Abstract animals

Abstract animals - student project

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A digital effort, a little easier to be more swirly and loose somehow 
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Various animals with Robert Joyner.  I’m so happy to have this project to follow right now  I’ve been in the artistic doldrums and struggling with evolving  my art. I deliberately chose a different photo resource because otherwise I tend to just do exactly what the teacher has done. I chose to use gouache today as I have more colour variety available.  I was initially disappointed with my effort, but now several hours later I have looked at it afresh and feel delighted and happy!  I have included my warm up pieces because actually I was so much more relaxed when I was just roughly sketching! As soon as I knew I was doing my project piece I sort of tightened up.  I plan to stick with this project for the entire journey and I also look forward to seeing everyone else’s efforts along the wayAbstract animals - image 15 - student projectAbstract animals - image 16 - student projectOwls for day 2. My preliminary sketches for this project are always in a huge A2 sketch pad standing on an old easel which I think helps me do gestural sketching a little looser. My main project pieces ( as the owl below ) are in an A3 sketch book. I’m a bit disappointed with my effort on this one. I made the mistake of simply using some collage paper that I already had saved. The colours weren’t really right and what I should have done was added in the extra effort to make some more collage paper in colours that were more pleasing to me. I guess I do like parts of it - the scratched feather markings on his body and the texture I managed to work into the background sky.  Once again, I used a different image to avoid the temptation of copying and to encourage myself to use my own imagination.


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Third day in and I’m immensely enjoying this project. Acrylics today tho mine are very old and very cheap ones so it’s hard to get thick texture. I really like the layering and rubbing together of the colours once on the piece. Once again, I prefer my final gestural sketch of the fox to the finished project fox but I’ve made it a rule not to keep going back and amending. (I can see where I didn’t shape the orange red around his snout enough). 

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Day 4 - a flock of birds 

I really really enjoyed this one. My time was quite fragmented today so I had to keep coming back to it and I seemed to have a real relaxed feeling as I cut and stuck pieces on. I can really feel myself gradually loosening up as this project progresses. As an extremely late starter in art I have been unable to watch tutorials without trying to do completely and exactly what the tutor does!  I felt I had no imagination and no ideas of my own.  This course is honestly amazing for somebody like me. 

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Day 5 - pale headed rosella 

I spent more time on this one and really got into enjoying the collage part. I always end up comparing mine to the tutors and then feel a little deflated at the huge discrepancy in ability but then I have to remind myself that is exactly why I am here doing this course. I know that daily practice will move me in the right direction. The whole process is hugely enjoyable and I can’t wait each day to get the next email to announce the next project is up

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Well I could barely wait to start today’s geometric elephant project. Once again it was relaxed fun. I used some ink and a feather to make the geometric lines on the finished piece and ink and a twig for the surround. I added legs in because my brain struggled with a head with no body....

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Rooster with collage. This was wonderfully distracting and great fun. My approach to sketching these animals is now so relaxed compared to anything I had ever sketched before I discovered the wonderful Robert Joyner. I’m really pleased with the outcome of my rooster and honestly think I was smiling the whole way through the process! All of these pictures are in a big old A3 sketchbook that I’ve had for ages not knowing what to put in it. I’m delighted to see each page now and really look forward to seeing the whole book filled with my abstract animals.  

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Jacki Wooller