Art 2 Final Portfolio

1. The project that was most successful for me was the "Up-close and Personal" project. I did a caterpillar, and I think the perspective I drew it in really made it work with the theme. I used chalk pastels, and I learned while practicing with them that you really have to stay neat and organized, and you have to shade lightly so that you can add layers as you go along. I also learned that you have to start with the medium color and then start layering with the light and darker colors to add value. I practiced with chalk pastels a lot before I actually started the final drawing. Using them to draw candy and sketching with them in my book really warmed me up for making the final my best project of the semester. At first, I had no idea what I was going to do for the background or what to put the caterpillar on, all I knew was that I wanted to do a close up of a caterpillar crawling. I think if I were to use oil pastels, it would not have turned out as well, because one of my favorite things about it was the soft finish it had, and that's something chalk pastels do well. Overall I am proud of this project and I think learning new techniques with chalk pastels worked out in the end.  
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2. I was definitely the least successful in my last project of the semester, the mixed media. I chose the theme fairytale/fable, so I decided to do a fish swimming in the ocean, and my inspiration was the book "Rainbow Fish", a story from my childhood that I used to love and read all the time. However my project did not turn out quite how I would have liked it. I feel that it did not have enough value, so it didn't look realistic enough. Its very hard to incorporate different light and dark shades when doing mixed media with tissue paper, because all you can do is add different colors of the paper, but its hard to blend it together. I did do different colors of blue in the water, however it was hard to tell, so I decided to make 3D waves out of tissue paper on top of that, which unfortunately made the waves look a little childish. Something else I didn't like about what I did with this project was the lack of layers. Mixed Media is all about adding layer on top of layer of material and color, and although I followed the guidelines of the project and did at least 3 layers, I feel like it was not enough. What I would have done differently if I had the chance to redo this project, is use more watercolor instead of sticking with just tissue paper, and I also would have added a whole layer of different blue tissue papers, instead of just putting a few here and there.

3. I grew so much as an artist from the end of Art 1 to the end of Art 2. I developed so many new techniques and skills with old and new mediums and materials. Compared to last year, my drawing skills have improved greatly, and you can really see that in  my "Scientific" themed project, in which I drew butterflies flying off into the sun. This was one of my most frustrating projects this semester, because it was the first one and I really wanted to do well, but it was surprisingly so hard to make the wings symmetrical. I must have redone each butterfly wing at least 20 times, and I thought about picking a new idea several times. However I am really glad I stuck with it to the end because it became one of my favorite pieces of all time! I like the simplicity of it, and it really shows how much I've grown as an artist throughout high school and this semester. Another project I feel shows my growth was the "Sticky Situation" project, in which I drew sap dripping out of a tree. I learned many new painting techniques, and compared to my painting last year, it has so much more value and ranges of color, making it a lot better. Both of these projects just show how I have evolved and can only get better!

4. One of the most helpful mini projects was the painting one, where we copied one fourth of a famous painting, and then in the end combined with 3 other people, and saw the painting all together. This was helpful because it taught me how to make shades of colors I really never new to be out there, because I had to make look at the painting and try to make them as exact as possible. It also unconsciously taught me how to focus on the details, because although I thought I was just painting the main things, when we put our paintings together, I realized I was painting everything to the last detail, and it made the overall painting look so much better. This project helped me in my success for the sticky situation project. Another helpful mini project was the small animal made out of plaster. It helped me to form a 3D image successfully, and the techniques I used, such as using newspaper and wire to form the base of something, helped me with the final project. for the final, me and my partner used newspaper to support all the weight of the clay. I definitely feel these mini projects ensured my success for the final projects.

5. My favorite medium to work with was definitely the clay. I loved being able to make something truly 3D. It was fun to build something from the ground up. When working with clay, I also used a lot of techniques. One of the biggest ones was scoring, something that can determine whether your project is going to hold up or not! I also learned that you can use knives or tools to make detail in the clay. Working with a partner also made working with clay a lot more fun, because they show you other techniques and you really learn a lot. I have always liked working with clay ever since the clay tile last year, and the project this year made me enjoy it even more.

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