Still Life / Nature Morte

Final Piece

For my still life, I thought back to an object that had sentimental value to me that is no longer in my life. Instantly thinking of my old house (ages 1-11), I mentally scanned through how I used to spend my time as a child. I remembered the soft, welcoming beige walls of my pillow fort, constructed by my skilful architect older brother from a large sectional couch in my old basement. This couch became my object of focus, particularly in its fort form, as it was usually organized.

First Sketch – Remembering what the couch looked like

My process began by remembering the couch, then planning the thumbnail sketches. I remembered all the aspects of the couch, the mood it gave off, tiny details and memories, textures, and the space created within the fort.

I used grids in class to create different potential layouts for the composition of my pillow fort, deciding in the end that the 5×5 composition, my last image, was the strongest. Working on a larger scale than I am used to, I used watercolour to create my final piece. Along with the couch itself, I incorporated a blanket drapery, knitted by my late grandmother as another touch of my past and things which I have left behind. I included a plastic, riveted tube which twisted through the walls of my fort, used as a communication tube between my brother and I. I also included a detail more hidden from the viewer: a plastic candy wrapper. My brother and I had a hidden bag of Halloween candy we’d save and hide from our parents, so this secretive, yet present detail was important symbolically to our bond.

As an added touch, here’s a photo of my brother and me with the mentioned couch.

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