Assignment One: reflection

After deciding how to arrange the objects, I started drawing. As I knew I would be working on this over a period of a few days, I set up the objects on a desk with a lamp shining from the left, as it was more consistent and provided me with a better contrast than simply using overhead light.

I used a range of materials, using graphite sticks and a pencil for some of the intial lines and shading, willow charcoal for some of the larger areas that needed more texture, and charcoal pencils for the majority of detail.

I made some notes while I was completing this:

Why these objects?

  • personal / familiar objects
  • range of textures
  • accessible
  • range of shapes/sizes.

What went well?

  • range of materials
  • good contrast with light/dark
  • tone shown with lines and shading
  • used the space effectively, and filled the paper.

What didn’t go well?

  • paper type – too smooth for charcoal
  • found it difficult detailing different textures – need to practice more drawing techniques
  • not overly happy with the book in the drawing – corrected some of it using a putty eraser, but still think it wasn’t right!

The whole piece was completed on A2 paper, and I will now attempt to look at my work against the assessment criteria in the course handbook.


Demonstration of Technical and Visual Skills

  • I feel I used a good range of materials: Derwent graphite stick (Medium), HB mechanical pencil, charcoal stick, willow charcoal (varying thicknesses), putty eraser.
  • Similarly, I feel I am getting better at mixing techniquest to produce the effects I want. For instance, I used lines and shading to build tone, and to differenciate between textures.
  • My observational skills are something that need work, as I have in the past had a tendancy to draw what should be there, rather than what is there. I was aware of the light, which was a small desk lamp to the left of the objects.
  • I feel that my design and compositional skills need more work, as I found it difficult choosing and setting up objects to draw. I did extend the frame of the corkboard that was sitting behind the objects, more to avoid the composition looking too cluttered!

Quality of Outcome

  • I think I need to think more about the types of paper to use, and experiment with this, as well as the other materials.
  • After finishing the work and spraying it with fixitive, I had an issue removing masking tape from the paper, where it took a small layer of paper off – thankfully not big areas!

Demonstration of Creativity

  • I have enjoyed experimenting with materials and am getting more confident in mark making. I do still feel nervous of ‘messing up’, and find it difficult filling the whole space/page – no matter what size it is! I am very glad that I challenged myself by drawing on a larger sheet of paper than I perhaps would have done.
  • Although I’ve not worked much with materials like charcoal I am trying to develop my own style with lines and tone.


  • I have chosen to use a blog to record my research and progress. I feel that although I have been uploading scans from my sketchbook and research notes, I could do a lot more research into other artists work, and more experimental sketches.

A final thing I noted while packaging my work to send to my tutor, was that I felt very unsure how much to spend on presenting at this stage. I bought a large portfolio to send my work in flat, but improvised a bit with the packing, using flipchart paper and masking tape to seperate work, and a large sheet of cardboard as a mount for my assignment piece. As I wanted to carry on using my sketchbook at this stage, I sent photocopies of all of the pages, but sent the original work from the exercises that I’d completed on larger paper.



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