PART THREE

REFLECTIVE JOURNAL

REFLECTION 8.31 / FINAL EVALUATION WRITING

There are only two days left until the project finish, I still have a lot of work to catch up. For this final weekend, I have to do a lot of work in order to finish off this project. Today, I finished the writing of the finial evaluation and from the reviewing back, I do see a lot of areas that I am lack of. 

For this final week, I worked onto some experiments that I was not able to achieve but planed earlier. This was a positive thing for me as an art and design student that it helped me developing the ability of taking a limited project further. I think there are several new things I learnt from this project:

  • Be brave to make changes of plans at any time
  • It is never too late to get rid of current idea and develop a new one
  • Response to situations immediately even if I think I could catch up things
  • Always review back, especially in the middle of a project because when I work onto practical works, I always forget about time table
  • When there are brand new things to try out during the project, do myself a limited time plan and when the time is over, the experiment is over
  • Do not struggle onto one thing too far, do something else first and come back to it

There is also another old problem of myself, the time management, I constantly suffer this problem for almost every project I did. This time, everything went well till the half way through, and afterwords, everything comes up together. Time planning is playing a really important role, when my rhythm of working changed, I can never change it back to normal. Luckily, several serious tutorials gave me the reminding of where I was at that time. Although I had a late response, I still changed my plan afterwords and there was no irresistible consequences for this project. 

Even though, I still think my time management did improved compare to the start of the course and I am proud of myself. I will continuing working on this problem in my future learning and I believe I will become more and more confident on it. 

Weekend Plan:

  • Finish off the analyses and annotations of the researches on Workflow
  • Add the images of any workshop forms to the reflection page on Workflow
  • Print out physical copies required for the assessment
  • Do more drawings on the sketchbook and filling in the gaps of pages
  • Add the latest experiments to the sketchbook
  • Do another final design as if the project is going to continue

FINAL EXHIBITION POSTER

REFLECTION 8.22 / HAT WORKSHOP & SCAMPER

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From the contextual study workshop today, I reviewed my project so far and I thought a lot of things that I did not think about during the development of the project. I became really depressed about myself that I should think about those things earlier in the project but then I think it is still not too late to make changes. It is true that I need to have an open mind about the learning process. I think what I am doing right now is playing everything safe. There is no fault of doing this but I think I could do better when I actually making some decisions. 

I think for this project, almost everything is not going on so well that it is almost a huge mass for what I spent so much time on. It is very contradictory that I am really regret about what I did but also satisfy about them. I spent so much time in making the body casting sculpture that I think it is not necessary and not effective in this project but at the same time, I think it is worth to try this out as I have never tried before and I got into such kind of 3D and fine art things that is about to be the boundary to my discipline

I got very depressed at the day that I decide not to try out the sound, video and smell experiment. After today's workshop, I think I will still do them even I may not going to be able to use them, I will not lose anything by trying things out really quickly.

Action Plan:

  • Experiment with videos and audios
  • Finishing off the final outcome with another 8 hours and no more
  • Finishing off the annotations for my research file

REFLECTION 8.20 / FINAL DUVET MAKING

Today, after the group tutorial, I realized that my original plan will not be able to achieve based on my current progression and after discussion, I decided to change my final design and focus on the leg sculpture and the duvet installation. I was really depressed by making this decision because I really wanted to try to make textiles that relate to smell and audio

I think the biggest cause for ending in this situation is that in the beginning of the project, I was too excited and too ambition. The initial idea of making an outcome that refer to each sense of human is not so smart especially when I have no experience of doing things in large scale like that and using techniques I have never used before. On the other hand, I think I did not experiment enough to support my final making so the time taking for each step is far more than what I expected.

I started to make the duvet installation outcome in the stitching workshop. Based on the time left, I have to work in the workshop producing my physical final piece at the day time and during the evenings, I need to work into my sketchbooks and workflows.未标题-1.jpg.25

The time taking of sewing the pillow covers is very long and I have to think another way to sew in order to finish the final outcome on time. 

Action Plan:

  • (1 Hr) Cut out the different shapes of different fabrics 
  • (0.5 Hr) Pin the related fabrics together
  • (1 Hr) Sew the pillow covers in three sides
  • (3 Hr) Close all the pillow covers with the pillows in
  • (5 Hr) Hand sew the pillows together

REFLECTION 8.16 / PROGRESS TUTORIAL

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From this tutorial, I understood that my current working stage is too limited. I only worked into the leg sculpture enough, for my other ideas, I did not work in experiment enough. It is obvious that most of my ideas were still in my mind and not presented through my work, which is not useful at all. People will not understand what I am trying to tell without visuals.

My next step will be catching up works for other areas and make enough experiments and developments, just like how I did with the leg sculpture idea. Only when I have enough work, I will be able to combine ideas and refine them. Otherwise, my project will be unsubstantial and week

REFLECTION 8.10 / BODY CASTING

Today, I had the experience of doing real life body casting. Because it is an one day project, my model has to do his work as well. Therefore, I discussed with my model that he would do some machine sewings in the morning section and in the afternoon, he could do some hand sewings while he is being my model. 

I prepared the materials I need to use for body casting, modroc cut in different sizes and shapes, shaved legs, vaseline, clean film and a bow of water. While I was shaving my model's legs, I collected all the removed hair from him for my later experiment with hair.

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A lot of unexpected problems happened during the actual casting process. For example, the model felt extremely uncomfortable and really strong pains after keeping the position for a while. Therefore, after discussion, we decided to change the original plan and divided the whole process into two sections so the model had some breaks.未标题-1.jpg.23

From the experience today, I learnt about the importance of having the ability to change the plan with quick reaction and the ability of solving accidents. Planning everything in advance is a very key thing to do because it saves a lot of time in real making, but there is always a percentage of things happen beyond expectation.

INDESIGN POSTER

REFLECTION 8.8 / MATERIAL WORKSHOP

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Priorities: structured, flat surface finishing, stable

Considered: latex, calico and wadding, plaster, clay, cement

Selected: plaster

Reasons of rejecting other material:

  • Latex can not be shaped into human body shape easily, it needs to have something to support with
  • Calico and wadding can not create a stable outcome that can represent the character of 'father's legs'
  • Clay in large scale will craze and it is very fragile
  • Cement will be too heavy

Sustainable:

  • Add chicken wire in the middle to save material and lighter the weight of the sculpture
  • Add wood to support the structure to be more stable and avoid the sculpture to break

Technical Issues: The shape of the sculpture will be really important in order to make it stable. In addition, I will need to make a shaped container to fill the plaster in. 

REFLECTION 8.6 / FIRST MAKING ACTION

I went to the sewing workshop today to do some fast textile experiments using simple materials, black threads, plastic sheets and latex fabrics. 

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From yesterday's research about male's body hair, I noticed that different people have different shapes, thickness, color and density of hair. I used four different sewing techniques and all four of them create different visual effect

All of them are not successful and I felt really depressed about this. The first two are not stable and easy to break because there is no knotting anywhere. The other two are too time consuming that each one took about 20 minutes to make and it will be impossible to create a large piece using the same technique. 

Action Plan:

  • Try other methods of making body hair textile
  • Research more about the current methods
  • Try out other experiment ideas first and then come back 

REFLECTION 8.3 / BODY HAIR RESEARCH

From the photos I took yesterday, I wanted to look at the body hairs of male and therefore I collected 3 samples of body hair form 3 males with different color of skin and compare their body hairs. 

未标题-1A.jpgI wanted to do some experiments about recreating hairs on the skin using materials like yarns, threads, latex, plaster or resin. At the same time, I found that the different composition of the legs created interesting forms, I wanted to designing a sculptural installation that is made by male leg forms and audiences could sit on to. I want to achieve this idea by using body casting technique.

I did not prepare those materials today and I decided to buy materials during the weekend and next week, I will be focusing on working in workshops.

During the weekend, I will be:

  • Researching about body casting
  • Preparing materials that I want to experiment with, eg: latex, resin

REFLECTION 8.1 / CONTEXTUAL WORKSHOP

During the morning contextual workshop, I filled in the given form about thinking the project theme deeper. Although I have finished my proposal already, but the section suggested me some different points to look at for the project. For example, I decided to research more about the social effect and political problems around young people being stressed in the society. It also gives me some specific elements to look at, like unpaid internshipsunstable ranted apartment and the expensive cost of living.

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I also did a visual diagram using the four main elements from the project. 

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The diagram is very simple but it helped me to organize my thinking. The shadow area needs to be my content for the project. I need to use textile design elements creating a space presenting the sense of security relating with the five human senses

REFLECTION 7.31 / INTERVIEW

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Today, I did an interview with my peers. I choose them because they are at the same age group like me and they are just started to feel pressures from life. I collected the answers and I am surprised by those answers that there are a lot of really detailed descriptions and a lot of elements other than an object or a place. I think this interview was really successful and I got a lot of inspirations from the answers. 

Action Plan: 

  • Research about the answer 'Sitting on father's thigh' by taking photos of males legs
  • Play with basketballs both indoor and outdoor and see the differences
  • Combine elements of bedding uses, duvet, pillow, bed sheet etc
  • Record the different sounds that a mop could make

REFLECTION 7.27 / PROPOSAL REWRITING

Today, because I realized that my proposal is too broad and not specific enough, tutor helped me to rearrange my concept and extended my project theme to further details. I learnt that I need to list out the points I wanted to present first and then write about them into words as I had the problem that when I write, it is very easy for me to go toward other directions.标题-1.jpg.2

As my current proposal is not very organized, I will rewrite based on the context plan.

In addition, this weekend, I will go so several different galleries and exhibitions to visit and research as the previous tour gives me a lot of inspiration, I wanted to get inspired by other artists and forms of art and design as well.

REFLECTION 7.25 / JOAN JONAS EXIHIBITION & CSM LIBRARY

I went to the Tate Modern Museum this morning for the Joan Jonas exhibition. I noticed that she uses sound, visual and emotion in her works mainly and I think that her works communicate with audiences in multiple ways that is almost like bringing the viewers to another world, which is different from the world that we live in.

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I have been thinking to work with videos and sounds after the exhibition. I think videos and sounds could be see as different forms of textiles as well.

I went to the CSM library in the afternoon and there was one book that inspired me so much called 'Memory' written by David Samuel. There was one chapter called 'The six senses' and the five human senses and the sixth sense were discusses. I thought about the reasons of people having the feeling of secure. 'Is that the external environment affecting the feeling of people?' I always believe that the external condition is taking the most parts but after reading the chapter, I started to think about the sixth sense as well. Sometimes, I do get into some emotions with no reason and I suppose people will feel insecure with no reason as well.

I will reorganize my thinking direction and add the sixth sense into my consideration as well. 

REFLECTION 7.23 / THREE IDEAS

From the weekend, I thought about three initial ideas that is potentially to be developed into a theme:

  • The sense of security
  • The life of a transgender
  • Teenager contraception and abortion

Personally, I do not have a preferred theme and during tutorial, I started to think about the practicability

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The transgender theme is quite difficult to do primary research as I do not know anyone who is transgender and I am not a transgender. Therefore, I realized that doing a project from a third person angle will not be so deep. I decided to give up this idea. But between the other two, I think I will do further researches to decide. 

By relating the other two themes with my discipline, textile design, it is more difficult to visualize the senses because the senses of people are invisible and textile design is a more physical area. The contraception and abortion will be easier because there are lots of physical things I could look up, the pills or the surgical tools. I wanted to challenging myself during this project, I wanted to work with textile areas that I have never tried before, therefore, I am not able to decide my theme at this stage yet. 

FINAL EVALUATION

REFLECTION 8.20 / DRAFTS OF POSTER TEXT

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For the poster text, I did all those different versions and developed all the way through. From the initial version, I did talk about what I did but more about the concept. It is more important to letting the audiences know what did I do and why did I do them

As there is a limitation of the word count, I have to delete the unnecessary words and summarize my most important informations. I was not pleasant about the version before my final version at all because I think the information I wanted to say was deleted by the tutor so I went to other tutors to get some other suggestions. I talked to the other two tutors about my reasons of choosing the other version and my disappointments about having too much descriptions. They do agreed with my thinking and we eventually changed the text to an earlier version

REFLECTIN 8.29 / PHOTOSHOOT & POSTER TEXT WRITING

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Today, my final outcome was shot by a professional photographer. I selected two photos from this photoshoot and one of my own photography for my final presenting. I was planning to use a model to sit onto the piece but I was not able to achieve that because the photoshoot time was limited

In addition, as the previous indesign poster was not successful for the whole group, another version is required. I wrote about the 60 words description today and I think I need to do several versions to turn it into a precise description

REFLECTION 8.21 / PROGRESS TUTORIAL & SELF ASSESSMENT

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From the tutorial today, I got a warning from the tutor and I do realize why is this. I think I do deserve this result with my current achievements. However, I do want to change the situation and this means that from now to the 3rd of September, I have to work extremely hard. My time plan for the last two weeks was horrible that I did not do enough work. This tutorial really waked me up, I became really stressful for the rest of the day. 

Previously, I did realize that the sculpture making is taking too much of my time and I did not do enough work in other areas but I did not response to the changes of plan seasonably. Even at this stage, I still feel scared to make big changes and I need to get rid of this emotion soon. GGG.jpg.1

I also did a self assessment today. From the form, I realized that my current situation is really bad. I am only able to get a pass at this stage, which is quite depressing. From all 12 columns, I got 5 passes, I really need to work on my sketchbook development and workflow pages from now on, otherwise, I may fail the course. 

In conclusion, I have to stop playing safe and actually finish things off.

REFLECTION 8.17 / LEG SCULPTURE MAKING

 I used plaster to fill in the modroc mould I made last week. Every step of this model making is taking way longer than what I expected. It is not a good thing because all my plans were distracted by this. I am worried that I may not have enough time to try out other experiments I planed to do. 

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Although other things become difficult to achieve, the good news is that the sculpture is 80% done today. I took the mould out from the sculpture and the most of the piece came out well. I only need to fill up some details and than I will be able to finish it off. 

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The sculpture is still really heavy, even though I used wood and chicken wire in the middle layer to save some plaster and to avoid the sculpture getting too heavy. It is not a big problem but this causes problems of me carrying it. 

REFLECTION 8.15 / ASSESSMENT FORM & TEXT ANALYSIS

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The assessment criteria gives me a better over view of the requirements for the project. By filling in the form, I found that there are a lot of areas I need to either catch up or work into. I am currently behind in Workflow research analyses and sketchbook drawings

A textual Analysis workshop happened in the afternoon. I printed out my selected piece of text and discussed with my group about it. 

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It is a piece of text I photographed from one of the books I read in CSM library, a book of anthropology and psychology. This selected piece talked about the relationship between the external surroundings and the human senses and my project was all about the environment and the sense of security.

Through the discussion, I talked about confusion of the sixth sense and my interest in visualizing the senses. Other group members answered my questions and agreed with my thinking direction

REFLECTION 8.9 / EVIL CINEMA

Evil cinema happened in the morning section. The situation of some people write too much description in the daily reflection made me realize that it happened on me as well. In addition, my research file is not up to date as well. I have to catch it up as soon as possible. 

Also today, another one-day project was indicated at the end of the day. The individual brief for tomorrow is given and as the workshop will be open, we will use the day tomorrow to produce an finished outcome. In my plan, I was going to do the body casting whole day tomorrow but I think I need to change my plan and do something else or I have to adjust the time arrangement of the whole casting process and minimize the model's time taking.

The situation bothered me a lot as I understand if I am not able to do this experiment today, I may not be able to do it in this project at all because I will not have enough time for trying this out and see if it works

REFLECTION 8.7 / MAKE IT IN A DAY

From the start of the day, I went to the casting workshop and discussed with the technicians about the details of body casting that I want to try. I researched online during the weekend and I found that there are different processes of doing casting using different materials. I was not certain about which one of those methods is the most suitable in my case. During the discussion, the technician explained me about all those different casting techniques and suggested me to use plaster and modroc to make the casting case. Before the discussion, I wanted to use another material called silicone rubber because it gives a really detailed replication, but than I realized that silicone rubber is a really expensive material and it might cost me over £100 to make the size of model I wanted. Therefore, I decided to use modroc and plaster to do a trial model first and than make decision. 

I also brought some old pillows from the second chance shop to experiment with during the afternoon section. I could use wadding to make the filling by myself and I could have different sizes and shapes in a more various ways. I think it is to time consuming at the experiment stage so I just wanted to use some existed pillows to experiment with first. 

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The experiment is not finished but the effect is what I wanted to achieve. I think I will use another different fabric for my final piece and I will use more pillows to produce a larger piece. 

Action Plan:

  • Buy more pillow filling
  • Buy the actual fabrics
  • Enlarge the piece
  • Redo the organization

UNIT 7 PROPOSAL FINAL DRAFT

REFLECTION 8.2 / FATHER'S THIGH

Today, I submitted the final version of the project proposal and started to work into the sketchbook about ideas from my first interview. I found that there are several answers about sitting at somewhere with some specific conditions like 'father's thigh', 'safety belts' and 'in airplane'. I started to research with the male legs today because I do not have access to airplane and do not have a safety belt that I could play with.

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I took some primary photos about different male thighs in different positions. I noticed some common elements of having more flourish hair in comparison with females and the differences are the skin colors and the thickness of the legs. Some of the positions are giving unstable visual effects while other positions seems to be very strong. When the legs are extended (Standing straight), it seems to be easy to knocked out and when the legs are more folded, it seems to be able to take some weight on. 

I am interested in remaining the human body figure because the specific thing is it to be 'Father'. Therefore, I am thinking of making a sculpture

REFLECTION 7.30 / GALLERY VISITS & SKETCHBOOK WORK

During the weekend, I went to several galleries to see some more exhibitions. From the visit to Tate Modern last week, I was really inspired and I wanted to get more ideas from other visits. I think it was really worthy to spent the last two days with different kinds of artworks and it helped me to write my project proposal as well.

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2.jpg.2Today is the project proposal deadline and also a proper start of the project to me as well. By now, I did not do any physical thing for the project yet and therefore, I worked into the sketchbook today. It is really bad to have a lot of ideas and plans of things to do but non of them is visually presented. I need to really work them out and see if my ideas work because thinking and doing are two separate parts, not everything will come up well just like how we think. 

Action Plan:

  • Do at least two experiments this week
  • Catching up the sketchbook works
  • Organize the research file, add in the exhibition visits

REFLECTION 7.26 / PROPOSAL WRITING

During the developments of the previous projects, I understood more about textile design should not be limited as physical 2D surfaces and textures. Therefore, I want to explore more about textile in different forms that people may get confused about. 

From the researches I have done, I became more confident about the theme and my ambition of exploring textile design more. 'Can a piece of video become a textile work?', 'What about try out 3D or 4D medias?' I think at this point, I became really interested by this project although all those thoughts are still in my imaginations. I hope I could do this project in the way I have never tried before. 

As I have started to write my proposal today, I think I became more and more clear about my theme now. The tour of library and Tate Modern was so inspiring to me. I need to tidy up my mind because there are too much ideas going in my mind and I think I need to be more selective. 

Some ideas at this stage:

  • Textile piece presented by performance art
  • Relating textile with human behaviors (the sound that textile pieces make)
  • The understanding of the relationship between environment conditions and human psychological reactions (5 senses, the 6th sense)
  • Textile pieces in abnormal scales (extremely big or small)

REFLCTION 7.24 / THEME DECIDED

I decided my project theme, the sense of security, and the title of this project will be 'Soul Asylum'. I made this decision because I want to make something that can save people from the real world stresses and have a rest. It is like a shelter for invisible danger, the danger of mental illness. 

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I did another mind map and added some details about my thinking into the map. There are several important points I want to look at or present through the project:

  • Textile in different forms - I am going to work with videos, audios, perfumes, 3D sculptures or installations
  • The five senses - Visualize invisible things
  • Start with an interview asking people what make them feel secure

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This is my moodboard at this stage, there are some of my primary images and some artists' works as well. I am mainly thinking about the duvet element now because the idea of the theme came from  me taking the duvet out on the street. It was an accident but it made me think about the idea security. Personally, I feel it is very dangerous to walk on the street during nights. On that day, however, I did not feel so because I was wearing the thick, soft duvet on me. I always feel secure when I hide in the duvet in the bed

As there is my personal experience in this project, I feel more confident to develop it. 

REFLECTION 7.20 / IDEA GENERATION

Today, the last project for foundation plus has been introduced and the special thing is that it is a long project that lasts for 6 weeks. For this project, there is not given brief and I am going to write it by myself. I feel really stressed about this because I am use to develop projects from a limited concept toward specific directions. I feel really difficult to find something out from nowhere. 

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Therefore, to start thinking the themes, tutors gave out some thinking directions for us to come up with some ideas. I wrote some poster notes under each direction. I have never thinking things in this way before, I think it is a really easy way to come up with some quick ideas. 

Under the 'Experiences' title, I wrote 'Breaking up with a boy'. This is something that I am currently experiencing and found memorable. In order to extend this further, I asked several questions to my self:

  • What differences are their between being single and being in a relationship?
  • From the consequences that breaking up brought up, what are the good things and what are the bad things?
  • How did my emotions and feelings change by the time change?
  • What things specifically influenced me the most?

By answering those questions, I found that each question could be develop into a concept. The next step will be filling in the details and researching about the concept to get further inspirations.