Reflective analysis of work from Part 3

The intention of this post is to hone my own self-analysis to make my reflections more purposeful and more useful in terms of practice development.

dancemono12 ex3-311

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I will review the following four monotypes and small painting from my artist research in Part 3.

Image 1

Palette: No great thought went into this other than choosing a harmonious group of colours that might reflect a positive mood. *obvious area for improvement!

Mark-making: The fluid brush marks within the scarf area work well, however, there isn’t a lot of variation between areas. I could have pushed texture and quality of mark making much further. I could also have pushed the density of the colour much more (although this is something I would have found hard with printmaking inks)

Layering: Minimal layering – something I find challenging to do with printmaking. If I print again I need to experiment with printing more layers and playing with the overlay of colours

Composition: Bold, positive, strong. Good use of light in the piece. Too figurative, not abstract enough.

Quality of Mood: Light and positive but the black area in the mouth challenges that.

Other: The drawn quality of the body is more exciting to me and holds more potential than the face.


Image 2

Palette: I chose the colours purposefully as I felt they were akin to uplifting, strong energy. They have however become murky particularly on the cheek and around the eye. There isn’t enough light left within the piece. The black for the eyes is too heavy. Adds a foreboding quality.

Mark-making: Nice and fluid, particularly around the hair, however, it is all too similar – not enough experimentation with variation, with style of marks etc. the removeal of the ink using cotton buds on the chin/lip area has worked well and has produced an interesting effect.

Layering: None present – again a challenge for printmaking but one I can take forward to painting.

Composition: Another bold close-up. Slight distortion to proportions which was intentional. Less figurative, more exciting.

Quality of Mood: Slightly odd – the colours are ‘up’ but the darkness to the eyes is challenging. The two don’t flow together, they are more at odds.

Other: Overall the feeling is that the image is ‘mucky’ because of the murkier areas of ink.  It could work better with more vigilance around keeping colours ‘cleaner’ – something I can apply to my oil painting.


Image 3

Palette: Only two colours used – makes for a ‘simplistic’ feel which was unintentional.  Requires me to be more rigorous with my questioning around colour and intent.

Mark-making: Exciting brush marks around the hair and when zest-it has been used to add an unpredictable quality. The very thin colour works but there isn’t enough variation, which is something that I keep seeing in my work.

Layering: This image is very flat, not only because of the lack of colour variation but also because of the lack of layers.

Composition: Works well – the figure is nicely challenging – interesting negative space vs positive space and colour.

Quality of Mood: Too dark with the bleeding ink around the mouth – the eye being simply a grey smudge also adds an eerie quality.  The absence of ink on most of the face does work really well – remembering where not to work to balance out the tones/light/mark making

Other: Think further on how to create this kind of interesting, bold figure work without it being dark.


Image 4

Palette: The culmination of many print experiments so this colour scheme was carefully considered

Mark-making: Lots of flow and movement. If I was painting this image I would have created more flat areas – for example, the orange behind would benefit from having no brush marks in it.

Layering: Again, not much going on but there is some in the scarf/top area which works well.

Composition: Well considered – sums up the energy that I was aiming for.

Quality of Mood: Bright, joyous, happy – exactly what I had hoped for.

Other: Remember that I built up my understanding of my subject matter over time by producing many mono prints before I produced the successful series.  I now realise it is almost impossible to produce what looks like a simple pared-down piece of work without a large amount of research and practice/investigation done as a precursor.


Image 5

Palette: Reflecting on this it looks rather clumsy now that I have had space from it. The translusence doesn’t work in some areas – it looks like a sketch in paint. Further contemplation of colour choice and style of paint application (eg, thick, thin etc) would have taken this on more. For example, I could have created enamel like surfaces with humbrol – need to remember to question type of paint choice as well as palette.

Mark-making: Really pleased with this. It is varied and creates interest. The fluid under-layer has provided a nice contrast to the bolder over-layers. Variation of flat colour, line, graphic style and painterly brush strokes.

Layering: Starting to evidence this – can still do much more. Need to contemplate purpose of the layers and how they will hold together.

Composition: The figure is central which needs thought – this image started with a thin layer of wash depicting a figure but there wasn’t enough thought relating to placement etc.

Quality of Mood: fun, bright, contemporary. Starting to head in the direction I would like to go.

Other: Try out using a basic wash painting layer as the substance to work on top of – using it as the structure to then produce more fluid work.



Research palette’s of other artists and experiment using their colours. How does that work for me? What colour would I add/remove to make it mine? Really need to further my knowledge of further with experiential research.

Think about tonal qualities and also negative/positive space. Where can I leave the white of the page/canvas? What can I leave out?

Mark-making – need to experiment with more variety – remember to use different brushes, to think further about what the mark is creating within the work and then choose tools appropriately

layering – produce work over time, adding slowly and on different days to build up a history and structure

composition – continue to question how this can affect what I am aiming to communicate with the work.

quality of mood – engage in further self-questioning about what kind of artist I want to be, what ideas I want to communicate and how I might go about doing this.



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