My tutor first commented that she was pleased I had followed her artist recommendations. I had researched several artists, who all brought something to my experience and have inspired me to explore further. These included Liz Markus, whose childlike approach was refreshing; Joyce Pensato, who really had a big impact, as I love her expressive way of working, and her darker treatment of lighter themes, and Peter Jones, who documented old toys in a way in which they became like living entities. I have enjoyed the artist research, and look forward to continuing this on into the next part of the course.

She feels that I have a playful approach, which is reflected in my mark making, colour palette, and use of toys as my subject. She also feels that my connection to my son comes through in my work, and this is something that has made me think and want to explore further. Perhaps feature aspects of motherhood and childhood in my work in the future. There is lots I could explore and experiment with.

It is very interesting what my tutor said about identifying the choices we make regarding our inspirations and art, and motherhood plays a major role in my life, and my son is the key relationship I have, as his father died 10 years ago.

I feel that up until now, my art has been illustrative, rather than coming from a place deep inside of me. It is time to explore motive, and start being more expressive.


Seaside Still Life

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This piece was based upon three seaside themed items I had found around my house. An ornamental lighthouse, a woman figurine in a bathing costume, and a seashell tea light holder.

It was pointed out that I needed to pay attention to the perspective of the ellipses on the lighthouse, and looking back, I can see how they are out of proportion. I had attempted cross hatching, which was working well, but it was suggested I avoid drawing outlines for the objects, as this flattens things and undermines the tonal work.

It was mentioned about the scale of the objects, but I drew them as I saw them, and my tutor thinks this adds playfulness, and has the potential to be developed into a painting.


My tutor was pleased with how I had taken the influence of Joyce Pensato and used it as inspiration for my toy sketches. I had drawn my son’s rabbit and explored several media.

She said that my drawings of the rabbit had a feel of manic tension, and I agree. They certainly seem quite dark. The colours are dull, probably as they had blended in with the charcoal. It would be nice to find a way of incorporating brighter colours. Maybe with diluted acrylic inks? I will have to try!


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Five Nights at Freddy’s charcoal and watercolour sketch
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Assignment 1

It was suggested that I was feeling a little tentative with these two pieces, as they were for the final piece. I feel, in retrospect, that this is the case. I did feel pressured to conform to what I perceived to be the criteria of the assignment. My tutor suggested that I had been more careful with these pieces, but had lost some of the expressive energy that came through in my sketchbook work. I really do agree. I felt as though I had to conform to what I believed were the expectations of the course. I had believed that the aim was to use tone and shade and mark making to represent a composition, which in my case was toys. This had inhibited my expression and this was reflected in my work, which was restrained and more conventional.

I had tried to create dark shadows in the Mickey Mouse drawing, but the tutor pointed out that these could have been accentuated further with ink or conte. I will certainly try and explore inks in my work, and have explored acrylic inks in some of my work for part two.

It is interesting that it was mentioned about viewers imagining a story and this is very true. Viewing others artists’ work creates a narrative in our minds. Our imaginations are sparked, hopefully, and this is something I would like to come through in my future work.


I will certainly continue to look at other artists who excite me, and identify aspects of their work I enjoy (and don’t enjoy!) I will think about how I relate to it, and how it makes me feel, and be mindful of this whilst I create my own drawings and paintings.

My tutor said that my strength lies in my expressive mark making, and I agree. She said that although careful observational drawing is important, it is also important to let our own individual voices shine through; to be true to ourselves.

This is something I really need to explore. I feel hindered by convention in my life and art, and just want to be free. I need to find a way to blend the OCA guidelines with my own individual voice. I need to be brave and experimental, and look within to then express outwardly through my art.

I have been given some new suggestions for artists to explore, which I will do. I enjoy the work of contemporary artists, even performance artists. It has been suggested I think about ways of simplifying tones, shapes and colours in some of the future interior work, and explore the art of Matisse, Van Gogh and some more contemporary artists.

It has been suggested that I try working on A1 size paper, as I have been working on A2 and have been feeling a bit limited. I look forward to working at this larger size, and hope it will help me to feel less restricted and more expressive.


I would like to thank my tutor for her ongoing support and encouragement, and also for the detailed and highly constructive feedback on my work. I have found it very valuable, and look forward to utilising the advice as I move forward through the next part of the module.

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