conceptual research

anonymous asked:

I am about to be an IB junior and I chose art for my 6th subject. All of us going into IB art were given a packet explaining our summer assignment which is to make 40 high quality IWB pages. But I still have no idea what an IWB page is supposed to be and none of my friends could explain to me what it is because most of them don't know either. I looked through the IWB tag on here and your account popped up so I was wondering if you could explain what exactly an IWB page is 😁

Hello anon! Kudos to you for doing the IB Program and chosing visual arts! Visual Arts has been one of my favorite classes of all time, and I’m grown so much as an artist from taking that class. Good luck to you and your classmates as well!

So your IWB is your investigative workbook, where all your planning for projects, research, and documentation of projects goes. (That’s how I see it, others may define it some other way.) 

NOTE: almost all of these steps should be done in your IWB, and if you try to work hard and thoughtfully about your work, you’ll definitely get 40 quality pages, or more! If you’re not enjoying your work and the process, my general rule of thumb is that you’re doing it wrong.

  1. Brainstorm ideas. Ask yourself: what do I want to achieve with this project? Set realistic goals for yourself. Is your project going to be something technical or more conceptual?
  2. Do preliminary research. Make sure when you do this you insert images and text and reference your sources. Research as in something that is relevant to your idea. Your research should have two components: an art history reference (artist, movement, style, etc.) and a cultural reference. For finding an art history reference I recommend asking yourself: has any artist dealt with the ideas/issues I’m trying to portray in my artwork? Is there an artist that I can learn a certain technique from? Is there an art movement that dealt with the ideas/issues I’m trying to portray in my artwork? Is there any artist I like, and want to know more about? For example: I wanted to work on my technical ability so I planned to do a still life. (Brainstorm) I then began to research famous still life painters, and found myself writing more than three pages on dutch still life painters. (Preliminary esearch) Often your research begins to lead you down a different path than your original idea, which is always a good thing. By the end of Year II (Senior Year) your work should be able to be technically, visually, and conceptually strong, along with it having personal relevance and cultural relevance. Much of the “culture” aspect comes from researching other artists/art movements. If you’re American, examiners love to see non-western art influences. As for a cultural reference this one is a little more tricky because it depends on how you (and the IB) define culture as. Maybe a good starting point for you would be to figure out what culture means to you, and what culture you may want to explore and how. Culture can mean an actual culture such as: consumer culture, Asian/African/Indian culture, or it can be a context in which your art is effected by. My “focus” or “theme” (which I’ll get to) ended up being “Intimacy” and what I found was that there are different forms of intimacy, and today’s definition of “intimacy” and the means by which we become intimate with others is changing due to technology. The IB is looking for you to reach out and look at large world issues, or concerns, and see how your artwork fits into that context.
  3. Start sketching and creating thumbnails. Your first idea/compositional sketch will not be the best, I guarantee you. My rule of thumb is to do a minimum of 3-5 thumbnail sketches, or more until I create a composition that isn’t: boring, typical, and enhances my idea. Some general tips to help you at this stage: 1.) Avoid completely frontal portraits: they’re very typical, and it shows creativity/skill if you show the face from a different angle. 2.) Don’t forget the background! If backgrounds are your weakness, work on them first. Simple colored or patterned backgrounds are very typical, and show that you didn’t really think much about the background. Think about it this way: your subject exists in what environment? I wish I had started out knowing that! 3.) Look at different compositions. If you’re doing a scene, look at how other artists have tried to portray the same thing (write about it with full documentation).
  4. Medium exploration. Depending on what your art background is, you may be confident in a certain medium, such as paint, or you may not be that experienced and have never tried paints before. For me, I had taken many art classes in school but wasn’t very comfortable with any medium. I started out first using ink and digital (such as Photoshop) then making a natural progression with: watercolors, photography, colored pencil, chalk pastels, acrylic paint, and oil pastels. If you’re really strong with using watercolors or collage, USE THEM. If not, take time to explore different mediums, and make projects centralized about trying to use that medium to the best of your ability. As time goes on you will be doing less medium exploration.
  5. The actual project. Make sure to pace yourself. Set reasonable goals for yourself too. Say: I’m going to finish drawing the face today, and tomorrow I’m going to start coloring. Watch out for due dates because crunching things in is really bad for your mental health and more often than not produces bad artwork. Make sure to take work in progress photo’s to print out and paste in your workbook later to show how you progressed.
  6. Documentation: Once a project is done, I document it in my IWB. A documentation page often looks like this:

    I put the title over the photo of the finished product, I write the date when I started and ended, what mediums I uses, the size in both inches and centimeters and the numbers of pages relating to the project. On average you should have AT LEAST 10 pages, more is always good for a project. I then write about the idea behind the project, and talk about my strengths/goals achieved with this project. NEVER EVER WRITE: “I don’t like it.” Be thoughtful about what you write in your IWB and your artwork, and if you don’t like the way it came out, why? What could you have done better? I also write about the process, including work in progress photos. At the end of each documentation, if not written earlier I write about what I could improve on and what I plan on doing next. My documentation is usually 1-2 full pages front to back.

That was probably a lot of information and if a lot of it doesn’t make sense, don’t worry! Hopefully it will! I don’t know how your IB Visual Art’s class in run where you are, but for me I was given a lot of freedom to choose my projects, along with some mandatory things we were assigned.

Some other helpful tips/things to be mindful of:

  • Make sure to print out clear pictures of whatever artist/movement/ reference photo/ etc and paste them into your book. Also, REFERENCE YOUR SOURCES. One great source for finding artists, movement, and cultural things is
  • Number all of your pages in the bottom right hand corner, and make sure you numbered them correctly. This will help when you begin to reference pages later.
  • Write the date in the upper hand right corner.
  • NEVER tear, rip out, skip, or cross out pages. Some pages might be really awful, but at the end of Year II you selected only your best, so don’t worry about anyone seeing those.
  • Don’t skip pages thinking you’ll go back to them and fill them in. Just do everything chronologically.

I hope my information was helpful. In order to get your 40 pages, this summer try to create at least 2-3 pieces of artwork! Good-luck to you! If you have any more questions feel free to ask!

anonymous asked:

Do you get anything done besides answering Tumblr asks? My dash is now 80% WritSrib asks and answers. I can't wait to use your platform, so stop procrastinating here and GET CRACKIN'!! :)

Haha! My job is PR, legal research, conceptualizing, site research, and business management. I can assure you that the members of the team that are working on the stuff you guys really care about are hard at it!

(Also, make sure to blacklist #answers if you don’t want to see all of the answers to asks!)

Day 7: All I think about is dialogue and descriptors

After almost a week of research and conceptualizing, I’ve started some light outlining and map making (I know I said I’d have the map done by the end of the week. Chill. Get off my back). 

However, I’m increasingly getting worried about the quality of my dialogue. I know in past pieces I’ve had problems with my characters sounding like they’re talking to the audience rather than each other. I also have a problem with making character voice sound the same. So, I’ve been working on it.

I’ve started doing a practice exercise when I’m watching TV. Choose something dramatic or very visual (I use Game of Thrones, myself) and in your head, or whatever medium you want, describe the scene as if you were writing it. Season 6, Episode 10 is my favorite episode of any TV show ever. It’s so full of great scene composition (Qyburn sitting in the dark of his lab looking at Pycelle, who he’s about to assassinate), epic music (If you haven’t, go listen to Light of the Seven), and dramatic cinematography(Cersei getting dressed, Margaery in the Sept, Tommens suicide). All visual/aural elements that are really fun and challenging to get into writing on the fly. This also helped me get more comfortable with handling multiple streams of dialogue and switching between unique voices/personalities.

hellbabe-deactivated20160726  asked:

sorry to butt in/if you've talked about this already, but my friend and i were discussing this the other day and if you had time to give your take on it, i'd love to hear it: since sebastian stan was signed up for 9 movies and chris evans for 6, what do you think the chances are that they will kill steve rogers and let bucky barnes take up the shield in mcu? marvel really hasn't been pulling any punches with steve and bucky.

oh yeah, that is on like donkey kong

mcu from cap 1 through cap 2 has invested so much in the bucky + steve dynamic it’s astounding. like, it’s thor + loki levels of: these guys are the beating, broken heart thesis of their entire facet of the mcu.

theorising about the direction of the marvel franchise below the cut + chat about RDJ and Evans and the impact of their respective contracts:

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All Possible Futures

Exhibition Synopsis

Speculative practices have existed throughout the history of design, most notably in architecture, but only a few graphic designers have positioned themselves in contexts where they are able to pursue explorations built on speculation and uncertain ground. This could be the result of numerous unsympathetic conditions deeply rooted in graphic design practice, including the commission structure within which most work happens. Traditionally, a client comes to a designer with a brief, to which the latter responds by offering possible options for solving the already-established problem. When a client has some kind of financial investment in the situation and wants a viable outcome, “What if?” is not often a comfortable starting point. Thus, speculative projects tend be self-initiated efforts, proposals within academic contexts, or simply unrealized inquiries.

All Possible Futures explores speculative work created by contemporary graphic designers. It encompasses everything from self-generated provocations to experimental work created “in parallel” with client-based projects to unique practices where commissions have been tackled with a high level of autonomy and critical investigation. The work highlights different levels of visibility and public-ness within the graphic design process. Some projects were made for clients and exist in a “real world” context, while others might otherwise have gone unnoticed: failed proposals, experiments, sketches, incomplete thoughts.

All Possible Futures also looks at how graphic designers have expanded the parameters of the field by consciously taking a transdisciplinary approach, and by considering physical interaction within an art-gallery context. The featured designers are both American and international, and all of them in one way or another consciously question the established boundaries of design concepts, processes, technologies, and form. They position themselves as authors of autonomous critical projects, and they maintain conceptually rigorous, research-based, historically informed practices.

The installation and exhibition design for All Possible Futures takes on the challenges inherent in presenting any show on graphic design: how to create a new space for graphic design to be understood out of its original context; how to enable visitors to directly engage with the materials on display; how to gather and present a breadth of contemporary speculative pieces, which take the form of both original physical objects and restaged installations; and how to speak simultaneously to peers within the design community and a wider audience.

Invited Designers

Bob Aufuldish
Ludovic Balland
Rachel Berger
Peter Bil’ak
Dexter Sinister
Daniel Eatock
Jaan Evart, Julian Hagen and Daniël Maarleveld
Experimental Jetset
Ed Fella
General Working Group
Hansje van Halem
David Karwan
Mr. Keedy
Na Kim
Jürg Lehni
Willem Henri Lucas
MacFadden and Thorpe
Karel Martens
Jeremy Mende and Bill Hsu
Mevis & van Deursen
Lesley Moore
Karl Nawrot & Walter Warton
Radim Peško
Project Projects
Joel Stillman
Sulki and Min
Martin Venezky’s Appetite Engineers
Volume Inc.
Zak Group

everyone I have ever slept with

In Everyone I Have Ever Slept With 1963-1995, Tracey Emin appliquéd the names of everyone she has shared a bed with onto the interior of a tent. The phrase ‘slept with’ has obvious sexual connotations but the inclusion of names of family members, female friends and numbered unborn foetuses, clarifies that the list is a literal documentation of the individuals she has slept with, though not necessarily in a sexual sense . Essentially, Emin has documented a series of personal interactions, exposing elements of a personal life which identified as significant. Emin says of the work:

“Some I’d had a shag with in bed or against a wall some I had just slept with, like my grandma. I used to lay in her bed and hold her hand. We used to listen to the radio together and nod off to sleep. You don’t do that with someone you don’t love and don’t care about”.

Due to the public persona that Emin presents, her reputation for having been sexually promiscuous (a ‘slag’ in her own words) often gains more press attention than the work she creates. She has been publicly open about a number of her personal experiences, including the considerable number of sexual partners she has had since becoming sexually active at 13. Perhaps it is the way in which she weaves together elements of this lascivious history, with her less publicised softer, more familial relationships with relatives and friends, which affords the viewer a broader, more rounded insight into the artist as a person. Her decision to record the people with whom she has shared an extremely intimate experience is what makes the work so arresting.

Creativity as understanding or exploration

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When we talk about what it means to be creative, we start at a foundation of originality. But creative ideas are rarely as original as we would hope they might be. Some of the best ideas are often entirely unoriginal, such as the lightbulb or telephone.

“Every artist learns through imitation,” Bill Watterson once said.

What this tells us about creativity is that maybe, just maybe, we should focus on talking about creativity in the context of understanding. Either understanding, or exploration. Conceptual or experimental.

Research has shown that creativity as understanding is, indeed, one approach that works: a means by which we attempt to create order from chaos, building bridges in the mind where there are none. We can look at conceptual artists and innovators, who use this perspective of creativity (of understanding the details) to generate ideas, as source of inspiration.

For conceptual thinkers, creativity is the ability to understand the complexities of things around us and, in doing so, seeing all the ways in which everything connects (one way or another). There is, after all, a lot of value in being able to see–to really see–what already exists in order to understand it and build off it.

If we look at all we know about creativity it is not that big of a stretch to see how understanding is at the core of it all.

How can you expect to bridge the gap between ideas if you don’t first understand where they might logically connect? Understanding matters.

We use creative exercises–like “asking ‘why’ five times,” or “pretending you’re someone else”–in an effort to generate new ideas, but what those types of thinking exercises are actually doing is helping us to understand concepts. They help us dive deeper into what it is we’re dealing with conceptually, and how the details of those concepts might relate to other details elsewhere.

As Socrates once taught: “Understanding a question is half an answer.”

To be more creative as conceptual thinkers, we must seek to more fully understand what it is we’re working with in the first place. Not completely, as complete understanding could blind us to possibilities. But some deeper understanding than what’s on the surface. Not seeing paragraphs on a page, but instead seeing ink in the shape of letters.

This type of creative exploration often leads to insights, but nothing that fellow conceptual thinkers couldn’t identify if they only took the time to look at the details.

Conversely, there exists experimental thinkers, who learn not by looking at the details, but who spend their time experimenting with different ideas (splashes of paint against the canvas, sporadic writing, etc.) in order to let previously unseen ideas naturally evolve.

This perspective of creativity works too, we know. But at a much more emotional level.

It’s the writer who sputters words out on a page and then has to revise what’s written repeatedly in order to make some sense of it. Or the painter who creates a thousand paintings in a year, only finding two or three truly worthwhile.

Which direction toward creativity is right? That depends on what type of person you are and the work you are doing.

Conceptual, or understanding-driven, creative thinking is extremely valuable in the realms of sciences, where discoveries must be developed and evolved over time. Conversely, experimental creativity is remarkably powerful for artists and traditionally creative crafts persons.

But an interesting thing happens when you take one perspective of creative thinking and put it where it doesn’t belong. The scientist whose experiments lead to happy accidents, as Alexander Fleming learned when he discovered penicillin. Or the artist who seeks to understand form and function of the paint, as Pablo Picasso uncovered through cubism.

When you find yourself thinking creatively, are you seeking to understand or explore? If you find yourself drawn to one perspective rather than the other, what do you think would happen if you switched? Rather than seeking to understand, seek to be more explorative, or vice-versa.

Photo by Mik Salac.