Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Wood & Zip Tie Manikins!

Our goal was to create a life-size manikin proportional to Tina with movable joints. However, we had to make some joints less malleable inorder to support the weight and balance itself so it would be free-standing. While it took a while, the mission was completed!

Art Review #2- Tornado

David Maxim, Double Tornados (2006), Oil Pastel and Graphite (34" x 21")

A few words immediately come to mind upon first seeing David Maxim Double Tornados. Violent, chaotic, energetic, forceful describe the initial effect has on viewer, which the artist establishes through the carefully controlled application of color, layering of different media, and the suggestion of texture. Double Tornados utilizes a split complementary color scheme but relies greatly on areas of intense black and empty space as well in order to establish a dynamic yet balanced piece. The heavy application of pastel, or perhaps charcoal, in the top right corner might trap the eye and cause an unbalanced composition, yet Maxim’s achieves balance by using high tones of red and yellow which have been slightly muted by the addition of brown in the funnel of the tornado. The red and yellow of the twin tornadoes connote the power and unrestrained energy of these terrifying natural phenomenon while the blue, which designates the earth or ground, portrays the opposite; tranquility and stability. Perhaps the most visually stimulating part of the painting occurs at the interface between the horizon and tornados. Here, the red and yellow of the tornados spin wildly together with the blue of the ground, generating a confused mixture of colors that is partially red, blue, and a muddy combination of the two. Maxim forgoes a mimetic depiction of a tornado and instead applies color, or in some cases, removes it, in order to compose a more exciting, dynamic, and visually appealing piece.  This poignant use of color, along with the slashing, spattered application of water and oil pastel, conveys the violence of the tornado and it’s remarkable power to disturb the usually motionless and stable earth into a whirling maelstrom. 

Although the colors of the tornado immediately capture the attention of the audience, one cannot help but notice the messy grid drawn into the picture with graphite. The grid appears to have been drawn on quickly while attempting, or intentionally ignoring, to keep the lines parallel or perpendicular to one another. It appears that the grid was added to the picture only after the tornado was drawn, as made evident by the faint lines across the tornado where the pencil scraped away the oil pastel. In doing so, Maxim introduces a thought provoking paradox into Double Tornados by pictorially suppressing an immensely powerful and seemingly uncontainable force. The regular, angular forms of the grid clash with the organic and random shapes of the tornado, just as the unpredictable forces of nature, manifested here by natural disaster, contend with human society. 

The picture itself might simply be read as a slash of color and charcoal across a green tinged paper, yet Maxim is able to inform viewers of the subject by using simple, but varied, marks in order to mimic different objects and materials. For example, the funnel of the tornados is given volume and relief from one another when some of the pastel is wiped off on the top-right portion of the funnel. The diagonal marks where the pastel was wiped off also allude to the rotation and upward movement associated with tornados. Small, rough marks near the horizon and the bottom of the tornados represent debris, while the firm, horizontal line of the horizon suggest stable earth. It seems that the artist attempts to depict atmosphere by small gray dots dripped onto the area surrounding the tornados, but this application was ineffective as only small portions of this empty space are given ambience instead of the entire piece. Overall, Maxim’s Double Tornados does well to depict the violent nature of these storms while also introducing some interesting ideas about modern humanity’s relationship to the natural world. 

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Illustrator compositions

 Tursman (Analogous/Split Complementary)