Having completed the first term of Level 6, the second term now leads to the field module. Unlike previous modules their Is more a series of goals to achieve than a list of objectives to my understanding. With this being my final year and essentially brief for Artist Designer Maker the focus is more on what it is I want to make and specialise in now and after graduation.
Having had to postpone my Formative assessment for Subject (Level 6) for personal reasons much like dissertation the ideas of what I want to do have been in my mind a lot more than usual but at this point I am focusing on completing any outstanding work in sketchbooks and my blog as well as extra criteria to bring into both my subject mark and Field mark to help me push more into a higher grade of work as since starting Maker I’ve been sitting on the fence of both a 2.2 and 2.1 benchmark with not much of a difference in marks although at this point I don’t actually know yet what my feedback will say but can roughly guess.
During my talk with Zoe yesterday the context of commercial was introduced to define the nature and dominance my work falls into. Commercial meaning how an artist chooses to promote their work can be an artist that creates work that they sell to a company to have in their stores or creating work that has the potential to be exhibited in galleries as well as exhibitions to the public with the chance of sales at any point.
During the tutorial Zoe highlighted to me that the way you see yourself working will best show how to get your work into the commercial artist market but like anything there are positives and there are negatives. Looking at the three categories that on the Maker course we fall into being Craft, Art or Design there is a different approach to each to the commercial that speaks to me in my own understanding. These understandings to the commercial being :-
- Craft (me) :- seeing myself as a craft person I would see myself in a commercial context creating pieces for home use as functional and decorative objects such as plates and coasters to bowls and vases traditionally in glass but with elements of other materials combined. To be commercial craft artists would most likely advertise their work through their website and thanks to the technological era use the social media platform to reach a business and buyer market directly, as well as this there can be craft markets as well as gallery submissions and competitions.
- Design :- Designers in a commercial sense due to the connection of furniture and lighting would hit a higher end commercial market of events that cover furniture and lighting such as the London markets as well as approaching companies that have a growing market in that sector to display work within their stores to directly approach the customer without the artist being there to sell it like a craft artist would on market.
- Artists :- Artists due to the common link of installation pieces and sculpture would in a commercial context in my mind create pieces on commission or pieces that they can sell to build reputation or site specific work that can draw in tourism to the area whether permanent or short. Which can lead to other projects in time or exhibit work that inspires, challenges and reinterprets the minds way of thinking.
looking at those ways of imaging the commercial I would see myself more strongly in the Craft market of commercial marketing but I do value the other ways of making and marketing available to my fellow makers as I wish for my work to meet a large market over time but not have the massive overhang of lack of interest due to the limitations that my work is displayed in. But for the moment I believe my strongest chance is to develop pieces of high quality that can be made with ease but not easy and then as skills develop grow stronger and move into more complex pieces that galleries will more likely undertake and with the amount of time it takes to reach that level there will already be a market notability to my work going into it as a new maker to the block.
Today with Ingrid now abroad visiting and creating relationships and opportunities with universities abroad and the Maker course in Cardiff I had the opportunity to have a quite in-depth tutorial with Zoe. Having had a tutorial with Zoe in second year discussing the medal and lamp project which opened new ways of thinking to me for those projects I was looking forward to how Zoe would react as a complete outsider with no knowledge prior of what I’m doing in my project.
Zoe like everyone else really liked the leaves and the concepts to which I’m working in but opened up areas of thinking and potential problems that can occur with what I am doing. looking at my pieces there is an obvious beauty but heavy fragility ratio. For me there are several outcome ideas I am working towards some of which are purely decorative, others that have detail but function to and others that are just functional.
The problem is that glass is a material that is more than capable of falling into those three categories but Zoe believed that I should continue with the experiments I would like to do whilst in time that I can afford to do them and allow that to fuel what the end result will be. Also I highlighted this desire to have a functional but decorative piece but the idea will need to evolve in order to work or there will be nothing to present in the December deadline on November 5th which is just under three weeks from now. So in order to keep true to what I want to do and have pieces that are suitable to my tutors standards and expectations I will make pieces that are purely decorative, pieces that are decorative but with a function to there creation such as a light and ones that are purely functional with the potential to be a series of set pieces like dining wear and interior design pieces. So that is how I will take on-board the advice given as each tutor has given different opinions but have all said as much experimentation as possible is the key to this project.
Towards the end of October I submitted my dissertation draft for assessment to my tutor Martyn to see how good or bad things are going and the level in regards to a grade average I am at now and can achieve when submitted finally in January. Overall I was quite worried as to what the quality would be like for the piece as there was a lot of panic and worry on my part to understand how to describe and demonstrate my understanding in practice of my idea of What is the phenomenology of glass?
I was happy to discover that things are much better than I thought and there aren’t really any major concerns more simple mistakes that happen to everyone and most likely have in some shape or form in their own dissertations. Discussing with Martyn he was pleased with what was handed in and understood why what was submitted was submitted the way it was. Some areas that I brought up and afterwards to Ingrid during a Maker tutorial were the word count limit and trying to keep to the limits of every chapter given. Also with making an artefact there is another worry about how the dissertation can verbally link and correspond to an artefact which is something that I will be marked on.
Speaking to Martyn to make up for the word count and help the flow of the dissertation Martyn suggested starting each separate part of the dissertation structure with a what why and how approach. In context this means
- Why – Why am I saying this
- What – What is going to be said in this chapter
- How – How this will help the dissertations narrative
This approach will help with the word count and flow in practice of the dissertation. Another area was the conversation style were sometimes it is in first person but it needs to be in third person when in an academic context like this. When addressing an individual I need to use there surname rather than their full title and remember to include the details of quotes after the quote within the dissertation paragraph itself has been used.
From my presentation to a small group of fellow makers last week there was confusion but also understanding about what I was intending to present in December and hoping to achieve in May for the final year exhibition. Watching other Makers presentations and looking through my own I was drawn more to functional but as well as that decorative pieces which is a difficult balance as functional doesn’t really require pattern but pattern and detail makes objects more interesting rather than the bland which is good don’t get me wrong but if something catches your eye and appeals to the senses does that override our way of thinking over the norm objects.
With one of my close friends on Maker this comes into effect as we couldn’t be more different in what we like. My friend likes minimal outcomes that are simple but desirable usually made in metal or wood, whereas I use glass, wood, 3D print, textiles as examples and make objects that use patterns and details that don’t come across in their work which isn’t a bad thing it just compliments what we like about our work and each others.
This week coming I want to be able to develop further my experimental prototypes and create more depth to the prototypes and begin to correlate my sketchbook to these ideas as well as the links to the artists I am using as influences and additions to the 20 in the Pecha Kucha.
Next Tuesday will be the formative hand in for the Dissertation/Constellation Module which I am to hand in all that I have done no matter what format that is to be valued see what works, see what doesn’t and so on. Speaking to Martyn even last year to be precise my idea and the whole point of this Dissertation has been difficult to piece together and if this is how I feel who knows what anyone else is going through. As I collect and read through more material I believe the idea is becoming clearer and is more focused now on how a broad philosophical theory which Phenomenology is has such a big impact on what I do and think as a Maker. So for the dissertation I selected the 6,000 words and artefact option which may be seen as the easier option but making hasn’t been easy for me and the fact that the object must link to the dissertation means that there is an additional two challenges to the one of the dissertation itself. But I remain confident and will try my best with this challenge and see what my feedback says and suggest whether it is better to do the full 8,000 words to 10,000 words or concentrate on the artefact and 6,000 words option. To simplify and ensure I have the correct layout for the formative as well as the official final document I came up with a rough layout plan and during tutorials highlighted what was necessary and what wasnt or was but needed to be altered to fit in with the rest. And this is the final plan layout of 4,000 words with the remaining 2,000 and the artefact to be discussed afterwards :-
- What is Phenomenology and phenomenology of glass
- Why is this important and relevant to my studies and ethos and how does this help me understand the material of glass.
- How an object is phenomenological and can be made that way
This would cover the opening 500 words of the dissertation followed by the first bulk part of around 2,000 words
- Introducing Phenomenology
- The theory and methods of Edmund Husserl
- The Theory and methods of Maurice Merleau Ponty
- How are objects phenomenological
Following that with the bulk of the research in place I would move onto:-
- The phenomenology of glass
- Don Ihde
Which would leave me with the remaining word count to focus on the object and the findings overall combined with the theoretical discoveries and arguments of Maurice Merleau Ponty and Edward Husrel
One concept that has come up throughout my work since the beginning of Maker and during my work for the final year is this battle between the simple and pattern. Many of my friends balance the boat on this category with the idea less is more and why complicate a design with pattern when the beauty of the natural material shines through.
As much as I love pattern I understand the desires of both cases and this is something im interested in exploring and even approaching artists about. I believe that as a maker there is a great deal of interpretation and face value to what we individually make but the idea of what the viewer sees in comparison to what you see and what you want them to see and think remains a blurred vision. For my work throughout the year im aiming to challenge this idea by making simplified and more complexed pieces and ask individuals their interpretation of them when viewed and their interpretation when I present them in some shape or form what my pieces mean to me.
Also this seems to be flowing into the idea that my dissertation is about. For my dissertation I have been looking into the idea of phenomenology and the broad relationship we have to objects which is of interest to me as ive always wondered why my work is viewed in one way when I see it in another, And if there is a reason for this more in the sense of the experience of the object and its presentation on Maker. I believe that this is something that will benefit me on Maker and also in future experiences as making work that the general public can see and interact with is something id like to potentially do in the future.