SN - 2016357

For the Sequential Image module, I am going to explore the experience of being in a forest at night. I will be engaging all of my senses to investigate what it is like to be in this very unique environment. From these initial observational and imaginative drawings, I will uncover a story and mood to feed into my sequence.

In the spirit of Helen Stephens I will make myself ‘uncomfortable’ in the act of drawing and experiment with drawing in different weather and light conditions. It is my intention that my observational drawings will take an imaginative journey, to capture the nocturnal heart of the forest. In my mind, the spirit of the forest is at its most vibrant at night. Nocturnal animals come out of their resting place, and the forest is alive with activity and possibilities.

There will be an animal presence in my sequence and from initial storyboarding. Owls have been a dominant interest, however this does not dictate other animal presences.

I will be exploring nests (human and animal) and the act of hibernation as we dive into the winter months. The natural and spiritual changes of winter is also a key theme, which will be investigated, alongside spring. I am hoping that by thinking about the two seasons in tandem, I will understand each season better and discover how they interconnect.

I will explore the forest in the context of folk art and literature, looking at the particular lens of West Country traditions. In order to research this topic, I will be looking at visual artists who look at folk themes and fables. . I am particularly interested in the work of Paula Rego and her rich way of telling stories in her paintings.. This is a primary source of inspiration. I will also be looking at documentaries and archive materials to aid my research. From a literature perspective, the work of Edward Thomas and Thomas Hardy are also of interest, and in particular their beautiful descriptions of the English countryside. The feeling of nostalgia is something I would like to personally evoke in my work.

In terms of looking at the technical aspects of creating the sequence, I will be exploring Bonnard’s depictions of light and loose style of painting. I would like to borrow from Van Gogh’s exaggerations of colour and Mark Hearld’s way of creating layered collages. I am also interested in Ivon Hitchen’s loose way of defining space, alongside his vibrant colour palettes.

In the initial planning of the project I would like to split my time between the following tasks.

  • Daily creation of sequences for quick imaginative work. Words and images.
  • Observational drawing in the forest, looking in particular the themes and challenges that come out of my sequences.
  • Animal studies in the petting zoo and human studies in weekly life drawing classes.
  • Exploration of dark, looking at how light is conveyed in the sequence. Focusing on how colours can be conveyed.
  • Primary research of artists and documentaries about the project’s theme.
  • Longer studies, exploring different materials that could be used in a final sequence.