Two days of further concentration difficulties have resulted in this rather crummy video, yet I feel it is going in the right direction. I hope I can get a good deal more done this coming Monday, before I jett off back to N.I. for a big family shindig. Clearly the distance ‘twixt arms and legs is highlighting the need for me to draw an entire body, but that will come in time, on a new layer. So far, the pressure tool on Photoshop is giving me some pleasure – almost real brush-like strokes.
Can this be Yoriko Mizushiri, too?
Firstly, Shishi Yamazaki (greatest website)
These pieces have all the dancing a girl could need. Plus, the beauty of shitting out cherry blossoms is a much-overlooked phenomenon in today’s society.
Yamazaki appears to be part of a wonderful collective (?) called Shibu Karu, a whole bunch of Japanese wondergals, including another star of the animated shorts from last year’s Leeds International Film Festival, Yoriko Mizushiri.
My concentration is not functional today. Not functional. Still, here is the newest development in this FMP-plannin’ – I figure I will not have the time to animate a wide open plane, so my thinkin’ is that I’ll shrink the aspect down width-ways, see? Either that, or create some kind of intra-dimensional doorways for the dancers to slip in and out of. I still feel lacking a solid basic premise, but argue myself out of that corner hourly with real-life hip rotations.
Much more effort needed tomorrow.
一 Sylvia Sleigh I only spotted these beautiful, hairy nudes in gift shop on my way out. The luxuriant masses of hair in Sleigh’s paintings speak of a decadence too often rejected in the modern, flesh-gazing world.
三 Richard Hawkins’ Hajikata Twist
Featuring exciting turns of phrase from the translated notes of Eikoh Hosoe, such as ‘flowering epileptic pus’, and glimmers of magnificently strange painted artworks, including (四) Jean Dubuffet’s The Tree of Fluids:
五 Louise Bourgeois’ Topiary: The Art of Improving Nature – beautiful parallels drawn in this series between over-pruning/artificial enhancement and the destruction of the health of the whole organism in both plants and humans (particularly women):
六 The word ‘Gesamtkunstwerk‘, meaning ‘translated as total work of art, ideal work of art, universal artwork, synthesis of the arts, comprehensive artwork, all-embracing art form or total artwork… is a work of art that makes use of all or many art forms or strives to do so’
七 (Very important now) Len Lye’s Free Radicals. Stumbling on this piece in the way that I did had a profound effect on me. My preconceptions were shattered, I felt so full of potential, so new and fresh and filled with enthusiasm. Looking at it now, on the computer screen – on YouTube, no less – I can’t reclaim that feeling. The small, dark enclosure for the screening was essential to the power of the piece. The sudden, independent, and personal realisation of the perfect synchronicity between the audio and the visual while being fully immersed by both was a moving experience. Gaze upon it now anyway, it has made me certain my FMP needs to be a projected piece:
The attendant in the room also let me in on Lye’s motivation. He says Lye was on a mission to find out what makes us happy.
八 Henri Gaudier-Brzeska, a French sculptor and draughtsman. I quickly became a fan, caught by one of his more colourful pieces:
九 Valie Export’s Action Pants: Genital Panic, just look:
十 Robert Longo’s Sword of the Pig:
十一 Hélio Oiticica’s Tropicália, Penetrables PN 2 ‘Purity is a myth’ and PN 3 ‘Imagetical’ 1966-1967
This is something I would push anyone to go see, and don’t much fancy going into much detail on what this actually is, for the physical interaction with the piece is key to ‘Oiticica’s hope that this sense of engagement would spread to all areas of [the viewers’] lives’. One of the most entertaining and interesting pieces of art I have seen in a gallery – though I benefitted massively from the guidance of a fascinating gallery assistant. I thank her from the centre of my enriched soul.
The plan for this session was to go for the overhead projector again, but sadly the bulb had blown. We settled for some mood lighting instead from a duo of little lamps. I was glad to have a male model in this time, as I want the figures in my FMP animation to convey human sexuality in a broad spectrum:
I need to try harder with colour, and remember to bring coloured pencils whenever the next session is on, coz my pastel work ain’t up to much:
Marker works OK, but I could do with practicing more in subjects from life. It is difficult to balance the light and dark – I think I could be more generous with dots, and less reliant on the lines in future. Or work with a greater sparsity of line.
This life drawing session, led by Gareth Wadkin, employed the humble overhead projector to add a new dynamic to the regular old figure drawing. ‘Viewing the body as a canvas’ has become a vital point of focus in my thinking for this FMP. While I try to visualise how my proposed dancing figures will be semi-clothed, this exercise worked brilliantly for my understanding of how the mounds and dips in the human form interact and distort the patterns projected.
Simple zig-zag pattern:
No acetate here, just that dramatic spotlight:
And then some regular old poses and drawings to finish the session:
The third screening in my month of grown-up animation for the Leeds College of Art Students Union Film Society (LCASUFS) was René Laloux’s La Planète Sauvage. Another fancy trip through strange and unknown plains that (I hoped) would prompt more introspective speculation as well as a little look at the significance of all forms of life, or an opening of sticky cognitive doors. This screening was much more of a success – 10 audience members! I think the funky French soundtrack playing loud may have enticed them all the more down to the basement – the poster was more straightforward too. Just graphite drawings scanned in and coloured in Photoshop:
Then my awful type on top of that:
Dance again featured as an important (maybe even the ultimate) activity for the Draags – though it is interesting that this ‘strange courtship ritual’ is acted out in other giant beasts on another planet – the Draags, using their transcendental meditation to become the ‘heads’ of the alien headless nudes, control the bodies in an elegant ballroom-style dance. These hyper intelligent beings, doing their courtship through an outside and non-Draag medium – akin to some of those fancy post- and trans-human ideas.