Assignment 2 – Reflection on tutor’s feedback

I received a very comprehensive and constructive feedback that I am satisfied with. Many comments were quite aligned to my own feelings to my works – although I was not always able to phrase them in the right context for myself. I had the chance to have a follow up skype call with my tutor to clarify some topics.  I am very glad for her taking the time

My thoughts based on feedback received

  1. I think I were more successful when I applied a fresh and loose painting approach and interrogated materiality of paint through exploration of texture, transparency, and opacity
  2. I believe I am more creative when I am not get overwhelmed by huge variety of media or colours. Less is more.
  3. Work more in paint in my sketchbooks and loose sheets of papers and avoid to ‘over-think’
  4. Build on at time daring and more convincing pre work in my sketchbook for my larger scale paintings (stretched or others)
  5. Work more with a loose approach with less planning ahead, a kind of sensing while doing where it goes, to keep a fresh approach. I believe this would allow me also to be more exploratory with paint and surface (e.g P3Ex5)
  6. Looking more at simplicity
  7. Exploring more texture, transparency, and opacity with my painting approach
  8. Not to rely on prep drawings (or not only)
  9. My tutor suggested me to explore the following subject matters further: Interior, also empty rooms as a mean to  show human presence (metaphorically)
  10. Further exploration of muted and/or broken colour
  11. Exploration of quick and slow painting approaches (especially in context of figure painting)
  12. To leverage more my learnings from part 1 and part 2 for the next parts
  13. Less evaluation of wide options but working more focused in scope of exercises and more time on actually doing painting
  14. Elaborate visual effects of space that allows the observer to ‘enter the painting‘ (see sketchbook #4 – p.37)
  15. Keeping my curiosity high during the painting process – as this avoids creation of rather deprived paintings

My tutor suggested as contextual research:

  • Black and muted dark painting: besides applying several washes or a mix of e.g. umbra and blue (what I did in part 1): Mark Rothko, Walter Sickert, Louise Wallace, Lynette Yiadom-Boakye
  • Muted light paintings (white): Gwen John, Euan Uglow
  • Depicting texture in paint: Richard  Diebenkorn, Edouard Vuillard
  • Tools: Jasper Johns, Lisa Milroy
  • Interior: Johannes Vermeer, Francis Bacon, Edouard Vuillard, Pierre Bonnard, Gwen John
  • Elaborate further Luminosity (as done partly in my sketchbook #1): Kaye Donachie, Pierre Bonnard
  • More graphic exploration of positive negative shapes into colour translation (my sketchbook #4 – p37) : Euan Uglow
  • Suggested reading: John RuskinElements for Drawing  – letter 3′

Comment on life painting:

Life drawing/painting class: I did attend one from Aug 2015 till Feb 2016. I have to see how I can get hold of a model in Switzerland. Otherwise more self-portraits? Or photographs?

I embarked on a parallel project for myself: ‘Daily Self-Portraits’ . With that I will use myself as a subject matter for fresh, experimental, and loose exploratory painting approaches. I will keep this at least till assignment 3. Available at: http://ocapainting1.stefanschaffeld.com/?cat=64


Summary of feedback report:

My strong points:

  • Most successful paintings from part 2 (in that order):
    P3Ex5 ‘Still life – colour and mood’: technically a mature study, fluid handling, exploration of texture and transparency and opacity, building on part 1, successful emotive visualization ‘dreamlike’
    => This painting was truly to my heart of painting, intimate, investigative and exploratory
    P3Ex4 ‘Still life – complementary colors’: conveying the same freshness as in my sketchbooks.
    => These two work with quite limited pallet (just two colors plus white) made me more inventive and creative. Curious to see how the painting evolved. I take from here that I need to maintain my curiosity high during painting process
    P2Ex1 ‘Drawing in paint’ : Inventive use of colour for contour lines. Although my sketchbook prep work was more daring and convincing
    => I like the combination of loose strokes in combination with a quite realistic outcome. Something I need further to develop and I think that my parellel project ‘Daily Self-Portraits’ will be beneficial for that.
  • Sketchbook work: freshness, convincing (a continuation from my previous course unit. Especially exploration of compositional alternatives, cleaning utensils, tools, understated or unfinished touch of some studies (sketchbook #4-p37) “when ink bleeds into tone a good way converting drawing into paint” – During part 1 I was not so convinced how to use my sketchbooks. During part 2 I found back to my more creative and inventive approach with sketchbooks.
  • Subject matters: tools, emotive paintings (blurring, expression)
    => I find that my different approach and new perspective on these subject matters allowed my to be more creative and the process as such guided me through.
  • Colour theory testing
    =>  Although I did quite some testing, I still need to reconcile how to leverage this in my paintings.
  • Learning log and contextual researches. Although at time too broadly done –
    => I agree completely.

My main areas for development:

  • Least successful paintings from part 2:
    P2Ex2 ‘Still life with flowers’: too dominant background in black, unbalanced composition
    => Although I ‘planned’ this composition meticulously as I intended to convey a disturbing and at times non comfortable picture – Have to see how I can work on that more successfully. I understand that painting black, the void needs more attention and depth. Applying several layers/washes would be more intriguing (see Louise Wallace and Mark Rothko or Helen Frankenthaler)
    – P2Ex4 ‘Still life with man-made objects’: too bottom-heavy, center plate badly integrated stylistically, although prep works intriguing for its simplicity and as less recognizable objects when zoomed in
    => I agree that this painting made me uncomfortable and I sensed that there was a major flaw)
    P3Ex3 ‘Still life – colour accuracy‘: loosing some texture and linear qualities from my prep work in sketchbook
    => I agree that I tended to ‘wash away some marks with paint – a kind of overworking habit)
    P4Ex1 ‘Interior’: rather a colored drawing as I am relying on my prep drawings
    => I agree as this was truly rather a colored sketch and not adding something new compared to the prep drawing)
  • Sketchbooks work is at times more daring and confident. I need to bring this up to my stand-alone paintings in order to become more creative and convincing

Assignment 2:

My strong points:

  • Developmental / tonal studies and reflection on composition
  • Technical preparation
  • More successful when I am applying a looser, freer and more expressive approach
  • Well executed wineglass in ‘night painting’ – that one more consistent in stylistic approach

My main areas for development:

  • To work more intuitively, less planning ahead
  • Assignment development can help to realize my creativity
  • ‘Day painting’ less successful due to lack of coherency
  • Relying on black, consider different approaches learning from Mark Rothko and Walter Sickert

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