finished around 6pm, I accepted that this was ‘normal’ for me and I re-established this for my artistic endeavours. This enabled me to put in full working days that helped me achieve all that I have in this Course and given me a great sense of satisfaction each day.
Finally: It was originally my intention to complete this Course within one year, and that was achievable at the pace I set, however, it didn’t take into account the death of my father and my subsequent loss of focus and motivation preventing me from working for at least three months. It was difficult to get back into the Course after that but I am pleased to say I have been able complete this Course as strongly as I started.