When I began this semester my first thought of Visual Culture when it came to mind is, things we look at and how they effect our society. To a certain extent I still think about it the same, because technically that would be an accurate definition, but what’s different is I have a much deeper understanding of it all. Visual Culture is a topic of incredibly vast information. Within studio I learned a good amount about artists through the ones Bryan would post as well as the videos he would show us in class, some I liked and some I disagreed with. In seminar we looked at the subject from many different angles and went into extensive research on our topics to narrow it down. Visual Culture is quite a beautiful part of our society as humans, it is deeply attached to me as a visual artist and learning more about my ideas because of it this semester was a blast.
What I learned:
For something new that I learned I’d say this class helped most with me understanding what it means to research a topic, as well as seminar. For preparation methods I’m glad to now have the knowledge of taxonomies as a tool as well as diptychs. For this large scale illustration I had to study 12 different religions and looks into at least 50+ deities to understand who I should/shouldn’t include in the illustration. I’ve learned that taxonomies are perfect trigger new ideas to wriggle their way out of the brain into your work whether conscious of it or not. As for diptychs, they force your brain to think in new ways to match the pieces to each other in obvious ways or more conceptually obscure ways. During my critique Alex suggested I make a triptych out of this piece to show how the many different gods would deal with the souls of the dead.
I am very happy with this piece, it was a big project and it took a lot of time and patience. The good parts about it were I was really able to experiment with composition, layout, and flex my pattern making skills. I enjoyed designing each character and keeping it accurate to the original religious imagery as well as deciding on what humor would be appropriate for them depending on their lore as a god/goddess. The cons to this piece are their is a lot of moving parts, a lot going on, which if fun to look at but difficult to decide how it should look. Organization wise this piece was a nightmare, it took me forever just to deicide where everything would go. An artist can easily ink or put something in the wrong area on the piece and completely ruin the weight of the piece and throw it off balance. It is scarily possible for someone to accidentally make a piece look awkward just because it was placed in the wrong way, it can ruin a whole piece. Next time if I were to do something differently it would be to give myself more time and not bite off more than I can chew. This piece was almost too much to handle, and I would like to keep working on it. In conclusion, this is the best and most visually complex piece I’ve made all year. Seeing it to a finished point was unbelievably satisfying. I enjoyed the making process but sadly the enjoyment was overshadowed by the stress. But once finished I was so, so happy. I will finish this piece and make a projection for it, you have my word.