Christmas in the City
The last collage for Exercise 2.4, this idea came to me after a weekend of Christmas preparation. My husband and I had started with buying our tree, and carrying it home through the city with our son. The next morning, we went to the Farmer’s Market for wreaths, all very idyllic. On our way to lunch, we inadvertently drove through one of the worst sections of Baltimore, and the contrast between our Christmas and what I expected it might look like to the people in that neighborhood seemed striking.
The assignment asked for it to be an A2 size, but the design I had in mind didn’t lend itself to being folded for assessment, and I didn’t think the design gained anything from the larger size. I made the background from tea-stained pictures, contrasting that with the bright, primary colors of the wine bottle-as-snowglobe tree. It doesn’t have the impact I had hoped for. I wonder if it’s the lack of people. Perhaps a smaller ‘snowglobe,’ with a Victorian scene of Christmas morning, and people in the background scenes?
Here’s what I’ve been working on for Rosemary’s course, all leading towards a collography project:
Using different tools, stencils
Rosemary recommended that I make photocopies of my work so far, cut them up and rearrange them:
I chose to copy them in B&W to get a better sense of the values.
(It had nothing to do with low ink levels. Nope, not at all.)
Not much to look at, but it did make me feel that at least one element of the picture should be less random. That shaped my next sketches, along with these images:
I liked many of the sketches on this next page, and could see coming back to them for a different project, especially the one on the right side of the page:
However, I missed the more organic, natural feel that was in the original photo that started all this.
I think the bottom sketches are what I’m after, though maybe somewhere between the two. I intend to choose materials for the collograph base block that will give the result a less structured feel. So, mix of neutrals vs. one bold color? Wavy lines across the whole image or shorter ones? Lines angled, horizontal or vertical? Decisions, decisions…
My tutor gave me the green light to move away from the tea theme, though I was told by someone else at OCA that it should still apply. So I decided to keep a theme, just not tea, as a compromise. Perhaps having a specific parameter to work within is important?
Anyway, I moved to using a wine bottle as my starting point. It’s certainly a shape I’m very familiar with! I’ve already posted some of my sketchbook work for this assignment.
I toyed with idea of the shape representing something else, which was fun:
Ultimately, I think what the bottle can contain is more interesting. I like the way the landscape feels when enclosed. The black framing the view makes it recede, and cements the feeling of distance as you move toward the top of the scene.
One more piece to finish!
After all, when one needs a bottle cap, one must be prepared to sacrifice for art…
…even if it’s only 2PM.