The first part of this reflection is to refer back to the introductory post I wrote on what I hoped to achieve from this course. In italics below is what I wrote in this learning log on February 21st 2015, and under each section is my review on this:
What I hope the course will do for me:
– change my way of working from an improvised “make it up as I go along” method to a more structured method with more time spent on preparatory exploration and sampling;
This will take more time to develop as I still find myself itching to dive in and get working on an idea straight away rather than spending time on sampling. I feel that this will improve over time and the more I pursue the other units towards a textiles degree the more disciplined I will be regarding planning and sampling. But, I do not want to become too disciplined and lose the spontaneity sometimes achieved by a looser approach.
– instill the discipline of using a sketchbook as a tool to develop ideas;
Again I am working on this but need to develop it further. I am certainly using my sketchbook a lot more, but mostly as a record of images seen rather than as a development tool.
– explore a theme more fully rather than jumping in with the first idea that pops into my mind;
I achieved this with my theme book on Ancient Egyptian Jewellery by allowing the theme to lead to the path of developing a neckpiece. However, I then went back and did actually develop the very first idea for a wallhanging that I had and made this into an additional piece.
– try new techniques; and
I’ve certainly tried lots of new techniques both within the requirements of the unit and by pursuing other interesting ideas that I came across in books, at workshops or online.
– challenge myself.
A big yes to this one. There were a lot of challenges especially around sketching and how to develop a sketch into a workable project.
Overall course review and reflection
This last 5 months has been incredibly busy. I basically treated the course as if it was a full time job and was fortunate to be able to spend this amount of time on the work and doing extra activities to supplement the assignments.
I am pleased with the work I have achieved throughout the course. It has taken me into new territories and stretched me in terms of sketching and design skills, and how to develop a design from a simple image. I feel that I have developed personally as a textile artist and that my skills have improved even over the short 5 months.
I am now really looking forward to continuing my studies further.
Demonstration of technical and visual skills.
I believe that my technical and visual skills have improved over the length of the course, culminating in the production of a quality piece of work for my final assignment. I think that my design and compositional skills have improved but will continue to improve further over the next few years and even longer, hopefully I will be continually gaining skills and evolving as an artist.
Quality of outcome.
I have always felt that presentation of my ideas has been a strong point and I hope this is a true reflection. I now need to work on preparing display boards for the assessment process and tying together my sketchbooks, learning log and samples into a coherent and logical format that also shows my thought processes.
Demonstration of creativity.
Again I think I have improved as the course has progressed, with my ideas and work becoming more adventurous. I am still a little stuck in the balance of taking the safe route rather than really reaching outside the boundaries and this is something I need to be aware of for future work. Perhaps I should have gone larger and more colourful for my final neckpiece? Maybe I just need to have the confidence to push myself to the other side of the self-imposed boundary, take a leap into the unknown and not be afraid of falling flat on my face!
In terms of context I have researched different aspects of textiles throughout this course and reflected on these in my learning log. I have been influenced by some of the artists I have come across – particularly Marjorie Schick and have included their ideas into my own work. I hope that more investigation of other artist’s work will gradually seep into my subconscious and produce a richer seedbed for my own ideas and work to grow from.