Art Society

I attended my first meeting with the local Art Society yesterday evening. My previous working hours never allowed such time for regular groups or classes, evening-based or otherwise, so it was nice to finally say ‘yes’ to something I can take part in on an invariable basis. The people at the group were all so lovely and welcoming. My friend from work had joined me on my first visit and we seemed to settle in pretty quickly which was nice. On arrival I was pleasantly surprised to see another familiar face; a friend from an art class dating a couple of years back. My colleague and I joined him at the table and we all started working on our own projects. The art space was shared over two large rooms. The first room was used for the weekly demonstration -whatever that might be – and the second room, the one in which we opted to settle , was set aside for ‘doing your own thing’. I did a little work based around the ‘Don’t Remain Static’ theme I’ve been working on for a while.

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I’ve promised myself I’m going to be brave next week and peruse other peoples’ work, just like some of the artists did last night, and perhaps I’ll make more of an effort to keep social. I even signed up to join them for their annual night out at a local Italian restuarant, which will be around the beginning of March. It will be cool to get to know some of the others in the group a little better. In addition to the positivity yesterday, my friend amazed me when he produced a belated birthday gift – a pack of Pigma Micron pens! Proper mint!

The eve was actually awesome and there’s a mighty chance that Monday may indeed become my favourite day of the week. For me, it’s not only time to get all dreamy with my art, but also definite time set aside to focus on my art degree.

 

 

Temporary Art

I completed the first part of my art degree, finally. I’ve not had much chance to post much about anything recently, mostly because I’ve been really busy with other projects that revolve around homelife, but also because I recently discovered House, the television series, and now I’m hooked. And probably beyond help. Pretty sure I’m due a new episode about now. Alas, I’m going to eat two-day old popcorn, nibble at some bombay mix and get going on the next exercise.

Meanwhile, you can see how my warm-up exercise went, HERE.

A degree in Fine Art

I finally enrolled on a Fine Art degree course and officially started two days ago. I already emailed my tutor and gave a brief introduction of myself and the desired outcomes I hope to expect from the programme -it’s all very exciting! I’ve been told I need to keep some kind of blog/journal to keep track of my progress – a sort of ‘learning log’ -but after much thought I’ve decided to stick with this one and just add extra menus and what not. Now I haven’t got an excuse to avoid posting. I think this blog is going to take a good turn, and there’s a chance to gain extra marks from the posts, so I guess it had better do. Of course, I will thrive on the structure of it all. Structure is always good and structure is usually secure. I noticed on Facebook yesterday that it has been exactly one year since I posted a status about wanting to start my degree in 2016, and now it’s happening.

In all the excitement, I forgot to post about the art exhibiton -It was totally ace! A really great night and quite an experience for me. I didn’t interact much with the other artists, perhaps one or two, but everybody seemed lovely. It was nice to see friends and family showing support, including some faces I hadn’t seen in a while.

Below is a photo of the work I had on display

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‘Caustic Foliate’ 2016

 

I’m going to stick with the early morning wake-up calls and continue to be as productive as possible. I put a small sketchbook in my bag this morning. Going to attempt a sketch-a-day, even if it means a sketch on the bus to work or during my lunch hour.

 

Morning Productivity

I’m happy that the first day of August started on a Monday. It gives a sense of stability and pattern to the month. It puts me at ease and acts as a kind of refresher. My plan was to wake up at 6:00am everyday this month and get something done before I set out to work. I awoke at 6:00am on Monday and then 7:20am on the two days following. Tuesday and wednesday’s sleep was nice and I had some wonderful, broken dreams, but sleeping doesn’t make art, at least not in the physical sense. Today I awoke at 6:00am, again. I’ve realised that the best way to actually stay disciplined to the alarm is to promptly get out of bed the minute you here the alert. Try to ignore the cold, or dreams, or the fact that your eyes still feel heavy and just get going. So now I’m sat here now, with my Earl Grey, feeling happy that I’m already making the most of the day. It’s already been decided that today is a blogging day, so there’s no pressure to create anything on paper just yet. Boards of Canada is filling the room and I can see the rain from my window. Looks like I’ll be wearing my mac today. 

Not long until the exhibition now. I’ve recently found out that a lot people are under the impression that this is an exhibition solely consisting of my work, but I am in fact submitting only the one drawing. I’ll post details of the dates and venue when I return from work, later today. In fact, speaking of work, in some ways my new job contributes to my artistic productivity. It enables me to have a balanced sleep pattern and there are regular times I can now set aside to get things done. Like the mornings, for example. This is my plan for the month…

6:00-6:15am Wake up, make a brew.
6:15-6:25am Check online art-related mail and social networking.
6:25-7:00am Blog/Draw/Project.
7:00-7:15am Breakfast
07:15-7:30am Wash/Dress/look… presentable(?)
7:30-8:00 More art…
8:00-8:15am – set off

Hats off to the people who spend longer than fifteen minutes getting dressed and looking fancy. The truth of the matter is that even if I spent an extra half-hour doing make-up or whatever, is that I’d probably look exactly the same anyway, as I really haven’t a clue about all that malarkey. Plus, I’d rather spend that extra thirty minutes painting and making art. If I can get through the whole of August and stick to my routine, then I’ll be okay. I’ll most likely be okay anyway, but I’ll feel better about stuff. Occasionally I wonder if my blogging is procrastination in disguise. After all, wouldn’t it be better to produce a picture? Journal writing, blogging and keeping records of daily routines is something I’ve always enjoyed, so I’m going to continue being guilt-free about the whole thing. 

Art Proposal

At the beginning of June I applied for a place at a Manchester art exhibition that will be happening this coming September, and it’s ace to say that somebody has said yes to my very first art proposal. I’ll only be having a single piece of art on display, but it’s all very exciting to me and I’m feeling very positive about the whole thing. Life seems to be on the up. My new job begins on 20th June, so that gives me approximately a week of free time between the termination of my current job and the next. It will be lovely to plan what I need to get done in terms of the exhibition and I’ll also be able to make some social plans around my new schedule. The new job will be regular working hours, Monday to Friday, which means after almost ten years I’ll finally be able to have some kind of structure in my life and I like that idea very much. Not only will this mean I’ll be able get some much needed sleep, but it also means I’ll be able to put aside set working hours for my art stuff, which is something I’ve never been able to do since getting a full-time job. Recently I’ve been working on the drawings below. They are loosley based on the proposal and will eventually play a significant part of my future applications. I’m still focusing on the theme of ‘Don’t Remain Static‘, which I shall shed more light on during the progress of this blog. Meanwhile, I’m going to continue my drawings and hope to post more updates of my work very soon.

zara1zara2zara3

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

MARCH/APRIL REVIEW

March was a productive month for doodles. I got into the habit of carrying my sketchbook everywhere and it resulted in lots of page-filling. The extra day I gained after dropping my work hours has proven to have a positive outcome as well, so that was a good move. As much as I love taking the bus to work, it’s nice to have less travel time and more hours to do creative stuff.

The idea for the diary didn’t workout, though. Whenever I seemed to search for a day to look back on there was a missing entry. Turns out, that in almost every journal, March has always been the month with the least entries. It was really odd. The only conclusion I came to was that the month of March might be a bit of ‘come down’ month. January is most likely going to be filled with “hope” for the year, Februrary might still be quite exciting and you may have even added some new goals to the year, but by March a few things may have not gone to plan already and you might have started to give up on ideas or letting those New Years Resolutions slip. On the other hand, it could also mean that your life has been so exciting that you’ve simply not had the time to follow through a page-a-day of writing. Unfortunately, it’s probably more the former rather the latter.

These patterns below happened by accident. They originally began as biro-doodles, and whilst it’s how they appear to remain, it took a while to line the shaded areas and they are no longer just silly drawings to me. In fact, I actually like them very much. I was getting lazy with my sketch booklast year, so to see a completed page makes me feel quite prolific. That’s good. I think I like fig. 1 best. It reminds me of something sciencey; like little molecules of blood flowing through my veins or something like that. I might attempt more of these patterns in colour.

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Fig. 2

 

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Fig. 2

 

April is almost at an end and things seem to be panning out okay. I’ve got a few work-related plans that should change my life for the better if it all works out and I’ve got some good ideas for producing some work of exhibition standard. I need to think about getting an art CV together which is going to prove difficult seeing as I’ve not gained any academic qualifications in that field, nor have I ever had anything exhibited. I think if I put my mind to it then something positive will come out of all this nonsense.

Anyway, I’ve since created a new art page, which is bascially a mini side project for fun. It’s a space to share my limericks and loony characters… it’s a bit silly really. You can check that page out HERE.  I’m not even sure what makes a limerick great, and mine are quite childish to be honest, but I like creating the troupe, some of which are loosely based on people I know or have met at some point in my life.

Now I’m super-excited about May and I’ll be posting more artwork soon…

 

 

Don’t Remain Static

I transfered my blog from Blogspot to WordPress and now I’ve lost my stats. It’s not really important in the grand scheme of things, but it’s always nice to be reminded that somebody might be interested in your art and/or writing. And if that somebody is replaced with ‘lots of people’ then it’s even better. So now my figures are only in the hundreds instead of the thousands, but I think I’ll eventually get over it.

As the month of Februrary comes to an end, I am slowly evaluating the past 3 weeks and have come to the conclusion that it’s been time well spent. Not just in terms of creativity, but on a social and emotional level, too. March is the first month I shall officially be working four days a week, instead of five. That means I technically work part-time now, so that’s good. Not much thought has gone into how I will survive financially, but the extra day off will keep me happy and constructive. I’ve already began taking my sketchbook everywhere I go and when there’s nothing to do, there’s always something to draw.

At the start of 2016, I decided to take a different approach to my usual way of thinking in an attempt to get more things done and remain worry-free. I’m justifying anything that I might usually consider to be a risk, as being totally okay. These kind of things shall now be learning curves and experiences. I’m planning to hit this huge reset button, which is like some kind of big, red, chunky, shiny cylinder that I’ll punch when I turn thirty, so there’s not much to fret about until then because time starts again in Zara’s world.  I’m finding it easier to accept my decisons about most things and, as a result, my mind has been a lot more open and I’ve felt very happy about all the aspects of my life. Maybe when I’m thirty, I’ll create a new reset button for when I’m thirty-one, and then another for when I’m thirty-two…and so on.

I’m actually not overly well today. Flu-type symptoms or something. I didn’t sleep much last night either, and as a result I had incredibly bizzare dreams. They were senseless and repetitive. The kind that can be quite disorientating, but at the same time oddly pleasurable and fascinating. One of the dreams included the loss of my teeth. In the dream I had collided with somebody and cracked my left front tooth. I peered into a mirror and noticed a huge chip and within a few minutes the right tooth had fallen out and my other teeth started to quickly decay. I woke up in mid-panic and frantically began to feel my gnashers. When I was teenager, I’d often dream about losing my teeth. I’d either lose them, they’d rot, they’d bleed or turn to mush. I’m not sure why my recent toothy dreams have returned. Odontophilia probably plays its part and maybe the partial guilt I hoard for not wearing the mouth guard that my dentist strongly suggests I wear on a nightly basis.

Anyway,  I have this idea of how to structure this new blog. I firstly need to choose a past year -I’ll probably go for 2003, as it was the year I turned seventeen and most likely about the time I was naive enough to think I knew where I was definitely going to be ten years from then – Anyway, the plan is to dig out my 2003 diary and see what I was thinking about thirteen years ago from today, tomorrow, the day after, etc. I’ll then do some kind of comparison thing, but through art or something. It’s not quite all come together yet, so I’ll have to see. It’s possible to forget how much you have actually achieved. Whilst sometimes you might feel a bit static, you might in fact be at your most productive point. It is similar to that of when you look back and reminisce of good times that may very well have seemed quite dull at the time of happening. I don’t want feel static anymore. I want to feel productive. I’d like to move forward and do cool stuff. I want to work for something I love and I want .

There is a common expression… ‘It is sooner than you think’

I must not remain static.

 

 

Stood in an Empty Room, Looking Awkward

It’s time for a fresh blog, again. I find myself writing about things that I think should be in an art blog, rather than things that are actually important and relevant to my art path. I need to declutter the creative part of my brain in order to make room for more innovative junk -it’s getting pretty crammed in there, so I’m gonna dump it all here.

For a change, there is no aim to this blog, other than to keep it honest and very “Zara”. No doubt this blog will act as some kind personal journal at some point, I tend to get too relaxed after a few entries and before I know it I’m spewing all kinds of drama. It’s occured to me that maybe I want to spew. After all, this blog is public which tells me that there is a chance of somebody reading it, somewhere. I’ll try to keep it art-focused (as that is the intention) but there’ll be no promises as such. As some kind of pre-warning, it’s probably worth mentioning that I’m not the most positive of people and pretty much live my life based on but-what-ifs and worst-case-scenarios. It’s the only way I can function without juggling too much anxiety at once. There are also no promises of weekly posts or regular updates because sometimes I just don’t feel like doing reports; I have no energy. I often undersleep as well, and during those times I’m pretty much the worst person I know -I’m very grumpy and very sad. Most days my eyes are in a constant state of tiredness and I don’t want to do anything -even make time for art. Anyway, nobody likes sleep deprivation -do they? Although I quite like it if it means I get cool dreams and feel a bit out of sync for a bit. I might get short bursts of creativity if my brain is being a bit weird, and that feels quite good. I’ve probably mentioned this on other blogs before… I do have a tendancy to repeat myself -another pre-warning.

I’m hoping this blog doesn’t end up like one of the many unfinished sketchbooks on my art shelf. The books usually begin really neat… drawings I’m more that happy with for the first few pages, followed by a few rubbish ones, then one that went really wrong, a few doodles and notes (because at this point I’ve given up on the sketchbook being a sketchbook -it’s now on the level of “jotter”) ending with blank pages that will never be filled. At this point, I’ll buy a new one. I must quit this dreadful habit of, not only paper wasting, but giving up on my work that may, in future, be useful for ideas and learning curves. My art teacher at school always said ‘you must never throw art away and/or forget about it. If it’s something you dislike you can always work on it at a later date and make it better’ Not sure whether it’s a good idea these days…I’m already an avid hoarder. The idea of recycling appeals to me though, maybe I could chop it all up and keep the best bits…Hmm. Right, I’m going off on a tangent. Besides, you can’t really chop up blogs up anyway. Not really. Okay…special efforts to make sure blog stays alive and continues moving forwards. Circles might be okay, but not a backward motion of any kind.

Hallway Art

abstract

This picture shows the first five layers of the painting that will eventually be hanging in my hallway, or if it’s really great… my living room! I thoroughly enjoyed starting this piece and It’d be nice if it were hung before summer arrived. I’ll probably brighten it up a bit before I finally declare it finished, but we’ll see. I’m literally painting as I go with this one. I have to be feeling when brush touches canvas.

Reflections on Life Drawing Class

I’ve obviously not been keeping up with this blog as promised, but these things happen. However, art has been happening and I’ve attended my life drawing classes as regularly as possible, eventhough I’ve just had to miss a few due to other commitments. Work is the biggest obstacle, but I’ve managed to attend two sessions so far and they’ve both been brilliant! It is, by far, one of the most friendly groups I have ever become a part of and I shall be attending the next one in less than a week (:

I have learnt so much in just two classes, and not just about the drawing side of things, either; The first thing I noticed immediately, was the importance of lighting. Something I’ve never really thought about until recently. During the first session, it came to my attention that the lighting was very flat, and as a novice ‘life drawing artist’ I found it difficult to capture the depth and shape of the human form. According to the organisers, there is sometimes a lamp set up to show definiton of shadows – I am particularly looking forward to a session like this and may even replace my pencils for white pastel on dark paper.

The second thing that came to my attention was the diversity of models. The first model seemed to have more curves than the second and each pose was very similar and natural-looking, whereas the second model had less curves, but a lot more interesting poses. It’s obviously a matter of opinion, but my preference so far, seems to lean towards the more dynamic poser. I like the challenge of attempting new angles and weird positions. I look forward to that particular second model posing again.

Thirdly, the seat you choose can also have a dramatic affect on the outcome of your work. There were some artists who could visually see more chair than body and at one point I could only see a mass of hair and bit of shoulder. I wonder… Is this up to the model to vary their position in order for a full class to view in turn? Should we, the artists, move to a more appropriate viewing area on each pose? Or should we try to ignore the chair and static objects, whilst making the most of our situation? 

I imagine to the more experienced artist that I may appear not to have a clue what I am talking about -ha! but these are the little ‘thought marbles’ rolling around in my head. Where else better to talk about these things other than on my art blog?

I shall see how some of these questions unfold as the classes progress.

Okie dokie. This evening I shall post some images of my latest work. At least it may distract you from my appalling grammar, eh? 😛

Over and out.

Collage/Mixed Media

PEEPO

Tonight I’ve been playing around with collage/mixed media. This is one of the few mini pieces I completed this evening. It’s pencil, watercolour and ink on A6 card. It’s not a masterpiece, but it is part of yet another side-project for my sketchbook. It was fun exploring something other than acrylics and fineliner, and I’m going to do some more of this kind of thing soon. For now, I’m currently working on two portraits which should hopefully be completed by mid-February.

As always, thank you for supporting my art 🙂

Art Over French

It’s taken me a while, but I’ve finally managed to take the first steps towards making my blog appear a bit jazzy. Do take a look around.

Whilst I originally intended to solely post my art work, it has recently come to light that I will most likely benefit from the written word, as well. I’m hoping that through regular blogging I will be able find some kind of theme for my new portfolio.

For now, here’s a bit of information you don’t really need to know, but something that’s relevant to my new art journey…

I recently decided to leave university. I’ve been a student of French for a couple of years, working towards a degree in Modern Languages. My marks were often above average, it was something I was good at and I enjoyed it, most of the time. However, during the course I often found myself replacing potential study-time with a new drawing. And then, feeling guilty about it. There were many times I considered dropping everything for a career in art, but I either convinced myself I weren’t good enough or insisted that it was too late to start. How could I involve art in my life alongside my language studies? I settled for evening classes once a week, and through the course I had made two brilliant friends, including my new art tutor -a wonderful man with the patience of a saint and a heart of gold. I would always leave the lesson feeling inspired and even more tempted to make art a bigger part of my life. I never did anything about it. Ever.

Christmas 2014, my art teacher (and dear friend) suddenly passed away. It was truly shocking and a very sad time for many. During this period, I made the decision to leave my language course and pursue a new creative path. This is something I’ve never been brave enough to do, but through the inspiration of my tutor I am finally going to do it. Forget about time. The place to be is here and now.

There will always be a special place in my heart for French, and no doubt I’ll continue to learn in the future, but for now I am happy. I feel content with my decision.

It was my intention to apply for a position in art school this year, but after a long think it seemed more sensible to wait until my portfolio is a sure pass –something it currently isn’t, but certainly something I’m capable of putting together for next year.

And so, my journey has begun…

Some Words

Thank you very much to each visitor of my blog. I really do love sharing my art, just as much as I love perusing others’ work, too. I sincerely hope you enjoy my posts.

I have also set up a Facebook page for my work if you fancy a wander…

https://www.facebook.com/zarawilsonart

I’m looking forward to more sketching tonight and maybe even some collage work. I’ll see what the night brings.

-Zara-

New Painting

This is the latest of my new works -‘Three Tomato Vine’.

It’s the first ‘still life’ I have painted in a very long time, and it turned out okay, despite the dim lighting I had to work with. This piece is acrylics on canvas (my current favourite materials).

I’m looking forward to posting more drawings soon, too. I’ve made a really positive start in my sketchbook: Lots of anatomical drawings and fineliner work. All sketching is good sketching.

Three Tomato Vine

Anatomical Sketchbook

You’ll be seeing a lot of my anatomical sketches in the following weeks to come. The human anatomy is something that I’ve never focused on- in drawing terms- but it’s certainly an area I hope to improve in. Today I sketched my hands using fineliner -the first two drawings for my sketchbook. I found proportion quite challenging, but with practice…

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Yes, I Still Heart Art

Righty-ho! Just had a massive glance at this blog -What on earth is going on? So much junk. So much absolute crap. In fact, the cringe-factor is so strong I am literally holding on to my face for dear life. I lost the ability to write somewhere along the line. Unfortunately, I’m far too sentimental to delete posts so apologies all round.

Uhm. I might actually write about my art today, which was the original purpose of this blog in the first place. For a while now I’ve been dabbling in lots of crafty stuff but not really getting anywhere. I suppose I never really focused on anything specific and just hoped something great might happen. And well, it’s not really. Not in the art form anyway. And this is okay because for once, rather than feeling stressed and pressured about needing to make sure the art is done, I’ve felt free to experiment at my own pace without the deadlines, and that gives me a wonderful feeling. I’ve made the decision to create a new blog that will consist solely of my art. This should be ready next week, as I’m still in the process of organising my work. It really is all over the place. I’m a bit of a douche like that.

Meanwhile, I’ve been completing a few art pieces for friends. I still have a watercolour pencil feline to finish, along with an anonymous portrait in acrylic and two portraits of Ralph Steadman in ink. They’re all going pretty well. I’ll be sure to post the completed work on my new blog when it’s ready.

Au revoir for now.