Tutor Feedback – Assignment 4 – video

Summary of tutorial discussion
This is summary of the conversation we had this morning.
For this assignment I saw your work on your blog. Overall this is a thoughtful assignment
where it is clear that elements of the creative methodology have slotted into place for you.
• Your essay plan is well thought through with a title that poses a relevant and logical
question for you to answer. The plan breaks down the way you intend to answer
you question along with references to the artists you will be referring to. I suggest
you write you first draft over the next few days not worrying too much about the
word count. Send me this first draft before submitting assignment 5 – I will add my
comments and suggestions so you can make adjustments for me to see with the
assignment 5 work.
• Projects 5 and 6. You have demonstrated full engagement with the course material
mapping out how you have approached the tasks clearly in your learning log. There
is evidence of critical thought in both projects, firstly thinking through and analysing
the effect your work has on a space and how the space effects you work. It was
particularly pleasing to see you take your work to the local shop and seeing it
amongst the bottles of beer. You have used the same level of analysis in project 6
where you have developed the composition work of your painting by thinking about
colour balance, placement and arrangement of forms.
• From the photographs of your drawings and paintings on your blog the is evidence
that your style is developing and growing in confidence with the bold use of colour
and sense of energy in the work.
• Research point 4.1 you have made a good start to looking at where textiles can be
found. I suggest you also look at textiles used in medicine, space exploration and
personal protection garments.

Suggested reading/viewing
Following on from our conversation about not being too literal about what you make for
assignment 5 I think you will find this blog post by Pere useful
Alexander McQueen Spring Summer 2001collection. Apparently he made the audience wait
hours in the heat and dark before the show. I think it is interesting that the models can’t
see the audience; they are in a kind of goldfish bowl seemingly acting more and more
strangely. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nK_KA9U9rqo
Rotator cuff repair textile https://imac4.wordpress.com/2014/11/05/breathe-easy/
The history of Gore Tex https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3pzKQ8tv2kA
Adding reflective fibres to a weave http://www.ecouterre.com/dashing-tweeds-reflectivecycling-suits-for-a-well-groomed-night-out/

Please inform me of how you would like your feedback for the next assignment. Written or


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Tutor Feedback – Assignment 3 – video

Summary of tutorial discussion
This is summary of the conversation we had this morning.
Overall there is a good amount of work produced for this assignment with a number of
adventurous samples and a sense of investigation. There are however a few areas that you
need to return to in order to be successful at assessment.
• As outlined in the course material create your own colour chips for the colour palette
exercise. Use a paint medium that you are comfortable with then using the
photographs of the garden you have gathered pick out a rich selection of colours.
Make more than you need then play with them until you have come up with two
groups with a maximum of 5 colours to suit your two themes.
• Re think you theme boards by picking two distinctive themes relating to your subject
of gardens. These could be the ones we discussed or something fresh. Collect no
more than 8 to 10 images that best express the atmosphere or feeling evoked by
your theme. Include the colour palette chips, fabric swatches and small textile
• This more focused approach to the project will assist you in creating and organising
a more considered collection of textile samples.
Continue to explore your drawing style to build on the skill you are now beginning to
develop. Maintain the reflective consideration of your work by thinking about how things
turn out rather than whether the process was enjoyable. Spend some more time looking at
the work of contemporary textile practitioners – in particular those with similar themes to

Suggested reading/viewing
Arts Thread where graduates post images of their work
Student work from the UCA http://www.uca.ac.uk/study/courses/ba-textiles-fashioninteriors/
Student work from my local University Huddersfield
I suggest you explore other university websites to get a flavour of what students across the
country are creating.
Please inform me of how you would like your feedback for the next assignment. Written or video/audio.

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Tutor Feedback – Assignment 2 – video

Summary of feedback – part two/research
This is a summary of our conversation this afternoon.
There is evidence of full engagement with the course material and a willingness to stretch
your skill base. This assignment shows a development in thinking and process with light
bulb moments.

 Aim to have the bulk for your research material from contemporary and emerging

 Try not to over intellectualise your analysis of research. Use expressive even
flowery language to describe what you see and how artworks make you feel. This
will help you understand them better and in turn understand your own work better.

 Upload larger images of your work to the blog
 All the creative work has been approached with a broad mind allowing you to be
challenged and embrace the new experiences.

 Make sure you don’t loose the sensitive treatment of materials and techniques in
your rush to get tasks done.

 Regularly think about placement and composition, for example in the doodles
relating to music the marks need not always be linear and when using a word to
inspire marks the page does not need to be filled evenly. Thinking about space and
pressure when doing these exercises will bring about more aesthetically pleasing

Suggested reading/viewing
Drawing and Making by Kyra Cane published by Bloomsbury. This is a great book with lots
of examples of how practitioners use drawing in their creative process.
New Designers is a great place to find emerging practitioners.
Graduates from a range of creative disciplines upload portfolios to Arts Thread
https://www.artsthread.com Use the search portfolios button to explore what is there.
Drawing as performance

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UW46mUXu1Cs – I think you will love this one


And there are loads more!
Please inform me of how you would like your feedback for the next assignment. Written or
Well done, I look forward to your next assignment.

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Tutor Feedback – Assignment 1

Overall Comments

(All work submitted digitally)
Thank you for your submission.
Well done on the completion of your first assignment for Ideas & Processes Jane. I am pleased that you have found new course enjoyable and easy to follow; you have made a very positive and confident start. You communicate your ideas well; your blog is clear and professional (I know that you intend to place the work assignments into the correct
lists/sections) this has made it easy to follow your progress digitally throughout.

Assessment potential (after Assignment 1)
You may want to get credit for your hard work and achievements with the OCA by formally
submitting your work for assessment at the end of the module. More and more people are
taking the idea of lifelong learning seriously by submitting their work for assessment but it
is entirely up to you. We are just as keen to support you whether you study for pleasure or
to gain qualifications. Please consider whether you want to put your work forward for
assessment and let me know your decision when you submit Assignment 2. I can then give
you feedback on how well your work meets the assessment requirements.

Feedback on assignment
Demonstration of technical and Visual Skills, Quality of Outcome, Demonstration of
Part one utilises an interview with Edmund de Waal which appeared in the Nov/Dec 2015 issue of Crafts magazine, as a starting point to investigate ways of using different types of research material and different themes to generate creative thinking and making.
You have recognized that you are now at the early experimental stages of
mixing media in terms of textiles; it does take time to move away from
traditional techniques if this is what you have been used to, and to explore
new combinations and processes.
For your exercise into a personal experience, I felt that you made a very strong start, and your photography and reflective notes on your journey, were thoughtful and interesting; however, it ‘is’ difficult, once this information is arranged or collated, to move from inspiration to creation, and you were clearly disappointed with your first attempt; I also enjoyed your second piece more, particularly the way in which it represents your journeys beginning and end in the same place; your confidence in the useof mixed media will continue develop throughout the course.

Words, poetry, action and music.
Your work is stronger when you choose looser, more malleable media, I feel that felt pens and sharpies are quite restrictive. You are trying to move away from what you describe as safe colours and techniques, and you are beginning to gain confidence in your drawing and mark-making;your pastel and charcoal studies are a very good start, they are much more expressive and energetic.
I can see that you often return to exercises to try something new and to push yourself further, this is great to see Jane, well done!

For your final exercise, I loved the touching, personal recollections of your neighbour, and his gift of the old shed; this sample (below) is the onewhich I feel is the most exciting and sensitive, and tells a story, without being too literal or too close to the original photographs and sketches (but still inspired by them) Your use of found materials to print with for your
development, also feels much less inhibited.

Exercise 1.7 – Place

‘It’s a bit bright Doris!’ a sample by Jane Murdock.

Demonstration of technical and Visual Skills, Demonstration of Creativity
All sketchbook/loose pages have been viewed on-line and commented on
in conjunction with the rest of the assignments.

Learning Logs or Blogs/Critical essays
Practical Research, Critical Analysis and Contextual Research.
On-line learning log:

Some later work will need to be posted Jane, but for now, I can reviewyour work easily through your blog. Any images added to your blog would be clearer if they were a little bigger for future assignments.
It is good to read that you are increasingly aware of the need for critical reflection, this does take practice, and is very different from just documenting your progress. Your research notes are thoughtful and considered; particularly your thoughts on the rhythm of art.
Your research, analysis and critical writing skills have clearly been enriched by your previous Art History course, and are a strong point in your work; I was pleased to see that you had focused on the following quote, relating to the importance of negative space, “making with more space between objects” (de Waal, 2015) this is a statement which I refer to repeatedly with design students!

Suggested reading/viewing
Identity and labels: Your personal response to work which challenges
conventional labels.
Your choice of Becky Knight, as an artist whose work crosses boundaries,
puts me in mind of Suzie Freeman’s work (below)

12 days, 6/12. Suzie Freeman.

Good Taste, 16/15. Suzie Freeman.

You may also enjoy the work of Jennifer Collier; Jennifer recycles vintage
papers (sometimes from old books) and tea bags (amongst other things)
which she bonds and waxes to create ‘fabric’. This material is then treated
as if it is cloth and stitched together to build the objects and sculptures.

Bag dress, Jennifer Collier.

Pointers for next assignment.
Continue to experiment and explore more unusual approaches to mixed
media, moving away from those which you are most comfortable with; this
is a good first (diagnostic) assignment.
So far, you are demonstrating quite clear sequential development in your
approach, particularly in the Personal Experience exercise.
You will be continuing with Rebecca who is an excellent tutor, I’d like to
wish you the very best of luck with your course.
Please do not hesitate to get in touch if you have any questions.

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Finding Lines Exhibition – Derby Museum

The title of this exhibition is self descriptive of the works within and was one that started apparently with a series of creative acts that seems to have begun just by capturing the lines created by the curator/exhibitions officer of Derby Museum, Andrea Hadley-Johnson, as she waled through a field of grass. The one photograph created a call for more images that captured lines that appear around us and eventually to the exhibition that concentrates on mark-making and the simple act of drawing.

What immediately appealed to me is the fact that mark-making is one of my weaker areas so this exhibition gave me an opportunity to explore a wide variety of different lines and marks using different media by a varied selection of artists including sketches by some well known names. Below is a small selection of some of the works in the exhibition – I appreciate I have concentrated on the more well-known names and perhaps that is part of my art history background that means that I have wanted to study these pieces but also a feeling that I can take lessons forward from them in conjunction with the work of the contemporary artists also on display.

Joseph Wright. Blot drawing of a landscape. 1785. Ink on paper

I fully admit to having made a bee-line for the work of local artist Joseph Wright whose paintings have their own gallery in Derby Museum.  What I find interesting about this drawing is the primarily horizontal nature of the marks with just the addition of a few vertical or diagonal lines which are suggestive of form and movement – the horizontal marks also suggest form but I feel are also textural and tonal marks.  This sketch feels very much that it may have been a quick preliminary sketch to a larger oil painting and captures the essence of the landscape rather than the intricate detail.

L.S. Lowry. Steelworks. 1960. Chalk on paper

This sketch is a direct contrast to Joseph Wright’s landscape and was done by L.S. Lowry in 1960 and as the title suggests was of the steelworks in an industrial city but instead of using pencils, pens or paints as chosen media the work is done in chalk.  I feel the chalk gives a slightly softer or muted appearance than charcoal – the grey is not as harsh and this helps to create the smokey industrial scene.  I find the combination of smudged tones and sharper descriptive lines immediately appealing in the scene that the lines and marks used are not overworked – there is nothing there that does not need to be and even the figures are in the match-stick style for which Lowry is so well known but the figures give both a sense of scale and perhaps a sense of life that would otherwise not have been there … yes the steelworks in full use suggest the harsh working life within but the figures reinforce this just that bit further.

If I compare and contrast both of the above images – one in pen and ink is strong, defined and linear despite the subject being landscape whilst the other uses smudged chalk with slightly softer but no less defined lines to create distinct forms and shapes.  The Joseph Wright piece is able to suggest distant hills through lighter, thinner horizontal lines which are enhanced by the thicker horizontal and vertical lines of the trees in the foreground – I know the landscape of Derbyshire well and this scene is suggestive of the High Peak area and I find it gives me a direct lesson in how to capture the scenes I frequently see without the need for colour.  The L.S. Lowry piece is such a direct contrast because of the use of softer chalk to create the marks and smudges of the steelworks – there is a grittiness and harshness in his depiction of the urban landscape.

Henry Moore. At the coal face. 1941-2. Pen, ink, chalk, wax crayon, pencil and scraping on paper

Staying with the theme of heavy industry Henry Moore depicted the scene at a coal face in a very heavily worked piece using a mixture of media.  By using his combination of media he was able to create wide variety of marks that give the impression of depth , textures, form and lines whilst creating the harsh environment of the coal face during World War II – this is the one sketch I would love to go back and study much further as there is a hint of colour that is suggestive of the lack of light down in the mines.  It is frustrating that my photograph is not clearer due to the lights in the gallery reflecting on the glass as the lines and marks cannot be seen as clear as I would like.

Pablo Picasso. Dove of Peace. 1950. Biro on paper

Pablo Picasso’s Dove of Peace is again a complete contrast to the above two works – simply done with red biro in broad sweeping lines.  There is virtually no detail on this dove but only marks made to suggest the form and character of the bird.

Horace Brodzky. Nude. 1937. Pen and ink on paper




These gestural sweeping marks can also be seen in the work of Horace Brodzky with his drawing of a nude female figure.  The marks are bold and linear suggesting the human form whilst not being overly descriptive – there is a simple capture of a reclining figure which leaves a viewer questioning the narrative (or at least that is my perception of this sketch).

Gustav Klimt

I find a direct contrast to the simple lines of Brodzky’s sketch in the work by Gustav Klimt – my photograph unfortunately was not the clearest due to the lights within the exhibition.  The female figure that Klimt has drawn is much more detailed and has a direct eroticism due to the depiction of clothing draping across the woman and also in the way that he has depicted her face – the more detailed softer pencil lines give an indication of character and who this woman and also there is a more direct narrative.

Linda Karshan. 8.6.00. 2000. Graphite on paper

This sketch by Linda Karshan is of an abstract genre – there is no indication in the information of any inspiration or narrative and hence the viewer is able to perceive the sketches and marks in their own individual way. Initially I was unsure about this sketch of repetitive marks but a little research into the artist informs me that the artist’s works reflect the very processes of their making so in this instance the repetitive marks are exactly that i.e. repetitive marks!  I now feel that this process of making marks in this manner is also reminiscent of the pointillism of Georges Seurat albeit in a monochrome and abstract style with no sense of form – the process of pointillism can take on a meditative and rhythmic form in the same way as the works of this contemporary artist.

Liz Atkin’s series of charcoal sketches on newspapers are reflective of the works that she draws on discarded newspapers and gives a way to other passengers.  Information in the Museum booklet on this exhibition reveals that these drawings are both given away as just simple acts of kindness and also to be advocacy for mental health and Compulsive Skin Picking and for me I find this creates a new depth in my understanding of the pieces – art has enabled this artist to recover from her own personal difficulties as it refocuses her mind and keeps her hands occupied and prior to this exhibition the artist had not exhibited any of the drawings in a public space so this in itself maybe forming part of the healing process.  I really loved the combination of marks and the ability to use the charcoal to swiftly sketch scenes (apparently 1 minute sketches) that are both emotive and descriptive – for me I found it was these images that created the strongest emotional response.  The newspaper background itself provides the colour that really punches out the lines and marks of the charcoal and almost grounds the scenes within the newspapers.

Finally I loved the simplicity of the lines and marks of the cloisters of San Gimignano – the artist has given a sense of depth by the depiction in dark harsh marks of the tree in the foreground whilst keeping the lines of the cloisters light and deliberate.

These photographs are just a very small selection as stated above – there were over 60 drawings in all from simple doodles to  The exhibition did as it stated it would – it brought the viewer back to the simple joy of drawing and encourage participation by including paper and drawing tools to enable you to add your own mark to the exhibition whilst also taking away some confidence in mark-making.  The exhibition stated it wanted to show that drawing is a way of expressing emotion and therefore can enhance a sense of well-being and this is certainly shown in the work of Liz Atkin.

At the back of the Museum booklet there is a page titled ‘Card Provocations’ which encourages you to create everyday acts of creativity – simple suggestions such as draw fierce marks, look out of the window and draw what you see or simply draw your finger and these suggestions I will be adding to my noticeboard as a way of warming up for the day or for when my mind goes blank and can work in conjunction with the verbs and words suggested in Exercise 1.5.

What did I learn from this exhibition and what have I  really taken away?  Certainly I have gained a little more confidence in my own mark-making as there is no right or wrong way – my marks are my own way of expressing myself or getting the essence of what I see down on paper.  I have also been able to study the lines and marks of some artists I have long been a fan of – the Joseph Wright sketch was of particular appeal due to his paintings being in the gallery below.  It was fascinating to see the wide range of media used which in turn serves as a reminder to keep working on my sketches using different media to create different marks and perhaps I should set aside an afternoon to create some of the early mark-making exercises of A Creative Approach – it is always productive I feel to sometimes go back to the foundations of drawing skills and revisit them.   This exhibition also served as a simple reminder of why I am sat here typing – I enjoy making art and I enjoy sketching in all its form and sometimes when I get bogged down in study or research I need to remind myself of that fact …. the exhibition takes you back to the simplicity of enjoying being creative.

Footnote:  what is really lovely is the booklet that accompanies the exhibition and which can be purchased in the shop is interactive  – there is an encouragement not just to read about the exhibition but to draw or scribble on it and to use it to be creative … the booklet becomes part of the exhibition and its aims in itself.


Derby Museums. (date unknown).  Finding Lines.  Derby. Derby Museums.

artsy.net.  (date unknown).  Linda Karshan [online].  [Date accessed:  August 2017].  Available from:  https://www.artsy.net/artist/linda-karshan

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Artist research – Jill Bliss

Jill Bliss. Voice of Nature: Mushroom Art. Pinterest

This is a photographer who has come to my attention quite unexpectedly through one of my fellow students in the OCA Textiles Facebook group who felt that my work on fungi reminded her of the work of the photographer Jill Bliss – the student kindly posted the link to an article about her work on the website My Modern Met.

Ms Bliss is lucky enough to live and work in the Pacific Northwest and on her walks arranges a combination of fungi, flora and whatever other botannical elements catch her eye into a series of photographs that range in colour from muted and soft to bright jewel tones that speak of the variety of life that abounds in the environment.   Each photograph takes a variety of fungi and captures them in all their glory and in doing so you find yourself being able to see almost a microcosm of the life in that part of the world.

Jill Bliss. Nature Medley. Pinterest

As I look at these photographs now I do so post-tutor feedback for assignment 5 and consequentially find myself studying the composition and colours.

I find myself drawn to the fact that the colours are carefully arranged so that the accent colours really bring the arrangements to life – there is not too much colour that it confuses your eyes but enough of that accent colour to really focus your attention and calm your mind …. maybe that is what appeals i.e. the fact that these photographs are instantly peaceful and calming whilst retaining interest and fascination.

Jill Bliss. Nature Medley. Pinterest

In each photograph there is a different collection of fungi and the fauna or other botanical pieces and each is arranged almost painterly to build up and create an image that to me reminds me of appliqued fabrics of various patterns or manipulated gathered fine silks that have been carefully arranged on a dress or bodice – I feel there is almost a textile element coming though but fungi and fauna are the textiles of nature so this something for me to consider.

I need to spend time really looking at the website of Ms Bliss and focus my mind on how she arranges her work and the elements she considers important or what she may have left out and include her work amongst the other artists I have studied that my tutor has advised me to take another look at as I refine my samples.


Bliss, J.  (date unknown).  Nature Medley [online].  [Date accessed:  August 2017].  Available from:  http://jillbliss.com/portfolios/nature-medley-photos/

Richman-Abdou, K.  2017. Photographer Captures Colourful Mushrooms in Vibrant Arrangments [online].  [Date accessed:  August 2017].  Available from:  http://mymodernmet.com/mushrooms-jill-bliss/


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Reflection on tutor feedback – Assignment 5

Writing this reflection on this tutor report seems almost quite strange – I have worked through this course at a pace that has suited me as it has kept me focused and interested in the work and with my Asperger’s brain that has to be a very good thing!

My tutor report was exactly as I expected with regards to the samples – I knew I was not entirely happy with any of them and had my concerns so I wanted to submit before I did any further refinements.  Suffice to say I have overthought and over egged the pudding – that was my fear in my critical reflections.  My tutor felt the samples were playful and exploratory but that they felt chaotic and thrown together and I totally understand her points – I was aware I was battling through a summer flu bug and on a time constraint and also not really sure how far to take the work or how complex so guess I really did throw everything at them!  My tutor has suggested looking at some of the artists I have researched including Valerie Gardiner, Barbara De Pirro, Billy Kidd and Lindsay Taylor and in particular their compositions and colours so that I can pull back my own work and produce more refined samples …… I feel less will most definitely be more.

Individual notes I took during my video feedback call about the above artists are:

Barbara De Piro:  use of composition – grouped bobbly bits around the edge; restrained and considered.

Billy Kidd:  black background brings image forward; pared back and minimal.

Lindsay Taylor:  very feminine work; linear and delicate lines; natural colours with brighter colours overlaid.

Valerie Gardiner:  use of a lot of brown with off white and hints of purple – accent colours bring definition whilst the off white pushes the main part of the composition forward.

With regards to my understanding of the creative processes and appropriate methodologies it seems it has really come together in the course and also my thinking skills have really developed  and hence impacted on my approach to creativity – my tutor has assured me that this will be realised in my making and it happens at different times for everyone.  My tutor was also happy that I have felt that the theme in this course that I chose for my final project is one that is really at the beginning of its creativity and that I want to take it forward not just in my studies but in my working practice – for me fungi are the corals of the land so I know I also want a sea theme to start to be created to run alongside a theme of beauty from decay.

My learning log has apparently demonstrated the aforementioned understanding of the creative process including the value of reflective thinking as well as my critical thinking skills and also analysis of the contextual research but and it is a big BUT it has been suggested I give myself time to make my thinking more focused and refined and consider with more depth my own work and that of others.  After my Skype tutorial in which my tutor recognised the fact that I am quite a deep thinker my fiance admitted to laughing as he had heard this part of our conversation – it seems he often hears the cogs in my brain working even overnight when I am thinking about something or trying to work something  out and I do keep a notebook by my bed as a consequence so my tutor is almost a little too accurate!!  I am aware of a need to restrain my thoughts and really focus my attention and consider simplifying some of my ideas so will take heed of this advice – I think it is a question of what lines can I take out rather than what lines can I add.

My drawing apparently is  working with a less is more approach much better and this is something I am really working on – I need to develop it further and apply it to my sample making.

Lastly it is time to prepare for assessment and hence there are notes at the end of the feedback in how to prepare and to thoroughly check everything including using all my tutor suggestions – this will be done in conjunction with refining my samples along with making a couple of new ones over the coming month.

Overall I am really happy with the feedback – it was exactly as I expected as said at the beginning and I am very much appreciative of the points raised as they make complete sense.  I need to ensure I do not muddy my colours and thing about accent colours or the background colours which enable the foreground to really come forward and pop – these tips will play to my strengths with colour and develop an area I want to be part of my developing personal voice.  I need to go back now and really look at the artists suggested and work on refining the samples whilst also looking in a bit more depth at those artists in terms of composition – the black  backgrounds of the photographs by Billy Kidd are particularly appealing.  I have kept a series of notes taken throughout Skype tutorial and these will be added to my sketchbook work as pointers to think about and really consider.


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