Artist Statement and Final Post

When I began the Fine Art course I was confident in the work that I produced, unaware of the journey that I was beginning. I understand that the list below could include posts from before 3rd year but I feel that the previous work was not as informed as my current project and I would like to show the steps that I took to achieve the work that I have set up for the exhibition. The journeys that I present at the start of the second year do show signs of my curiosity in colour and form but I did not push the idea at that point.

If you were to scroll back through my time at Cardiff Met it is possible to see the full transformation through my work. As I step out of the protective covering that is being a student I am excited by the future, but mostly I am glad that I can say that with everything I have had to face these three years I know that I have become a stronger person able to tackle whatever the world has to throw at me.

1. Painting on larger scale!

2. Colour codes (Full set images)

3. Studies in red, yellow and blue

4. 9x A4 Structural paintings

5. Structural colour studies


1. Contemporary Artist (collection)

2. Wassily Kandinsky

3. Sean Scully

4. Carmen Herrera

5. Josef Albers

Installation of Degree Show work 1 & 2

Link to Presentation (Shared on Google Drive)


Artist Statement:

42AB (Ithaca)

This colour series explores the contemporary condition of colour within geometric forms. Inspired by the philosophies of early 20th Century theorists, who collectively explored the potential of colour and form. My investigations have allowed me to re-imagine colour theory with new possibilities for how colour can be approached in contemporary painting. I offer the viewer a vibrant experience that is separate from the familiar bombardment of day-to-day visual encounters.

Indulge me for a moment and imagine every possible colour; Reds. Blues. Yellows. Let them fill your mind. Now I invite you to see what I see.


Degree Show Build

When I first saw the map I was excited as I had the perfect number of walls! However, after a health and safety check, it was decided that the half wall would restrict access to the MFA study area. This means that I will have fewer walls to work with, and so need to work out a different way of hanging the paintings, or hanging only three of the pieces.

I decide that I need to make the best of this and after re-measuring I came up with a way of presenting the work that might actually end up looking better than the original portrait rotation. I worked out that the walls and two paintings at a landscape orientation are the same size. I, therefore, have been playing with how to balance the wall space with the size of the paintings. The main thing is that the walls are used but with not too much of a gap between each one. The landscape orientation does actually seem to be the better option because it will give a more intense colour experience as it will have less white wall at the top and bottom, making it more of a pillar of colour.

I am also trying to work out where I am going to put the statement in relation to the paintings. I would like the statement to be the first thing that people encounter and then look across at the pieces. Also, I will say that I am concerned that if audiences want to step back they might knock into the ceramic work behind them, which I have discussed with the artist. She has said that she is unconcerned with this but I think is planning to change her set up slightly to take this into consideration.
The main moment that I worked out this new method of presenting the work was when I was looking back over my blog. While looking at an image of the A2 paintings, I thought about how it would look landscape:
This is how I now see the paintings being displayed but on the larger scale, and so the next diagram shows two of the preferred ways of hanging the paintings but it will ultimately come down to what happens when I have the work in front of the wall.
Update 08/05/17:
After the weekend it was agreed that an extra half wall would be added to the 3 walls. This has meant that I have a new half wall to prepare, which is no worries as I have plenty of time. As well as meaning that I can return to my original wall hanging design!

Painting on the larger scale!

It was so exciting when the paper turned up. I remember my studio neighbours commenting on the size of the box, so it was daunting when I first put the paper up to start painting on. The hardest aspect of this was balancing the upscaling process so that they are neither too big or too small for the paper. I am very glad that I did all 12 of the original size because it means that I am now very comfortable with how the forms and colour tones compliment each other. Becuase I am now working towards the degree show I have limited myself to six of the codes, choosing from the original 12.

As well as having to consider the scaling of the paper I have considered the colours that I have selected, buying from two companies that I have used. (Windsor & Newton, top. Seawhites of Brighton, bottom)

At first, thinking that I would be choosing from these available colours I did the test pieces above, the main issue that I could see being that while the colours are similar they have different positive qualities from higher pigments to textural differences. As a curiosity test, I then mixed the two paints together:

Once I had seen how these colours sat on the watercolour paper and mixed with each other, and the tonal aspect I decided that these were the colours that I was going to work with.

And so I began to work on the paintings which can be seen below:

Once I had the paper on the wall I was able to able to work out the measurements so that I could plan for how much space I would need for the degree show.

My hope is that I will be able to get 3 and a half walls but this will be a very large space to fill. The diagram above shows how I would prefer to be able to show the pieces, I will have to work out which of the pieces should go where but this, realistically, can only be done when I can put them all out in front of the wall.

Up the scale

Instead of presenting the A2 colour codes I am going to produce six larger pieces that just focus on the primary colours. My main focus has been on the enjoyment of colour and form, and so creating a piece that represents this in its original set up but on a larger scale feels like the most successful outcome. Of course, I can see this project going on past my degree, where I will start to create more complex pieces as the code progresses towards a more diverse mixture.

Based on the materials that I have been using I have decided to look for watercolour paper that is at a high gsm. There is Fabriano paper that is used by most others in the studio. However, I wanted to explore and see what else was available, especially as large amounts of Fabriano is rolled which would mean cutting to size, and flattening, which would not have produced the crisp finish that I desire. I happened to find Atlantis produce large pieces of watercolour paper at 400gsm that is shipped flat and is pre-cut to a size that measures larger than A0!

It was very daunting when the paper arrived as it was wonderfully large but the quality is very apparent, and I am happy with the texture so that I can get a similar finish to what I was able to produce with the A4 and A2 paintings!

Summary for Formative Assessment – March

The work that I am presenting, and will be continuing to produce for the degree show follows my journey as I try to process the death of my Grandad. Over the last few months I have made positive steps and have found that I am now able to rediscover my ability to play with colour, while at the same time processing the emotional times that I have had to face this year. My work has always been an extension of myself and my internal feelings, but the work I am currently producing is even more intuitive than it had been before. Utilizing my understanding of colour, form and tone I am hoping to create an exhibition that aesthetically beautiful, but overpowering visually.

The only painting on the wall currently that represents this darkness is the first painting I was able to do after months of not being able to pick up a brush. The lost and lonely boat guided by the hope of the shooting star. The rest of the work shows the shifts that I have gone through in the last few weeks, with brighter colours that are forming into a language. I have begun looking into the writings of Kandinsky as he discusses the spirituality of colour and the alignment of shapes as well as rediscovering artists that inspired both my Grandad and myself in the hope of creating a piece that honors him, as well as concluding this section of the journey that I have been on.


Structural studiesDarkness Painting, A4 Studies,  Colour study, Primary Colours.


Natural Influences, Dali and Banksy, Stedelijkmuseum, Van Gogh, Kandinsky.


Degree Show Proposal

My proposal has not altered thus far, I am hoping that a simple execution of something beautiful and visually engaging will draw an audience in and allow an open discussion to be formed from the stimulation.

Studies in Red, Yellow and Blue

A far cry from the dark primary colours study that I did a few months ago. I am very excited about these paintings, for me they are both a tonal test but also I marker for the positive shift in my emotional state. I feel that I am now able in my emotional state. I feel that I am now ableto moresophisticatedly tackle my colourful palette and bring together these vibrant paintings back together in more innovative ways. Furthermore, by adding to my knowledge of colour theory and tonal qualities I will be able to push the work forward into a more concise and fluid language.

I would like to do a few more of these paintings, especially as I want to produce a red study that is on the same size paper as the blue and yellow. I might also begin looking into what happens when the two sides are swapped, so possibly having one yellow side and one blue to play with the visual experience of the colours.