head
head
 
 
introduction  
sketcher  
designer  
typographer  
draughtsman  
publisher  
worldbuilder  
maker  
modeller  
motionographer  
researcher  
 
  I have always strived to discover how things work and this has included a need to understand what I am doing as a creative. To this end I am now pursuing an autoethnographic exploration of my working processes.
Aug 2017  
Remnant 2010
   

Remnant (2010)
A response to the music of Monty Adkins which is more of a soundscape that suggests an expansive, timeless environment. To me, it hinted at a meditative state which went along with my spherical mandala like sketches & the animated experiments I had been doing at the time.
The outcome is Abstract and Diffuse in nature with no narrative structure and has an hypnotic quality using a technique that links to 'Cymatics' in the tradition of Robert Hook & Hans Jenny, also linking to Furniss' discussion about abstract animation (Art in Motion p235 ch13) talking about the Mandala and the work of early prcticioners such as Belson, McLaren, Whitney and Mary Ellen Bute.

   
Sketchbook - Maze
   
Isometric Maze
   
Maze - 2016
   

Maze - 1991 - 2016
Diametrically opposed to Remnant, this work reflects a feeling of frustration that signified the end of my drawing board career in technical illustration. Initially it started as a doodle in my sketchbook, but after many years of exploration and experimentation with various softwares I finally managed to make it into an animation albeit an incomplete one.
This work in any of its forms is a complex piece which defied any kind of automation in its execution, the only automated part was in its first realisation as it almost drew itself. In order to animate it successfully it had to be built in many layers which are not evident in the final outcome.
The early inspiration for the stucture comes from the internal workings of heavy Industrial electrical switchgear from the late 20th century, something I took great joy in taking apart as a child. In order to realise this work I had to rely on learning the software that marked the demise of my draughting career in later life.
As a further experiment, I did do a hand drawn version using traditional technical drawing skills but the process was so laborious it eventually drained creative momentum.
Maybe add animation?
(Bergson duration)

   
 
Alone - 2017

Alone (2017)
If Remnant is an example of diffuse or smooth animation and Maze an example of a more complex and striated animation, then Alone, I suggest, would sit in between the two in-sofar as it has qualities from both ends of a possible continuum. It has diffuse hypnotic qualities that remind me of the 'Abstronics' of Mary Ellen Bute made on oscilloscopes in the 1950's. Also, influences from this research, reading Eisenstien on Disney (1985 p24-p29), talking about our 'fascination with the flame' and relates this to a particular 'plasmatic' line quality evident here. At the other end of the scale, the execution is underpinned by hidden layers of complexity required to automate the animation process.
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Paracosm (After Wolf)
Whilst investigating my sketchbooks and their relevance to my practice, I began Reading Mark J.P. Wolf, Building Imaginary Worlds (2012), In the introduction I came across the idea of the 'Paracosm'. Looking up the origins of this, it is described as variously as a 'detailed imaginary world involving humans and/or animals or even alien creatures'. It is also used to describe the phenomenon of an imaginary friend. (First described by BBC researcher Robert Silvey, 1976) Wolf describes it as an 'innate and deliberate activity that can start in early life but continue to develop into adulthood'.
I can recognise this behaviour in my sketchbooks and in my approach to my work. Looking back at my sketches as a researcher is akin to archeologist or geographer approaching an unknown area to uncover hidden artifacts or map new territories. As the creator of these artifacts, the relationship is on a par with friends or collaborators, some relationships being easier than others.

 

Aug 2017  

Maureen Furniss Art in Motion
Abstract animation is an open rather than closed [text] (Kandinsky) offering no narrative or character to associate with. They require the viewer to take part in order to find meaning for themselves.

Traditional narrative structures rely on the logical thinking normally ascribed to the left hemisphere of the brain, usually associated with logic and the construction of verbal activity. The abstract works with the right hemisphere, concerned with intuitive thinking and sensory information (dreaming). The Left Brain component would be connected to our culture, habits and the outer world whereas the Right would be our inner sensational world.

Len Lye considers the idea of ‘Old Brain’ thinking (doodling film – 1984?) in relation to his abstract work, the ‘Old Brain’ being our automatic functioning limbic system.

Abstract art forms serve to halt the narrative construct thus forcing a shift from left to right brain activity much like the onset of a daydream perhaps.

Shamus Culhane suggests (P254) that “this shift can cause anxiety in the viewer who is not accustomed to right brain thinking ie ‘strictly intuitive and willing to forego reason & logic’ as they do not like the loss of control” .

many years ago I came up with an idea that some people have trouble being alone in an empty head. This goes some way to explain that idea. Carlos Castaneda’s Don Juan talks about techniques for ‘Stopping the world’ (The teachings of Don Juan – 196?) as a way of accessing the Nagual (abstract or Infinite). These techniques are old shamanic techniques and are reflected in many old indigenous cultures.

Meditative Practices – routes to intuition
In my practice I have found many devices to stimulate creativity. The most persistent being isolation and meditation. Various sources have given an insight into how this works, by suppressing the habitual and normally dominant left brain (logical) activity and allowing for the normally dormant right brain activity to take over. These techniques have brought me a connection with a more abstract inner world and given me a deeper understanding of my creative work.

A lot of my abstract animations are centred around depictions of the sphere / orb or Mandala. Driven initially by my first experiences with meditation they led me to read about Hindu and Buddhist culture regarding the Mandala & Chakra. This eventually led me to C.G.Jungs Red Book (Liber Novus 1913-1917) which was important to me as a sketchbook but also as a journey of introspection and self-discovery. Contained in this book are ‘confrontations with the subconcious’ and formed an experiment in what happens when you switch off consciousness. From earlier readings around his work I knew that he was interested in Buddhism but this work goes further into why. Contained within are many mandala’s and he refers to these as Achetypes and they became the basis for the rest of his work. (sources - Shamdasani 2012)

I feel some affinity for this work and Jungs process as it reflects the purpose of my sketchbooks and his interest in the mandala and Buddhist teachings.

Furniss talks about the Mandala in relation to early animation and how it works differently to a static meditation device. The purpose of a traditional Mandala as I see it is as a device for “Stopping the world” in Castanedas words, describing a term for stopping the internal dialogue that is constantly being generated by our cultural, habitual left brain.

The moving mandala, on the other hand, induces a trance-like state as Furniss describes. further to this, I would add, it imitates our internal visual function by supplanting it and taking you on a journey much like how the visual cortex takes over when meditating without any visual stimuli.

(Entoptic Forms)

The nature of Abstract art in any form does force a change in the way we look at them. Static or animated, Abstract art can force a sort of ‘gaze’ – unfocused rather than the natural predatory darting nature normally associated with looking. More becoming absorbed than acquiring or consuming.
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Torres - Process Drawing
Talks about two approaches to drawing – Boiling & Animated Sketching.

Animated Sketching (lightning sketches) are live sketches drawn quickly in a live (vaudevillian) performance. The emergence of cinema augments this by increasing the movement over time – see William Kentridge.

Boiling is the animated effect of adding perceived movement to static drawings by using multiple tracings of a single drawing (Bill Plympton). This is more a result of mechanised animation rather than the pre-animation traditional drawing prcess being extended by animation technology.

Both of these are primarily drawing processes, one is becoming, the other is a being-state of drawing. Both are static but moving.

Drawing is process, lines become forms. Mark making is the process of becoming, recognizable or not. Drawing is an important form of exploration.

Process Philosophy (Whitehead) “All things are the consequence of process” becoming other, suggesting that mark making is as significant as the finished product.

Concealment of the drawn in animation….
This exists in many creative practices and could be expanded into the importance of the hidden process – the “Making-of” phenomenon.

Drawing is movement – without it there would be no image, just a mark or a dot.

Torres - Process Cognition
Refers to Process Philosophy of Alfred North Whitehead. Also has connections with Deleuze & Guttiares if we think of the imagination as a smooth space and cognitive imagery adding striations to that space.........
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Deleuze & Guttiares - Smooth / Striated (1000 Plateaus 1440)
They talk about this as a series of oppositions, giving various examples to illustrate:
Looking at this, there are many things I am not sure I totally understand so it will take further investigation but it looks like a good framework for a continuum. My struggle to identify my field of practice has led to various models being explored: Liquid/Solid; Real/Hyperreal; Visible/Invisible; Internal/External. Without knowing it I was looking at the oppositions suggested by Deleuze & Guttiares in A Thousand Plateaus (Chapter 14 p474)
"Smooth space & Striated space - Nomad space & Sedentary" oppositions which suggest complex differences that exist in mixtures - "Smooth space is constantly being translated into striated space: Straited space is being reversed, returned to smooth space".
(Point & Line)
Given the complex diversity of my practice, this area of inquiry might help to costruct a theoretical structure (meta-theory) which can accomadate all areas of investigation or practice. It also allows for process to be included. As a lot of my practice revolves around exploring the processes of any particular discipline it would be useful to talk about how process adds striation to space. In D&G's example of the Sea as "Smooth space par exellence" (p479) being the "first to encounter the demands of increasingly strict striation", Maritime space was striated by the many processes required for navigation. Astronomy; Directional bearings; Lattitude & Longitude; Maps & Grids; Accurate measurement of time; all methods used to navigate whilst at sea.
The process involved in this example are numerous and complex and comparable to the many processes involved in animation, graphic design, technical illustration or 3d modelling. The Smooth/Striated opposition could even be used on the sketching/sketchbook with a little work.

Jun 2017  
Sketchbook - Chamber
   

Abstract Narratives - The latest framework which allows for more scope.

Towards a Theory of Graphic & Moving Image through an exploration of an abstract narrative continuum

This gives us a scale to work with from narrative to abstract and allows a discussion that can be broad enough in its remit to allow any of my affinities to be discussed.

Narrative *-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------* Abstract

Abstraction can be described as Analytic (reduced) or Diffuse (artistic) but using a scale allows for hybrids to exist.

The scale could be a triad or even a grid (Periodic table) - seeing my work as points of light punched in a piece of card ( back to Len Lyes particles in space)

Unpacking Abstract - Technical / Aesthetic
Essence - Additive / Reductive (minimal)

Audiences for different levels of abstraction - pragmatic and interpretive

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Archetypes
The discussion brought up the conservative nature of Jungian archetypes (needs to be expanded with all the variants of this thinking) So we need to find a way of explaining the potential for innovation with that in mind.

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Abstract (definition)
Adjective:
1. Existing in thought or as an idea but not having physical or concrete existence
theoretical, conceptual, notional, intellectual, metaphysical, philosophical, academic.
2. Relating to or denoting art that does not attempt to represent external reality, but rather seeks to achieve its effect using shapes, colours, and textures.
non-representational, non-realistic, non-pictorial, symbolic, impressionistic.

Verb:
1. Consider something theoretically or separately from (something else).
2. Extract or remove (something).

Noun:
1. A summary of the contents of a book, article, or speech.
2. An abstract work of art.

May 2017  
Moonliners
   

Graphic Narratives - Questions

what is my practice? - motion graphics
scifi / mystical / hyperreal / technical / information
what is the story? - graphic narratives

towards a theory of motion graphics through graphic narratives
population of graphic worlds & narratives
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Procrastination - Maybe Later
We’ve all experienced voids from productivity inhabited by boredom and avoidance. These distractions — typically in the form of technology and the internet, provide us with temporary periods of comfort, but in the long-term may consequently isolate you. Procrastination is a vastly misunderstood process, boredom can actually provide us with a unique space of introspective thought. Instead of killing time with mindless scrolling, it can be a tool that forces us to challenge the way we think and generate ideas.

Avoiding these screens and allowing ourselves to be bored, facilities our subconscious - thus filling these voids. List-making, storytelling and doodling, provide recordings of our own interior dialogs that enables us to ground bursts of creativity delivered by our subconscious that can be so easily missed.

The procrastinators notebook is a proactive device that embraces the highly relatable subject of procrastination, and prompts the user through illustrations that poetically respond to the emotions and experiences that embody this daily occurrence.

Joe Faulding, 2017
—————————————

Moonliners

Ideas - Locked in perpetuity causing an unbalance. Tulpas in the outer reaches of space - the heliopause.

TV - Broadcast into the past (space) to be captured by video pirates to sell on to the miners in the Kuiper belt.

Miners - In the Kuiper belt mining rare minerals, supplied with much needed entertainment by the video bootleggers (Moonliners) - they had the first contact with Tulpas.

DOA - Department of Awareness is an agency set up to look into the Tulpas and investigate the anomalies they brought about. This also turned into an investigation into the possible existence of the mysterious Dr. Payne.

Motion - Links to TV. Diagramatic explanations of concepts. Visual artefacts
—————————————


Apr 2017  
Sketchbook - Choronzon
   

Old Brain
History - 'the old brain at work'
Len Lye - Doodlin 1987 (Documentary)
Particles in space
Old brain - lymbic system - fear / control / dominance / reflex
Repetitive / Routine
Reptile brain - Cold / selfish / dogmatic
** ground this with examples
Old brain artworks
Inner / Outer worlds
Inner Space Travelogues
Holidays in the Heliopause (Infinite)
Things that grow in the dark
Manifesto for the Idea
------------------------------

Affinity
World Making & Levels of Imagination
Old Brain vs New Brain thinking - Art & design in both - Limbic syatem & Intuition
The question / topic - New approaches to Creative Design / Creativity
"Towards a more inclusive approach to Design Creativity"
It is broader than just Motion Graphics, it is about the culture of Design & Motion
This is where Spen introduced the idea of Affinity
Affinity Mechanics - Cyborgology
Affinity Politics - Subculture - Donna Harroway
-----------------------------

Spen on Y1 Sketchbook lecture
Compress first three sections
Affect - Liquid - Affinity - Liking / Attraction / Sympathy
Effect - Solid - Leadership / Control
Tribalism & Totems - Archetypes
Talking as the 3rd Person - How am I the problem?
Boredom & the lack of personal meaning - 'boredom is not connected with needs but desires & the desire for stimuli' Lars Svendson
All art comes out of boredom!
'Boredom is a superior state unconnected with work' - Colran
**examples to illustrate point - previous works
**methods? - almost by publication
What is the Affinity Politics? - situated knowledges
Attack the established

Mar 2017  
Carl Gustav Jung
   

Y1 Theory Lecture - Sketchbooks as research
A Bridge between Theory & Practice

Intro
A little bit about my work
A look at my research
A discussion about sketchbooks
Conclusions - The possible relevance to creatives

Exercise
Use your sketchbooks to make visual notes during the lecture.
Relax & do not censor this process.
This is not a drawing exercise but a doodling one.

My Practice
Graphic Designer,Technical illustrator & Motionographer
Many areas of work - difficult to define
Constantly evolving - Layers of paint – show Website - contextual portfolio
A Polymath - 'A man can do all things if he will' - (Leon battista alberti 1400's)

My Research
About - Visualising the Invisible
Starting point - Show Video
Now - Autoethnographic investigation of my sketchbooks
Moving towards - Meta Reality - Drawing things that dont exist

Theoretical Context
Confrontations with the Unconscious
Jung - 'Taking inner life seriously' - reinforcing the sketchbook
Mandala / Tarot as a device for mapping the inner world
Deleuze & Rhizomic learning

Discoveries
The difficulty of Research for Creative practicioners
Breaking the rules - A natural resistance to established dogma
Exploring the Nowhere (boundary) - the edges of the real - show Video
Solidity & Fluidity in my practice & thinking
Bergson - Metaphysics - stillness & movement
Eisenstien on Disney - Fluidity in animation. our fascination with the flame.
Zigmunt Bauman - liquid modernity - DIssolving established modernity

Relevance
How is this useful?
The importance of sketchbooks
The importance of Exploration & continued learning
Removal of solid thinking - the 'Am I allowed?'
So how do I get an A?

Links
Website
Invisible Video
Clockwork Cities Video

Feb 2017  
Search for self
   

Framework 2 - Feb 2017

1. Introduction
2. Contents
3. Sketching the Mundane (real) - Illustrator as Doodler
4. Holidays in the Heliopause - Adventures in World Building (Paracosms)
5. Stopping the World - Illustrator as Explorer
6. Dissolving the Solid - Illustarator as Alchermist
7. Welcome to the Invisible - Illustrator as Neophyte
8. Describing the Meta-Real - Illustrator as Motionographer
9. Death of the Mundane - Illustrator as Educator
-----------------------------------------

The Rhyzomatic being
World Building & constructed worlds - Moonliners / Invisible as an inversion of the Psyche - using this as a vehicle for Illustration & Animation.

Heliopause - Outer reaches of the interior universe
Kuiper Belt - Asteroid belt at the edge of the universe - allegory for dep neurosis or demons or unused ideas
Trawlers - Research - recording radiated radio waves from past
DOA - Investigators of the psyche -
Craft - Recognisable anchors to reality

World inversion & constructed worlds - Inferred world building
Paracosm - a device for orienting onself in reality - childhood play / adult creativity as an expression of self
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Everything as viewed from the threshold, the haitus, the break in continuity. The 'Crack between Worlds' in Castanedas words. This region is unformed but holds the key to everything I do, standing between the 'real' exterior and the invisible interior worlds. It offers a good vantage point between both realms and allows for the exploration of many forms of representation. These forms radiate out from this position and can be seen as agents of the interior 'Prime Motivator' (Aristotle) or or Intuition. (see Castaneda - 'Emanations of the Eagle'

Feb 2017  
Search for self
   

The search for Dr. Payne - An Illustrator acting as...
1. Sketcher
2. Designer
3. Typographer
4. Draughtsman
5. Publisher
6. Worldbuilder
7. Maker
8. Modeller
9. Motionographer
10. Researcher
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Introduction
As a creative, my approach to my practice overall would best be described as an Illustrator. I was originally trained in traditional Graphic Design and Technical Communications, but have always had a broad outlook on design in general.

Very early on when considering things of interest, my thinking revolved around a simple premise - A human made this. I am a human, so I should be able to work out how it works or how to make something similar. My pursuit since thinking this has been an exploration of all manner of things (physical & visual) and the creation of my adaptations with varying degrees of success. This goes some way to documenting a small part of the experiments and outcomes that have resulted from this exploration.

Sketcher
I have always drawn, since my earliest memory. To me it is as natural as thinking. Some 30 plus years of sketchbooks give testimony to the importance of this aspect of my working process. It is firmly embedded in my creative practice and is evidence of my design thinking. All of my visual or mechanical problems are solved through sketching. It is so spontaneous and immediate that often it spills out of the sketchbook and takes possession of any paper available regardless of suitability.

Designer
I have always been interested in Design, Design of any kind, regardless of discipline. I find that good design answers a need in me that is almost indescribable, but which I can recognise when it occurs. I would not describe myself as a good designer, I am an Illustrator that looks for solutions to design problems in my own particular way.
It has been said that I am a bit of a perfectionist when it comes to design. I personally think that is far from the truth but it has been said a few times so it may have something to do with my being taught by an 'old school' typographer who wouldn't let anything pass - his moto was "its not right till it looks right".

Typographer
A character trait of mine that I have come to recognise is one that can only be described as the 'not quite right' effect. This comes about when looking at something I quite like and having a feeling of slight dissatisfaction at a small aspect of the design. Typography and font design is one area where I found this happening a lot.
As an Illustrator in the role of Typographer, I spent a lot of time tracing out fonts for whatever design or signage and inevitably ended up adding my own so-called improvements to placate my percieved angst. Over the years, this has left me with more than a few of my own 'improved' and in some cases completely redesigned font sets. This process has been now made much easier with modern digital techniques, and allows for quick custom font creation.

Draughtsman
If I were to say that sketching is the most natural place for me as an Illustrator, then Draughtsman, as a discipline, would be its natural oppsite.
My Graphic Design training gave me design discipline, and an appreciation for composition. Technical Illustration gave me a 'trained eye' and a much deeper understanding of draughting in perspective. I also gained an understanding of the importance of line weight and the quality of line which is still evident in my practice. This has helped me to appreciate my sketching and the similaities as well as the differences.

Publisher
The Illustrator needs to be published! For whatever reason, I have never really been a self publicist when it comes to my work. There was a point when I questioned why there where so few publications that catered for the kind of things I liked as a creative. Some got close here and there but, again, the 'not quite right' alarm would be activated.
Whilst working in Technical Publications, I got an insight into how basic publications worked, but at the time it relied on outsourcing expensive print processes. Later, when desktop computers became available I was able to set about trying to creating my own. At first this created a problem as I had to create a story to fit around my drawings and ideas which brought the progress to a standstill. Only frustration was able to break through to allow for a few small publications. The bigger story is yet to be realised.

Worldbuilder
As a frustrated Illustrator of Comics or Graphic Novels, I felt that it was obligatory to create a story as a vehicle for my sketchbook drawings. Then it became apparent that this story would need a universe to exist within. Although this slowed the realisation progress down to a standstill, It did allow for a considerable amount of World Building and artifact development. A lot of this had to do with technological developments catching up to assist with the process.
The few stories I have (and continue) to develop over the years are conveniently set within the same universe and form a metaphor or inversion of the inner world.

Maker
I have always had a very inquisitive nature. This applies to every aspect of my life and, from early on, I have had the need to take things apart to find out how they worked. Unlike today, back then they could acually be taken apart much to my parents annoyance. Later this turned into an interest in construction kits which, amongst other things, gave me a clue about putting things back together.
This helped to form my interest in Technical Illustration as a career path, and in turn led to my interest in making things. Part of the role of a Technical Illustrator was taking machinery apart to photograph and measure it before making detailed plans so that it could be illustrated in full perspective.
This layed the foundations for a good mechanical and electrical knowledge. This was first was used to fix up and modify cars for clubman rallying. Later restoration of classic cars and the prop making for avant-garde street theatre companies.

Modeller
My early experience with construction kits gave me a foundation in spatial awareness. Later at college on an Art & Design foundation course, I had some success with stone sculpture. Then with Technical Illustration I learned 3d perspective drawing. All of these skills manifest as a career as a Draughtsman in Technical Publications and various freelance projects in Interior, Furniture Design & Prop Making.
As desktop computers became more readily available in the early 1990's i took the opportunity to repurpose this skillset for 3d Modelling. This could be seen as an extension of my earlier model making with construction kits but also has similarities with the processes involved in technical illustration This knowledge of 3d modelling would become the starting point for my present career as an educator.

Motionographer
To me, the natural progression of my work as an Illustrator is as a Motionographer. I cannot say that I am an animator. I am more of a Motion Graphics artist, but there is a part of me that wants to explore more abstract motion pieces, hence 'Motionographer' is a better description.
Most of the things captured in my sketchbooks are of things that are 'captured' in movement. The visits to my books are usually accompanioed by music which could go some way to explaining the movement in whatever I am drawing and may even be the inspiration for a lot of the sketches.

Researcher
I have always strived to discover how things work and this has included a need to understand what I am doing as a creative. To this end I am now pursuing an autoethnographic exploration of my working processes.
So far examination of my sketchbooks has revealed aspects of my ideas that don't fit with any easily definable design discipline. They are visual artifacts that populate an inner landscape hinting at some kind of autonomous world building. As my nature intends, I want to find out how this woirks...

Feb 2017  
Solid vs Liquid
   

Discussion with Derek Hales - Feb 2017
About design fictions or speculative design
Norman Foster - Colonising Mars
Rachel Armstrong - Persephone Project

Games?
My work as it relates to Comics & World Building
Forms of representation - Actor (illustrator) in the role of...
Extrapolation - Next step in the evolution of...

(Why?)
Mining in film / Salvage (moonliners) - Industrialisation for example, has it become Hyperreal?
My narrative as a reversal or metaphor of inner space & vica-versa. Building hyperreal?

Expanded practice of an illustrator - Illustrator as...

Designfictions.com
--------------------------------

Trying to focus - Feb 2017
The search fro Dr. Payne - What the fuck am I???

Derek put forward the idea that I am an illustrator acting as whatever (all of my roles ) this sat well for a while - enough time for me to build a website about that premise. On further observation I was not comfortable with this definition in that I felt like a fraud. I cannot honestly say that I approach all disciplines like an Illustrator - so what then?

I do approach things as an observer. This allows me to investigate anything that captures my interest. A large part of this focus is in the area of Design hence a lot of my responses are of this nature, but this approiach allows me to look eslewhere.

** see Gurdjieffs 9 personality types (Ichazo - Proto-Analysis) or enneatypes / enneagrams (Ouspensky)
** Thes also relate to Don Juans 'Directions' (Casteneda)

I have to take issue with this as my personality type is not reflected there - why am I not there? Am I a polymath? (Leon Battista Alberti) and does this fit with a multi-disciplinary practice?

Feb 2017  
Solid vs Liquid
   

Y1 Theory Lecture (unused) - Solidity/Fluidity
An adaptive & inclusive approach to design or creative thinking

Reality
Education & Training
Foundations of broader thinking - design foundation
Graphic design - Measured, gridded layout firmly based in reality
Technical Publication - deeper into reality - Hyper measured
Drawing board reveries - Doodles & Commentary
Music - Punk Rock - New Romantic - Electronic

Holidays in the Hyper real
Practice - Tech pubs - Draughting
Comics - Design Fictions & the hyper real
World Building - Prop making
Digital Transformation - Reprogramming

Invisible
Research - Exterior/Interior
Borders of perception - Separate realities
Invisible worlds - Taking inner worlds seriously
Meta Reality -

the future is not what it used to be

death to the mundane

American writer Herbert Sebastian Agar put it ( in A Time for Greatness, 1942 ), 'The truth that makes men free is for the most part the truth which men prefer not to hear.'

Op Art
Bridget Riley - Bridget Riley
Yayoi Kusama - Yayoi Kusama
Neville Brody
Jamie Reid

Jan 2017  

Possible framework
1. Introduction to the artist - 30 Yrs of sketchbooks
2. Soundtracks to the Real - The importance of music to the creative process
3. Holidays in the Hyper Real - Comics as research
4. Stopping the World - When solids dissolve
5. Surviving the Post Real - Old Skills / New World
6. Describing the Unreal - Drawing things that don't exist
7. Individuation - Unifying Real & Meta Real
8. Defying the Mundane - Subversion as a teaching method

Website
Index - Intro - 30Yrs of sketches - self portraits?
The Real - Soundtracks - Music 4 design - Flyers - Quotes
Hyperreal - Design Fictions / Future Fictions / Speculative design / World Building
Collapse - Dissolution / Collapsing worlds / dissolving the solid
Survival - Surviving the post real / old skills - new worlds
Invisible - Descriptions of the Meat Real / drawing things that dont exist
Murder - Death of the real / defying the mundane

Jan 2017  
Sketchbook - Birds
   

Start a conversation ??

Bergson - metaphysics / intuition & intellect - Leszek Kolokowski
Kant - Relevance?

Deleuze & Cinema (Bergson) - Ronald Bogue

the discussion was about static artifacts and how they might be moving - in relation to outcomes or sketchbooks.

Statics >>> Mobile - How do they induce movement?
perception in cognitive terms. Convenient distraction, not creation but subtraction. reversed perception - subjectively filtered. Ways of expression - how are they moving?

Bring in Early History (from proposal) Mandalas - Maureen Furniss / Oscar Fischinger / Abstract

Not clear what's at stake - Why? What?
What is my research for? - Self Realisation / Artistic Practice / Educational Potential

Perhaps...
[Towards a theoretical foundation of Motion Graphics]

Motion Graphics - 'It was then wasn't rich - reactivating - getting rich again' (historically speaking)

Deleuze on Bergson - revitalising ideas on film - new state.

What do we take account of?
Who I've found interesting?
What are the elements at play?
What is at stake for this kind of education - What is important?
Why do we need it? - Justify
Do we need it to enrich Film?
For personal development?
Developing a framework....
--------------------------------------
Bergson vs Plato

Metaphysics - Abstract Concepts - Things - What is there? what is it like?
Analysis - Isolation of things - finding commonality - measuring - categorising - not real

Up - Eternity
I
Time - Metaphysics (vehicle is intuition) This is similar to Casteneda via Theun Mares (time tends toward zero, while awareness tends toward infinity)
I
Down - Material / repetitive

We are cognitive beings - our cognitive process dissects reality into segments or fragments that have no basis in reality.

Jan 2017  
Sketchbook - Books
   

Theorists & Writers
C.G. Jung - Individuation / Self vs Ego / Red Book / Mandalas as Archetypes
David Lewis Williams - Art, Shamanism, Entropy - Mind in the cave
Kant - Intuitionism / Aesthetic / Duality
Bergson - Intuitionism / Primacy of Movement / Process / Metaphysics / Process Philosophy / Methods of intuition
A.N. Whitehead - Process & Reality / Metaphysics
Gurdjieff - Kundabuffer
Ouspensky - Layered Meaning
Niels Bohr - Reality & Potentiality
Deleuze - Film / Rhizome / Matter not Self
Rodney Collin - Long body of the Universe
Chris Strutt - Inner & Outer
Carlos Casteneda - Don Juan /Shamanism / Seperate Realities
Alistair Crowley - Book of Thoth / Tarot / Golden Dawn
Rudolf Steiner - Philosophy of freedom / Anthroposophy
Lady Frieda Harris - Tarot / Anthroposophy
Israel regardie - Golden Dawn / Kabbalah / Magick
Robert Anton-Wilson - Illuminatus Trilogy / Psychadelia
Grant Morrison - Pop Magick / Psychadelia / Comic culture
Scott McLoud - Comic Theorist
Niel Coen - Comic Theorist / Visual Narrative
Mark Wolf - World Building
Donald Schon - Reflective Practice
Michael Polanyi - Tacit Knowledge
Inna Symmetsky - Rhizomatic Learning / Tarot (Deleuze Guttiari) / Edusemiotics
Baudrillard - Hyperreality
Marshall McLuhan - Media
Edwin Abbott - Flatlands
Maureen Furniss - Psycho Physics
Elizabeth Price - Intuitive Process
Andrew Blauvelt - Hippie Modernism
Jordan Belson - Hippie Modernism / Oz Magazine
Wassily Kandinsky - Bahaus / Abstract art
John Dewy - Colour as force / Bauhaus / Black Mountain
William James - Primacy of Process / Stream of Conciousness
Steve Goodman - Material Affect
Hermann Rorschach - Process & Materialism
John C Lilley - Psychadelia / Centre of the Cyclone / Quiet centre / Isolation
Sergei - Eisenstien On Disney / Fascination with the flame / fluidity
Noel Gough (Laurel Richardson) - Writing as a method of diiscovery
Al Jawed - Comics as Research
Plato - Allegory of the Cave
Zlavoj Zizek - Lacan / Hegel / reality

Jan 2017  
Sketchbook - Surfer
   

Solid / Liquid Thinking in design

Solid Art
Definable - Measurable - Empirical - Categorical - Recognisable - Conformist - Disciplined
Subject to analysis (or subject of) having definable parameters
Bergson - Material / Repetitive
Static - In essence not real: just a snapshot of the real

Fluid / Liquid Art
Undefinable - Difficult to measure - hard to categorise - Etheric - Non-Conformist
Defies analysis - Indescribable
Bergson - Eternal
Mobile - In essence, real - we are mobile beings. Our cognitive process dissects mobility into segments that have no basis in reality. (Deleuze - planes of immenance)

Perspective
Cartesian: 3 point / 2 point / 1 point - Ttraditional architectural - Descartes
Curvelinear: Defined by Andre Barre & Albert Flocon in La Perspective Curveligne

Zigmunt Bauman - Liquid modernity - DIssolving established modernity and the solid structures that uphold it to build new a modernity.

Eisenstien on Disney - Fluidity in animation. - talks about our fascination with the flame.

Zaha Hadid - Fluidity in architecture.

Manifestos for both - Declarations of intent

Nov 2016  
Sketchbook - Pisceans
   

Solid vs Liquid
When it comes to Design subjects, the Solid is relatively easy to define. For instance, Graphic design could be described in terms of solidity as could technical illustration. Both disciplines are measured, accurate and infinitely definable with very specific rulesets.
For the purpose of this discussion, the Liquid is a bit more difficult to define. Any creative artifact that doesn't conform to a grid or regular measurement would be a good start although there are some works that might defy this supposition.

1. For the Solid - Typography; Print; Layout; Info Graphics; Comics...
2. For the Liquid - Classic art; Life Drawing; Traditional Animation; Sketching
3. For either - Mathematics; Music; Op Art; Motion graphics; Sculture

As a designer schooled in traditional (Cartesian) 3 point perspective, there came a point where my instict drove me toward deviating from this ruleset. The deviation challenged me to break from its dogma and explore more spherical methods. From this, I formed an idea independant of any given knowledge at the time around the notion of curvelinear perspective. It was only a lot later that I found that this too had a rule set. It was much more complex and had it origins in cartography and the measurement of the surface of spheres (planets), but a rule set all the same. Andre Barre & Albert Flocon - La Perspective Curveligne (Jean Fouquet & Leonardo DaVinci) later - jason Cheezeman-Mayer - Perspective for Comic Books from the ground up.
This meant that it could me measured and defined but still didn't quite fit within the solid category.

Nov 2016  
Sketchbook - Pisceans
   

Importance of comics
Whilst trying to make sense of my sketchbooks one question came to mind: where could I place this work in real world terms? I would suggest the best way of for me to make sense of this is in 'comic' terms. Although a lot of this material is non linear it does have a narrative. In trying to make sense of it as a whole, the comic genre would be the best medium to categorise it within.
Add quotes from as many comics theorists and examples as poss
This categorisation does get a little stretched later on but only by the traditional categorisation of the comic genre. Scott McLeod even calls for the understanding of comics to be reevaluated (quote here) and with graphic enterprises like Unflattening (author) and Capacity (author), artists are starting to explore the boundaries of this medium.
Academics are even exploring this area, using Comics as research in an endeavour to make knowledge rather than exchange knowledge (cite M.J. Jawad). With this in mind, I am looking to my sketchbooks as a resource which will form the basis of a visual lexicon that could be categorised with further investigation.

Nov 2016  
Sketchbook - Maze
   

Introduction
W.H. Auden said "I write so I can see what I'm thinking". Thinking about my practice in this way, I draw to see what I'm thinking as I'm not naturally drawn to writing. I think visually us all sketching is my thinking made visible. (extend)
This process has left me with an archive of some 35 years of sketches, doodles and musings. This is raw data for investigation: They are the field notes documenting journeys into my interior.

Social landscape
On the first pass the investigation discovers the surface material to be the most obvious aspect. As the sketches were made primarily at the drawing board whilst working on complex technical illustration, they formed a release for the imagination from the constraints of the measurred line . So they consist of song lyrics, sardonic political commentary and caricatures of the workmates. Also present are renderings of artefacts from the various sources (comics graphic novels and art books) trying to capture a particular style or technique that interested me at the time. Other noticeable things are scribblings - usually started when cleaning technical pens which are notorious for blocking up on a regular basis - these start as scribbles but often end up being abstract visual pieces or sometimes profound original pieces.
The earlier sketchbooks were a constant companion and reflected my state of mind at the time. Often confused and chaotic with the auld alliance of potential here and there, looking back over them there appear as a storage device for ideas and, most entertaining from of were served as a relief valve for many psychological issues.

Intuitive landscape
Between the chaos of the muindane commentary and the investigation of artistic technique, the necessity of pen cleaning started to bring forth some interesting artefacts. It is only after some time and with a kind of forensic investigation or archeology (without let or drawings these earlier ones would be meaningless TRAINED EYE TOM LIDDELL ) some of these scribbles start to coelesce into something with much deeper meaning. These start as quite simple drawings, with no training in graphics and technical publications that could easily be mistaken for design experiments, but later developments show them to be the starting points of more significant things.
At this point it is important to outline part of my technical training as a draughtsman. Four key things are relevant here:
1. perspective and the depiction of objects in 3D space: in its simplest form the cube in 3 point perspective. Linear, definable in a measured way. This could be seen as a form constant for a technical illustrator.
2. Line weight: use of thick and thin line to create the illusion of weight and solid form.
3. Of the depiction of a sphere in 3D space: to the casual observer it is just a circle. To differentiate and create the illusion of a 3D object we use shading as a form of shorthand to sell the illusion much like with line weight.
4. In the so called trained eye: the most ueful and adaptable to tool at an artists disposal. Tom Liddell, our course leader at blackpool college of art and design, the of his students the gift of the 'trained eye'. This consolidating the three years training on the course into the ability to trust our judgment when looking at a piece of artwork and saying, if it looks right, it is right. Things that aren't visually correct, he supposed, will jump out and poke you in the eye. This lesson overall has stood the test of time and is served me well in many ways.
Using these lessons as a guide whilst investigating my archive, I have been able to trace the origins of drawings of importance to me now. Drawings of real emotional significance seemed to come from nowhere: out of a rudimentary scribble or a discreet mark on paper. They are subconscious, akin to automatic writing or remote drawing. These may be influenced or enabled by my technical training, but they have only become significant a lot later on. The origins could have been totally missed if it were not for this investigation.

Oct 2016  
Sketchbook - Sphere
   

Donald Schon - 'reflective practice' as a model - write then practice giving developmental insight. Continuous learning - experience doesn't necessarily lead to learning. This is an alternative to formal learning or knowledge transfer and an important way ofbringing together theory and practice.
Wiki - 'not just looking at past actions & events, but conciously looking at emotions, experiences, actions and responses. adding to existing knowledge to increase understanding'.

John Dewey - 'Education is life'.

Michael Polanyi (polymath) - 'Tacit Knowledge' (understood or implied without being stated) Argues against positivism. he believed that creative acts (acts of discovery) are charged with strong personal feelings. He argued that 'informed guesses, hunches & imaginings are exploratory acts motivated by passions'. These cannot be defined in formal terms - A pre-logical phase he called 'tacit knowledge' - a useful process that can be brought to bear in an attempt to make sense of some problemor theory.

Deleuze - Education & Becoming (Inna Semetsky) - Rhizomatic learning (self renewal) Autopoisis, remapping. Key texts - Paragraphs about different approaches (interesting intro) Non-traditional research. Gold standard??
Affect (verb) - (Can) Make a difference to.
Effect (noun) - (Was the) Result / Impact

1. New Sacred Geometry
2. Straight vs Curved - Solid vs Liquid
3. Interior vs Exterior
4. Tarot - Links to Book of Thoth - Lady Frieda Harris & Rudolf Steiner (anthropaosophy)
5. Inna Semetsky / Deleuze / Rhizomic Learning
6. Jung & Tarot - Archetypes
7. Ouspensky / Regardie / Qabbalah / Tree of life

Layered meaning - Ouspensky: all possible meanings - layered symbolism
Freud - 'the Masochist will create a seperate entity to accomplish a repulsive level of self abuse'.

July 2016  
Sketchbook - Invisible
   

So far examination of my sketchbooks has revealed aspects of my ideas that don't fit with any easily definable design discipline. They are visual artifacts that populate an inner landscape hinting at some kind of autonomous world building. As my nature intends, I want to find out how this works...

1. Auto Ethnographic observations on sketchbook archive.
2. Relationships within the area of Comics - Scott McLoud, Will Eisner, Moebius etc
3. Pulled varius references & Influences as list
4. Pulled various form constants (standards) as list (revise)
5. Formed an idea to document this as some form of comic or graphic novel ( Flattening or Capacity style ). or maybe hand drawn motion graphic to bring it together. maybe some sort of technical manual - still undefined.
6.Technical manual approach would suit my way of thinking - taking a form from my sketchbook and following it through its development with a structured & annotated narrative arc.
7. The unstructured sketchbook approach would allow the natural environment & context to be evident. It would be harder to describe the process with this method perhaps but it would be easier to produce.
8. Which is more important, the analysis of the artifacts or seeing the artifacts in their natural habitat? Am I trying to develop my own visual lexicon (ref_) to move my research on and take me to the next step.
9. The occurance of the social imprint or...
------------------------
Essentialist graphic language - fixed VS Anti Essentialism in Animation - Transient
Solid Vs Liquid (perhaps) - transition tween solid & liquid
looking for history of essentialist undersatnding.
Significance! Expanded practices?
What am I doing - Alignments?
as a designer
as an animator
affiliations - an actor?
language performativity
performative utterance - Judith Butler / J.L Austin
-------------------------
Progression:
Presentation - story so far - bits of work
Literary review - brief summary
Frame my question - revisit proposal
my fluid allignment - 4000 wds

Apr 2016  

Shedding light on the things deep within - understanding them in a clear untarnished way, without glorification, adornment or embelishment - just as they are.
Trying to give them meaning in a pragmatic way, not losing sight of the events that have led to the discovery of things that are hidden deep within.

An auto-ethnographic reflection on an archive of sketchbooks.
1. Draughting - Technical publications / Technical Manuals
2. Perspective - Measured / Definable
3. Sketching - Comics & Graphic Novels / Concepts
4. Change of perspective - Experiental shift
5. Re-evaluation - Exploring new realms
6. Invisible - Unmeasurable & undefinable
----------------
Oct - Proposal / Personal intro lecture Y2
Nov - Infographics / New Sacred Geometry theory
Dec -
Jan - Sound & Vision Y1 Theory lecture
Feb - Hippie Modernism / skills audit
Mar - research plan
Apr - Comics as theory / Drawing as a method
----------------
What is the question ? what is the arc?
----------------
Self evaluation / Historical context / Comics & Information graphics toward the evaluation of a new sacred geometry. All I see when looking into sacred geometry are definitions framed in old thinking - all about god, spiritual thinking or hard core mathematics. There is nothing much about Design or visual creativity in this discussion. Nothing that brings them all together in an interesting way - is it taboo?
Square > Cube > 3 point perspective
Circle > Sphere > Curved perspective
Squaring the circle - controlling nature - doing the impossible - discussions in mathematics
Joy of Pi / Flatlands - Edwin Abbott / 4th dimension - Ouspensky
-----------------
Describe an arc - from drawing board (sketchbook) to sacred geometry.
characters in the story - point / circle/ square / exotic shapes
Line / cube / sphere / torus / platonic solids

Mar 2016  
Chladni Plates
   

Discussion with Spencer about the possible frameworks for research - he produced a map looking at the connections that might be relevant to my areas of interest. (insert Map or summary)

(at this point focused around the audio visual aspect)
We talked about intuition as a central theme, linked that to sound visual translation, Psycho Physics and the Art - Science overlap. Maureen Furniss as a pioneer of experimental film making, then Elizabeth Price and her intuitive process ( 18th & 19th Century science journals ) This relates to my background in technical publication. Talked about Hippie Modernism and the missing link between Modernism & Post Modernism. We looked at Bergson, John Dewey and William James and the theory of the early 1900's, how I need to familiarise myself with this material.

Bergson - Methods of intuition; Duration (primacy of time in perception)
James - Stream of conciousness
Dewey - Influences on Black Mountain & Bauhaus ( tten / Albers / Nagy ) His theories on colour as force, also on self development & growth.

All of the above and how they link to the primacy of process (whitehead?) the practicioners and how they are all process philosophers. This lead to a discussion about Bergson and process philosophy still having a strong sense of individual perception,phenomenology and experience. This then brought us to how it lys the ground for the stronger materialism of Deleuze and how he removes the self or subject and focusses solely on matter. This in turn took us to Steve Goodman, material affect and the collapse of matter & sensation. The last part was about Rorschach Audio and how it sits between Bergson & Deleuze ( Process & Materialism ).

From my personal reading, I pulled out
John C Lilley - Centre of the cyclone & The quiet centre.
James' - Primacy of Process.
Blauvelt - Hippie Modernism.
Deleuze - Altered states in film.

Mar 2016  
Sound Visualisation in Cinema 4d
    Developed a cross year process workshop around the theme of audio visualisation. This complemented my Y1 lecture on the same subject as it was a Y1 Studio project brief. This workshop took the form of a 3d VFX response using video tracking within Cinema 4d. (needs more context)

Feb 2016  
Chladni Plates
    Writing a theory lecture for Y1 around the theme of sound visualisation for graphic designers & animators. Looking at graphic responses to electronic sound, including; Teslas ideas about frequency & vibration as a starting point. Early telegraphy - Joseph Henry, Alfred Vail & Henry Morse. Morse code as a basic form of notation. Joe Schillinger and his more creative notation. John Cage taking this to an abstract. More contemporary with Brian Eno & the transition to digital representations with sequencer software.
This moved into frequency & oscillation with the work of Karl Ferdinand Braun & Leon Theremin and to the visual work of Mary Ellen Bute and her experiments with oscilloscopes and animation (abstronics).
I then moved on to talk about Harmonics & Vibration and the work of Robert Hooke, later developed by Ernst Chladin, in the field of Cymatics, a name given by Hans Jenny who brought this work into the electronic realm in the 1960's. With its relevance to my research, I linked this section of the lecture to Mandalas and the connection of vibration with meditation.
The final part of the lecture brought it up to date, talking about modern digital responses and contemporary artists working with these ideas. I included some of my work with Monty Adkins talking about my approch, including both analogue and digital techniques.
This was a relatively short and superficial lecture but could be devleloped into a more comprehensive version. In discussion with my supervisor (Spencer), we talked about the possibility of framing some of my research around a series of themed lectures centered around my areas of interest, which would also be relevant to our course
Nov 2015  
    Writing a cross year process workshop on information & interface graphics. Trying to find a way of mapping this work into my research, the idea came about developing this into a theory (lecture) around the visual representation of data. Relating this to my background in Technical Publications - more recently renamed information graphics - it can be seen as relevant material to study. Taking this further, it could be expanded into an exploration into 'New Sacred geometry' prevalent in modern cinema.
     
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