I thought it prudent of me to research some of my personal favourite artworks incorporating Flowers. I have always found it important to immerse myself in the design of the past to be able to create designs for the future. How can I go about my visual and handwritten research? My chosen images will all have specific aspects/facets of interest that I wish to explore; mark-making, observational drawing, painting, stitch, print, continuous line drawing and collage will allow me to create a visually rich and creative body of research, enabling me to hone my final designs.
HENRI MATISSE, SAFRANO ROSES AT THE WINDOW, 1925, OIL ON CANVAS
Why have I chosen this? Only recently have I come to appreciate Matisse, previously thinking his work was amateur at best. Today, I master at his beautiful and diverse range of mark-making qualities found with his colourful and expressive opus. I will endeavour to create my own range of floral/bloom studies inspired by Matisse.
Aspects to explore: Line and Colour
EDOUARD MANET, FLOWERS IN A CRYSTAL VASE, 1882, OIL ON CANVAS
Why have I chosen this? Manet is one of my all time favourite artists, and is considered one of the fathers of Modert Art. His natural progression from Realism into Impressionism lifted his work to another level. When looking at his work you are transported to a time and place in which you can smell, see, touch and taste we he did at the time. Time to sketch in the style of Manet.
Aspects to explore: Brushstrokes and realism.
VINCENT VAN GOGH, IRISES, 1889, OIL ON CANVAS
REALISM, POST-IMPRESSIONISM, EXPRESSIONISM
Why have I chosen this? Van Gogh, although now extremely commercial and well known, has always been a favourite of mine. I tend to prefer his lesser known work, it exudes a more intimate and personal documentation between the thin line of madness and genius. His expressive fluid lines have always tantalised me to take a journey through every square inch of his work.
Aspects to explore: Texture, line and pattern
GEORGIA O’KEEFFE, RED CANNA, 1924, OIL ON CANVAS
AMERICAN MODERNISM, ABSTRACT ART, MODERNISM
Why have I chosen this? Although not the biggest fan of O’Keeffe’s work, I admire the beautiful etherial qualities of her more abstract work. A lot of people have speculated her abstract floral designs have a deeper meaning; flowers being a metaphor for the female reproductive organs, specifically the vulva. Her use of colour is incredible.
Aspects to explore: Colour co-ordination, layering, abstraction
HANS BOLLONGIER, STILL LIFE WITH FLOWERS, 1639, OIL ON CANVAS
Why have I chosen this? I had not previously heard of this artist, but knew about the Dutch Golden Age, especially the work of The Dutch Masters such as BOSCH, VERMEER, HALS & RIJN. The mastery of observational skills found within this time period is infectious to me; imagine what I could complete with skills such as this!! A BUSY BLOOM, if ever I saw one, and absolutely perfect to explore for this project. Rich, earthy, yet subdued colours draw the views in…touch me, feel me and desire me.
Aspects to explore: Observational drawing, colour theory
WILLIAM MORRIS, IRISES, YELLOW AND COBALT BLUE, CIRCA 1890, PRINT
Why have I chosen this? Morris is a master of pattern and colour, and my chosen design incorporates some of my favourite subject matter found within artwork…IRISES & BIRDS. I wonder if I can research books/workshops allowing me to learn and study how to master observing these subject areas.
Aspects to explore: Photoshop, Illustrator, workshops
OLILON REDON, BOUQUET OF FLOWERS, 1900-05, PASTEL ON PAPER
Why have I chosen this? I adore the subtleties within the floral works of Redon; pastel on paper allows a rich and subdued quality to live in symbiosis It’s as if individual aspects of the painting are allowed to live as one, but ultimately marry together to create a vision of beauty and simplicity.
Aspects to explore: Oil/pastel, observational study, colour co-ordination
CLAUDE MONET, WATERLILLIES, 1916, OIL ON CANVAS
Why have I chosen this? Possibly one of the most famous paintings studying a floral motif. I specifically chose one of the slightly less known of the series, primarily for it’s juxtaposition and vibrant use of colour. The floral aspect is both highly observational and stylised.
Aspects to explore: Stylisation, observational studies, colour theory
JAN DAVIDSZ DE HEEM, FESTOON WITH FLOWERS, 1660-70, OIL ON CANVAS
Why have I chosen this? Possibly one of the most magnificent floral studies I have ever seen. The marriage between the intense colour and monotone nature of the black only adds to the vibrancy and life-force of the painting.
Aspects to explore: Juxtaposition of individual studies, contrast exploration
Having discussed the brief in detail, I now find myself wanting to find out more about the Symbolism, History and multi-dimensionality of the flower through the subject of Art & Design. The next stop is to find out more about my chosen Trend…BUSY BLOOMS.