Monday, 6 December 2010

Recent Work

So I decided to look back over what work I’d been producing and analyse it in a bit more detail. When looking back over my “unconscious diary” I noticed circles were one of the things which appeared a considerable amount in my doodles. I also realised that every time I draw without any real thinking behind what I’m drawing I always seem to produce circular shapes or patterns ! There were a few other things which seemed to appear frequently, however circles are what really stood out to me !

I decided to research into circles and their meanings in more detail. “Circles – science, sense and symbol” by Nicholas Wade is a book which I got out the library which has really influenced / inspired me greatly in the current work I’ve been experimenting with. Coincidently Nicholas Wade is a Professor of Visual Psychology at Dundee which I didn’t realise when I rented out this book ! I’m planning to try and get in touch with him so we can meet up and have a chat about some of my ideas and about circles in general. He references many artists in his book and is also an artist himself so I’m hoping he will be up for having a look at some of my work / ideas !

From starting to experiment and research into circles in more detail I have become quite obsessed with them! I have also started to combine circles with the automatic writing I have produced which has resulted in some very interesting effects ! Circles have a huge amount of different meanings and ideas surrounding them. Some of the main ones I have become interested in are – infinity, dividing a plane into two regions (interior and exterior), symmetry, religion and similarity. Nicholas Wade also spoke in length about the unconscious and how circles are related to this which I found very interesting considering this is what I have been producing work based around.

Unfortunately a lot of my experiments are on my laptop (which I don’t have at the moment) but I have included a few experiments I have produced using Illustrator below.






You could experiment for days on end with circles using illustrator. It’s so easy to play about with overlaying / repeating them which results in some very interesting effects ! Often optical illusions are created without even pre planning them,!


Below are some sketchbook pages I have produced experimenting with circles further



Here I have wrote out some of the automatic writing in a circle and then carried on writing over the top to produce this layered effect. I really like this piece and I think it provides a platform to produce some further interesting works in a similar way ! How the text is indistinguishable is suggestive of how often the unconscious often is ! It also keeps the idea of the unconscious being personal. I like how other people don’t know what the text says yet I do. 




This piece of work was created in the same way, however different radial lengths used. Both the first and second piece have different attributes. I really like the projections of y’s g’s etc (the tails of certain letters) into the middle of the circle in the previous work however in this one this also appeals to me but there feels like there’s more of a pulse to this piece. It almost feels alive which is what I like about it.



In one of my tutorials with Mark Wallace we discussed the idea of duality which I became very interested in. The circle with it being symmetrical has strong links with duality and dualism and in this piece of work I began to experiment with this idea further. I wanted to keep everything symmetrical but also link the energy of the circles – I achieved this by using lines to link 2 circles together (with the line having to touch the edge of each one). I then carried this on until a pattern / shape I felt had a good vibe about it was formed.


OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA         “Discovery”

This piece began as one of my random collages which I also worked back into without pre thinking about the end result. I decided to produce one of these circular geometric patterns over the top of this collage as I thought the controlled lines and shapes of one of these patterns would work in contrast to the freedom and emotion of the background it would be produced upon.  I exhibited this piece of work at this semester’s VISUALYZE and from speaking to a few people about it it seemed to be received pretty well. I think this piece provides a platform to produce some more works similar to this. The contrast works really well. It’s almost combining classicism and romanticism in one piece which could be a bit bizarre but for some reason really works.




This is a piece of work I’m still working on. It’s using the same idea of overlaying automatic writing I have produced but this time having the writing come from the middle of the circle. I like the idea of the writing coming from all the madness of the middle (similar to the madness of the unconscious) and then becoming clearer the further out it goes (as the unconscious does when it gets revealed and analysed.) Maybe in future works I will experiment with the text becoming clearer so it can actually be read.

Whilst I have been experimenting with circles I have also carried on producing some “automatic drawings and doodles" often in an altered mind state which seems to allow the unconscious to show more easily.




I haven’t yet gone back and analysed this work, however I don’t really want to with these works as it would take away something from them I think. It began by pouring wax spontaneously onto the sketchbook page and then working from this. I only allowed myself to work on this piece in an altered mind state and I think this shows. I really enjoy looking at this piece as different things seem to appear all the time. This is what seems to happen whilst drawing with an altered state of mind, your hand constantly flows and draws different things which is why these types of drawings are always so interesting to look at afterwards.




This is another piece I have produced whilst in an altered mind state. However for some reason it seems a lot more controlled. Eyes are something I often draw. Again circles appear in eyes, so circles appear through once again !

I feel I have really started to get somewhere with my work now and I’m excited to continue experimenting with these ideas further ! 

Sunday, 5 December 2010

Retchy v Smash @ VISUALYZE

RetchyvSmash@Visualyze2 from RetchyvSmash on Vimeo.

VISUALYZE 10/11/10

This VISUALYZE was definitely another success ! We had a lot more people through the doors than last time and a much larger interest in people wanting to exhibit / showcase their talent through us !

This semester we had 3 floors of work, with Floor 5 being the main club night space. The other spaces we used as exhibition space were The Carnegie Suite and Liars and Cheats (a long space located just off the Liar Bar.) We were able to successfully transform all of these spaces into suitable locations for exhibiting work – from canvas paintings to film to sculpture to music ! We catered for a large variety of disciplines making it possible for pretty much anyone to showcase their talent at VISUALYZE !

Through a crazy amount of organisation Myself and Sylvia were able to pull off another great night which involved over 35 artists, 2 VJ acts and 9 musical acts ! Through setting up the lighting to making sure the set up for the musicians was right to going through the poster designs with our graphic designer to promoting the event itself along with thousands of other little things we were able to provide a platform for artists and musicians to showcase the great talent students and artists at both DoJ and within Dundee have !

2nd Year Fine Artist Bryndis Blackadder with Model Darren Kerrigan

3rd Year Art, Philosophy and Contemporary Practiser Katy Meehan’s Performance Piece

Time Based Artist Edward Shallow performing his set up in Floor 5 with Visuals from Retchy v Smash

Time Based Artist Eildh Morris’ film shown within the film tent in Floor 5

One of the Live Art Boards half way through the night !

3rd Year Illustrator Sally Hackett’s flag piece up in Floor 5

Master of Design Student Maria Maclennan’s Altered Book displayed in The Carnegie Suite

Maria's Website

3rd Year Art, Philosophy and Contemporary Practiser Emma McKendrick’s Photography Piece

Sarah Coloso performing her Acoustic set up in Floor 5

3rd Year Graphic Designer Kirsty Turpie’s Flag piece up in Floor 5

3rd Year Fine Artist / Musician Rachel Badger performing her Acoustic Set up in Floor 5

Retchy v Smash providing us with some great Visuals to accompany the music

IMD Students “Slash / Dash” performing their set up in Floor 5

Some grooving going on down earlier on in the night !

Some good old socialising !

People working on the Live Art Boards

Jam Factory (Tom Raitt – 3rd Year Fine Art, Colin Morton – 3rd Year Fine Art, Gordon Miller – 2nd Year TBA) performing their set up in Floor 5

Surgyn’s set up in Floor 5

A great end to a great night !

The week after VISUALYZE I visited home in Liverpool. Whilst I was back I spoke to a variety of DJ’S and club venues who were really interested in me bringing VISUALYZE down to Liverpool ! I plan to take this idea forward after I graduate and take VISUALYZE to a variety of cities outside Dundee. It’s a unique night which people I’m sure would love to experience and taking it to other places would mean an even bigger variety of work as well as promoting Dundee and DoJ as the birth of this exciting and different club night which can only going to get bigger and better !

Photo’s taken by Bryndis Blackadder, Sylvia Law and Myself ! Many thanks for letting me use them !