Initial response to Assignment 4 feedback (full reflection to follow once I have acted on pointers)  

Overall I thought my feedback for assignment 4 was fairly positive. My tutor’s summary of my work noted that I am starting to organise and edit my work effectively. Through analysing and visual problem solving my tutor mentions that I have improved the quality of my work even when it was a struggle for me to do so. My time management is improving and this is reflected in my self-motivation. I have been conducting a broad range of research including interviewing artists via email. I need to improve and consistently Harvard reference which was something that was also picked up from assignment 3.

Feedback on assignment:

One point that is constantly repeated about a lot of my drawings is that I need to make a space for ‘quieter areas’ of the page, to allow the drawing to breathe rather than trying to bundle all my ideas and thoughts. I think this will come as I learn to develop my understanding of critically reflecting on my work and deciding what works and what doesn’t.

Again I need to be completing some more observational drawing particularly before I start planning my final drawing for the assignment.

Relating this to the feedback I have been given, I need to look more closely at the foreshortening of the reclining figure. I was pleased I chose this pose and it was mentioned by my tutor that I chose a challenging post but perhaps if I had spent more time completing observing my selection of drawings, would have aided my visual understanding in mastering the foreshortening correctly.

‘The self portrait is the weakest’ is what my tutor said and I completely agree.

The self-portrait is the weakest drawing of the three for several reasons;  the head appears too squashed into the bottom right corner,  the tonal values around the head are too dense and dark, the highlights on the chin, cheek and brow don’t really help to convey a sense of the form of the face; skull or flesh.   What is the intention behind the faces on the left-hand side, what kind of a visual narrative or dialogue were you trying to create?  

The self-portrait  (unlike the other two) feels over-crowded by visual elements and the use of the intense blue.  How could you approach this differently?  What can you learn from the other two drawings, that could improve on this drawing? I need to act on these questions and I plan to do so by drawing.

In the right-hand side (reclining fig) your use of tonal values is more varied through a range of mark-making qualities in charcoal, ink and eraser marks.  The left-hand side becomes too dark in the leg and edge of sofa(?).    I suspect the darkening tone of the legs is where you really struggled to convey the foreshortening.  Here drawing from life would help and also re-looking at the photographic reference.  Look at and analyse the angle from which the upper leg, then lower leg pivot from the hips.  You can also use the negative space (sofa and upper background) to help you to see and correct the foreshortening.  Review and do some small ‘prep’ drawings from life and the photo reference.  Post these drawings and your response to your blog.

In the reclining figure you decided to leave your finger prints in the drawing, which provide a sense of its making and you being physically involved in the process. They refer back to the gestural qualities you have been researching and exploring.  There is a sense of weight and gravity to the figure, positioned (weighted) at the bottom third of the page.  

If I’m honest I didn’t do much planning in mapping out my visual thoughts and ideas for this particular drawing. I knew what I wanted to include but I wasn’t sure how I would portray that idea on paper. Planning and drawing and re-drawing would have helped me with this.

I need to get into the habit of using either my journal or my blog and not repeat myself in either. I feel a bit concerned that when it comes to assessment it will not be clear where to find my reflection and written ideas so I need to consider making this more organised for assessment. Another part that I believe to be repeated from other feedback (which is a shame) is that I need to more concise, critical and analytical rather than too much babble.

My tutor mentions that she can see evidence of me using my written journal as a main site for reflections and analysis. She says ‘The journal is being used as the main site for your reflections and analysis, the quality of experimentation and reflection is feeding into your use of material qualities.  The reflection on your visual research is generally underpinning your experimental processes and creative strategies, which is helping you to develop your gestural, mark-making and tonal qualities.  This is also starting to inform your options for composition.’ This is a really positive comment for me as she can see that all aspects of my learning and experimentation is coming together to inform various aspects of my drawing. I was really uplifted by this particular comment.

Something that was picked up from my last assignment was my poor use of vocabulary, well I didn’t have a very broad range of it. I would repeat many phrases such as ‘i’m pleased with’. This was one of my aims to tackle as I wrote about my work and others and my tutor has been able to respond positively. You have clearly made good efforts to explore the quality and range in your vocabulary and phrasing- good practice.  This is improving the quality and focus of your reflective analysis, by being more specific and particular (rather than ‘liking’ or ‘being pleased’).  Continue to explore your vocabulary by noticing the language and vocabulary in your research and other students blogs.  Take notice of how they analyse and critique their own and others work; learning from their written, as well as visual language.

In relation to the nude figure, my tutor suggests that I might find the exhibition and catalogue ‘Flesh’ interesting in York City art gallery. This exhibition involves cross-disciplinary practice. This is one of my next steps to discover, as she has sent over some reviews to have a look through and record my thoughts on.

I was quite excited when my tutor mentioned that it was good to see a performative approach to drawing and she wondered whether this approach could be combined with longer periods of time within observational drawing. Good to see the experimental and performative approach to drawing; with feet, plastic and inks. It would be interesting to see how you might combine this approach with longer periods of observational drawing.

I need to make sure both my reflections and research are purposeful and relevant. I need to be continually questioning how or if it will inform my work. Much of your research is thoughtfully and purposefully analysed.  Do make sure you approach all your research this way- be aware that your research and reflections need to be both relevant and purposeful; always asking how might it feed into and inform your work.

I am using both primary and secondary resources to research artists e.g. emailing artists. One thing I was confident with was my Harvard referencing but apparently it was no consistent, so I need to look at this again.

My tutor recommends that I continue to attend life drawing classes it I can to develop my observational drawing skills.

I need to review my work and respond to my tutor’s comments and my own questions on my blog.

Pointers for the next assignment

  • Reflect on this feedback in your learning log.


  • Reflect more concisely and purposefully on relevant research.  Post content / context that you can establish connections with your ideas and development.  Analyse and reflect on what might inform your own work.


  • Consistently refer to and use the academic referencing for all your research:


  • Review the self-portrait and respond to my comments and questions on your blog.  I’m not asking you to redo the drawing- yet I am asking you to think about how you might have planned, approached and drawn it differently.


  • Review the foreshortening on the reclining figure.  Draw 3 small ‘prep’ drawings to more carefully observe and draw the foreshortening of the legs to the rest of the body.


All these points will be reflected fully.

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