Reflection and frustration – March 12 2017

I have become aware during my research for research 2.1 that I am using 3 or 4 words to describe art works – line, texture, form and colour and having done the art history course feel I should know much more but even without that course I am on my third course and by now my vocabulary should have increased!

I think my issue is that in trying to do a concise analysis in a short paragraph of say 300 words I am not able to condense what I wish to say.  Throughout the art history course I struggled somewhat with word limits and also I never did achieve one single analysis without having to re-work after feedback – and usually adding another 100 or even 200 words!

I do not want to loose what I learnt in that art history course and in fact want it to become a major part of my textiles studies because I have found something that I am really passionate about.  I need to sit and have a think about whether to start doing some short analysis pieces on a separate blog I have set up along with some annotations of images in order to improve and revise my visual skills with works of art – the analysis may be on say a singular piece of art of an artist I study for this course or a future course but those short blogs will force me to really look at art works and look at techniques in some depth and really use skills that I learnt in that infuriatingly difficult (at times) but very rewarding course.

As I think about descriptive words or things I must really remember to look at the following single words come to mind – and this list will be added to:

  • perspective
  • depth
  • volume
  • space
  • contrapposto
  • movement
  • chiaroscuro
  • tenebrism
  • painterly
  • linear
  • atmospheric
  • light
  • dark
  • tone
  • shade
  • media
  • horizon
  • shape
  • colour
  • texture
  • line
  • form
  • composition
  • abstraction
  • realism
  • genre

I need to look at the overall composition and if researching an artist that is not of this era consider the genre or the artistic period as well as remembering or researching influences, the social/political/economic factors, the materials or processes which developed, status of the artist or how artists were perceived and not forgetting the overall style of the genre or style developments – I am fully aware all these play their part in how the artist worked to produce the resolved paintings or sketchings.

In addition I now have the knowledge or the thought process that will also make me consider such things as place, inspiration of either music or words or personal events and also identity – this will also make me look at historical art works with new questions to consider.  On reflection I had already considered this in terms of my final essay for the art history course which was on the artist Artemisia Gentileschi as I considered whether her paintings were autobiographical or not i.e. were they the result of personal experience?

I think tonight I have hit frustration because of using those same 4 words repeatedly – I have to look at that list and consider the correct terminology combined with concise and condensed paragraphs – I really do have to learn to summarise my thoughts and ideas when asked to write just 300 or 500 words because despite that art history course I am still using 100 words when 10 will do!


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