Derek Gores

Derek Gores is a visual artist from New York.

Gores uses materials such a recycled magazines, newspapers, maps and data to create portraits on canvas’. Gores work is very playful and he is able to capture great detail in his pieces whilst creating a kind of puzzle. Rearranging scrap materials, Gores is able to go from piles of recyclable material to realism from a far; but as the viewer comes closer the pieces of scrap material become more pronoun and the realism starts to fade away.

This piece below is one of Gores pieces called ‘On the Line’.

What I really enjoy about this piece by Gores is how it appears to be both simplistic and complicated at the same time.

The simplistic side of this piece lies with his choice of colour.

Going for a black and white finish with a pop of colour through out really helps to keep your attention on the recycled materials. Anything colourful would make the piece appear to be very busy but this way you are able to see the subject clearly but also focus on the material.

For my own work I want my recycled materials to be a focus point but also not be too distracting. By using a similar method to Gores piece about, I will be able to accomplish this.

Layering

For my final piece this year I want to use the layering techniques I have learnt the past few weeks to create texture and depth in my work.

What I really enjoy about collage is being able to layer things together to create different kinds of backgrounds which will then become the base of my final outcome.

Underneath a few examples of the experimentation I have done with layering.

With this first piece I think the technique with clingfilm has really worked successfully. By using the clingfilm the colour of the watercolour paints are darker in the areas where the plastic clung to the card. I really like the effect this has.

What I could do better with this I choose colours which compliment each other better. The browns, orange and yellow seem very murky and not very eye catching. Next time I will be using brighter colours that look more aesthetically pleasing.

With this second piece I decided to experiment with newspaper as well as using the other techniques I have learnt. The news paper gives this piece more detail and compliments the clingfilm technique quite well.

On my next attempt with this I think I will layer different shades of blue and see what effect this has.

I also want to work on using whole pieces of newspaper that are not wrapped up as a base for my next pieces. I think this could add more detail and layers to work.

Experimenting with Newspaper

Working with newspaper really made me think about how I can put across my point and create awareness with my work as an artist.

I was think a lot about ways of creating layers with newspaper when I started thinking about creating my own.

One of the most influential platforms for spreading stories and getting a message across is by reading the news wether that’s in a paper form or on some kind of social media or television.

Above is my first experimental piece with the idea around making my own newspaper as a way of spreading a message. This first piece I did is just part of a title that could be printed in a paper. I used silicone stamps and an ink pad to stop a title and then drew a boarder around the top and bottom. The bottom line would be where the article would start.

This next piece I have made was experimenting with the placement of my title on a possible page and also a test with a white ink pad. I wasn’t sure if the white ink would print very well on the black watercolour paint but it seemed to print fine. The ink does smudge but this is something that can be left to dry.

My next piece I wanted to set out what possible article could look like. I used different sized stamps to create the large heading and the smaller heading for the writer of the article. I then began to draw lines where I could possibly write my own text and print it onto the paper or even find a way to transfer text over.

The coloured blue box is where the image for the article would be and this is something that I can paint using watercolour and layer with the layering techniques I’ve been using whilst doing collage pieces.

I really like this idea of creating a newspaper and this is something that I can experiment with for the exhabition.

For example, could I make this an interactive installation where I have multiple copies printed and stacked like in a shop or have someone sat with the paper open reading.

Catalogue Piece’s

My submission for the catalogue were 4 mixed media collage pieces.

These pieces are made on A5 card using a few techniques that I have learnt from developing my knowledge in collage.

The first technique I used was using ripped pieces of masking tape as my first layer before applying watercolour paint. The ripped edges soak in the paint and leave a darker edge. I really like the effect this for the first layer of my collage. I also used ripped pieces of newspaper on top of the tape.

The second layer on my collage was watercolour paint and cling film. This technique consists of adding a sloppy layer of watery watercolour and then going in with a darker colour in areas that I wanted darker. Once I had done this is used a layer of crinkled clingfilm to lay on top of the wet paint and leave to the side to dry. Once the paint was dry, I pulled back the clingfilm and what is left is a really amazing effect that looks kind of like the sun hitting the sea. This kind of technique is great for layering in collage pieces and creating texture.

After doing these first few techniques, I then began to paint turtles and Koi fish onto my first two pieces of card and then pieces of rubbish on the third.

After painting these, I covered the card in PVA glue and added a layer of clingfilm on top. I then used a heat gun to meltdown the edges of the plastic and parts of the clingfilm in the centre. After this I used a black sharpie to write “SEA TURTLE’S AND OTHER ANIMAL’S WERE HARMED IN THE DEVELOPMENT OF OUR BRIGHT IDEAS”.

The reason I chose to write this on top is because the actions we take to develop our quality of life has major effects on the environment. Pollution is something that has developed with what we develop and if we had realised sooner maybe we wouldn’t have caused as much harm to our surroundings.

Overall I’m really pleased with this piece. I really liked using block writing on my work and I want to be able to continue this onto my next pieces.

Experimenting with Tape

Another technique that I have been trying out is layering tape with watercolour.

What I have been doing is using strips of ripped masking tape and sticking them down on the card before adding watercolour paint. Once the paint is dry I then added more tape going in different directions and then added watercolour paint again.

I really like this technique because it gives a visible layered effect and I like how this looks with the paint on top.

This piece above was my first attempt at using tape with watercolour. At this point of the process I was extremely happy with the outcome. Underneath the layers of dark purple are layers of tape with a lighter blue and I think that layering the blue underneath the purple helped to give the purple a more unique and brighter tone. I really love how layered the tape makes the piece look.

After completing the first part of the process, I thought about lifting off the tape to reveal the pattern of colours underneath. This for me is where the process went down hill. After removing the masking tape (which was hard to remove as it was stuck down very well), what was left underneath did not look as nice as what was there before.

Moving on from this I think I would put a layer of watercolour down as a base before taping so that when the tape is removed later it is not plain white underneath. Also I would make sure to tap the masking tape on my clothing before sticking it down as this will help to remove the stickiness and will be easier to peel back later.

Above is my second attempt and what I did differently this time was add pieces of plain ripped tape onto of my piece. I really like how this looks as the original colour of the masking tape contrasts well this the painted card.

Experimenting with Clingfilm

With my collage pieces I have been experimenting with techniques that can help to create layering effects.

The first technique that I experimented with was using clingfilm with watercolour.

What I have done was firstly lay down a sloppy, watery layer of watercolour and then go back into the areas where I wanted the colour to be more concentrated. After doing this I then layer a crinkled piece of clingfilm on top of the paint and left it to dry.

By doing this the paint dries but creates a really cool textured pattern that looks like running water or waves crashing together.

I really like the way this technique comes out and its something I will be continuing to use for my pieces.

The first trial I did with this technique was with darker colours. This first attempt in my eyes is a fail as the pattern of the clingfilm is not noticeable straight away, you really have to search for it. This is something I did not want, I wanted the pattern of the clingfilm to be more loud and capturing.

My second attempt I started with lighter yellows before working my way up to the darker and brighter orange tones. This experiment turned out very successfully as the clingfilm pattern stand out a lot more then my first attempt and has left a lovely texture look that I was hoping for.

Formative Assessment

Updated Artist Statement

How does sustainability affect our surroundings and how does it affect our lives? Are we living every day in ways which are creating a positive or negative effect on sustainability? Is becoming unsustainable something we should be worried about now and if so, what can we do as a community to help? Sustainability to me is something that is not talked about enough in our day to day lives. Is this something we’re taking seriously? Over the past few years I have realised how much sustainability and the environment has become a sort of passion of mine. With my work currently my main focus is to spread awareness through art about sustainability issues. I think that art has the power to speak to people in a way in which we can’t speak to each other and sending strong messages with my practice is something that has become important to me recently.

Documentation

Mixed Media Textiles?

Use of Collage

PVA Glue idea

Contextualisation

Philadelphia’s Magic Garden

Mural Mile

Lance Letcher

Exhibition Proposal

Recently with my work I have been stuck behind a brick wall. With my work I like to experiment and play around with different materials and finding my focus can sometimes be quite daunting to me. Using a mixed media approach for my work means that I am able to still explore with different materials instead of being focused on just one.

For my exhibition for the degree show I want to create 3 medium scale pieces using a mixed media approach. I want my pieces to not be flat against the surface but to come out at you and have a three-dimensional effect. I’m not 100% sure on how I am going to arrange my imagery for this but I want to include typography in so way also.

My main materials at this moment will be medium scale wooden boards, litter, white wall paint, dark ink or watered down acrylic paint and PVA glue.

For my area I don’t have any special requirements in regards to spacing and lighting as I plan on my work to be quite harsh and dark in colour in some ways. The boards themselves I will hang from the wall but I’m not sure which is the best approach for this. I may be able to attach strong string or wire around the back to hang depending on the weight of the mirror.

Thought process building up to degree show

Jan 23rd – Now that my dissertation is over and handed in with its artefact I have been able to focus my mind the past two days on the exhibition proposal which is my next deadline. I’ve been think recently about what decisions I need to make regarding my content for the degree show. The work that I want to produce I think is going to be my biggest yet as I am very used to working on a smaller scale with a lot of detail. Working on large pieces can be quite scary for me as sometimes looking at a blank canvas can be quite daunting. I want to over come this fear of being ‘scared of the canvas’ as sometime I feel like it holds me back from creating bigger and better pieces. I’ve decided that working on medium to large pieces will suit me better with the materials I am thinking of using.

Feb 2nd- Recently I have switched up my chosen media and created a few small scale collage pieces with wording on them. I’ve really enjoyed doing this as I think I am able to capture detail better then when I was creating work with the textile weaving. I think this is something I am going to continue and see where it develops in the next few weeks on the build up to choosing what I want to create for my exhibition proposal.

Feb 17th – Over the past week or two I have really enjoyed creating layered collage pieces using watercolour paints, acrylic and other materials. I am able to create amazing textures using cling film which create a crashing waves kind of texture but also by layering paints. Eve though I have really enjoyed doing this I feel as if I’ve lost my original intentions of what I want to create since September. I wanted to be able to use waste in with my work and creating flatter collage pieces has made this very difficult. I want to go back to a technique that I used during my time doing my foundation diploma. This technique is using a large amount of PVA glue on wooden board to stick all these large waste items together that I will then be able to work on top of. It is currently unclear to be how I am going to use collage with this but I am hoping to develop this idea over the next few weeks.

Mar 5th – Building up to the next formative assessment I have been able to make some decisions in regards to what I want to produce and how I am going to do it. After working on both collage and textile pieces I am going to collaborate collage work with my larger scale PVA glue idea. This week I am going to start experimenting with this. The drying process with the amount of PVA glue might be something that takes a few days so this is something I need to keep in mind.

Updated Artist Statement

How does sustainability affect our surroundings and how does it affect our lives? Are we living every day in ways which are creating a positive or negative effect on sustainability? Is becoming unsustainable something we should be worried about now and if so, what can we do as a community to help? Sustainability to me is something that is not talked about enough in our day to day lives. Is this something we’re taking seriously? Over the past few years I have realised how much sustainability and the environment has become a sort of passion of mine. With my work currently my main focus is to spread awareness through art about sustainability issues. I think that art has the power to speak to people in a way in which we can’t speak to each other and sending strong messages with my practice is something that has become important to me recently.