Thursday, 20 March 2014

365.Wishes for street food suggestions

A few unrelated notes...

1.Today my eyes were kinda killer, an emerald modification of this tutorial here. I find this site really useful for good make up tutorials, and powerdoom has to be no 1 for makeup inspiration. Make up, amongst a mulititude of other things is on my writers mind. So I thought it'd be useful to note down some of my recent post ideas, things I'm hoping to write soon:-
  • Embroidery pt 1: tutorials/basics
  • Embroidery pt 2: examining resurgance of embroidery/ artist inspiration
  • Diary writing changes linked to blogging mishaps/naiveity/mistakes
  • Sexuality and language
  • Love of Cabaret and drama
  • "Masculinty"/"Femininity" in clothes and feeling like a warrior
  • Handmaids Tale and red

2.These 2 songs need to serenade you all. My remedy for sadness is badly singing 'I believe in the power of love!'.

3.I have  a rather large collection of post, and having so many letters and cards makes me so happy. Yet I'd kinda forgotten about this little colection of cards that I got through postcrossing (which I wrote about here), and today am reminded to get involved with the postcrossing community again.
4. I semi regularly read rookie, and think this recent article on internet burnout was really important and helpful.

5.The two books above are really great for any literature nerds like me.
6. I'm heading to LAAANDEN (London) next week for a univeristy open day, and was wondering if anyone knows a good place to get your hands on some street food? Please let me know in the comments below.


Sunday, 16 March 2014

364.Wishes for artistic visions

Above I wear the clothes of an artist (ripped jeans, large overcoat, Gustav Klimt style blue smock) in homage to the fact that I’m currently studying at art college and unlike many of my peers I’m not at university. If like me last year, you’re undecided on what to do after studying you’re a-levels then the art foundation course might be for you.

What is Art Foundation?
-If you’re already studying an arty (arty here means all visual art and design practices such as graphics/textiles/fashion ect.) A-level then you might already know that art foundation is kinda the bees knees route onto an arty degree, and that’s the precipice of the course. Art foundation is not a foundation degree but a year long course (mine is specifically titled Edexcel BTEC level 3 Foundation diploma in Art & Design) classed as further education. It is free if you are 18 or under when enrolling and when studied within your home region.

Why do it?
-As mentioned above, if you feel like studying an art degree (Go you!) then it’s often suggested that you’ll have more chance of getting onto your chosen degree with a foundation course under your belt, with some courses even requesting it. Art foundation greatly develops your skills and gives you the chance to build up a larger, more varied portfolio (the thing that will play a big part in the application process). Now by no means does this mean institutions wont take you without foundation, some do, but its worth considering- plus an extra year making art = FUN!

Why I personally did art foundation is a little different to that nice clear explanation above. I knew I wanted to go to university, yet I battled with deciding which subject I wanted to study (because like, OMG, there are WAY too many exciting things in this world and I kinda wanna know everything). I narrowed myself to Art or English Literature and so chose to do Art Foundation to figure myself out. If by the end I decided to do art, then woohoo, and if I decided to do English then the year wouldn’t have been a waste.

These are 2 not uncommon routes into Art Foundation, yet infinite variations exist. Maybe you just want to develop your artistic skills or want an arty ‘gap year’ before studying science or getting a job.

 What you study?
-I can only speak from experience and it’s always important to research this yourself. My foundation includes a combination of ‘skill based work’ (life drawing/printmaking/observing), taster

 projects in various art disciplines (I chose photography, ceramics, illustration and fine art) and critical and theoretical studies. In the second half of my course I’ve been able to specialize in my chosen area of fine art. Honestly there is unintended death running through my words, which doesn’t really reflect how fun, interesting and exciting my year has been up to now. I wish I could be best friends with my tutors, I have a sassy white space to dance and work in, I get giddy over my Wednesday fill of art history, and above all I’ve had time just to focus on producing art that I care about.

Can I really fanny about with artsy fartsy stuff before studying English/ Science/ Maths?
-That question assumes that a year making art is just fannying about, when in fact it’s serious stuff.
You probably already know that, and instead want to prove its worth to the skeptics around you. I was a top A-level student (whatever that means) at a sixth form that put a lot of emphasis on top universities, and so to say I was doing a ‘gap year’, let alone a gap year in art took a bit of courage. I get your feels. The simple answer is yes, you can take a year or longer ‘out’ as long as you use it wisely. I’ve been accepted to 4 top universities to study English Literature (still waiting on my last) and I believe applying a year later than my peers has only been to my advantage.
If anyone at all reads this, and still has questions, then please do just ask me them in the comments. I’d be more than happy to help, plus would love to here any other experiences of art foundation.

Sunday, 9 March 2014

363.Wishes for the full picture

There are very few negatives to being half Dutch, other than the odd quarell with the border agency and the frequent mispronuciation of my name. I can deal with those and they're far outweighed by the positives. Intrestingly I describe myself as half Dutch rather than half English and it's true that my experience of Dutchness is one of halves- specifically the good half. The choice at a Dutch breakfast table, the endless coffee and Vlaai ( a cake associated with my mothers home region Limburg), the 'ke' and 'je' of the language, and the illustrations of Fiep Westerdorp. Fieps famed 'Jip and Janneke' are hard to ignore in The Netherlands, adorning everything from tea sets to plastic belts (like the one I'm wearing above).

'Jip and Janneke'

  De Kabouter- Poortvliet

 Nijntje (also known as Miffy)- Bruna

Yet quizing the internet in hope to gain a wholer picture of Fieps work and life brought me little more than  pictures. Quizing my mum about Fiep brought only more pictures, specifically pictures by two other Dutch illustrators- Dick Bruna and Rien Poortvliet. I haven't been able to find much information on all 3 artists and so for now can only admire these charming images. Maybe the fact that these pictures are so recognisable is a greater testament to them then any nosy biography. I still can't help wishing my understanding of them wasn't only in these colourful fractured glimpses; The same goes for understanding my Dutch heritage.

Tot ziens (see you soon)

Sunday, 2 March 2014

362.Wishes to keep moving

photos that have little to do with the text below, but are just here for admiring the cuteness of this outfit 

"[mass noun] Desire or willingness to do something; enthusiasm: keep staff up to date and maintain interest and motivationOxford Dictionary

I’m not happy with the dictionary definition of motivation. Its got too much to do with mindset and not enough to do with moving. Sitting close by to motivation are motion and motor, words that seem to better describe my understanding of motivation. Now I realise this blog is fairly strong evidence of my lack of movement, yet I’m hoping that I’m starting to change. Actively change. Moving in a new direction. Not least so I can get into and survive university next year, but also just so I can do the fun stuffffs and the projects harboured in my mind.

Here’s a little list of things that are helping me but might help you and might sound preachy, I’m sorry, ok (seriously though, I understand that I have a lot of privileges that make self motivation easier for me, like not having to pay any bills for one):-

  • Understanding oneself (ooooh, one must delve deep into ones inner self) Trying to ask questions about why you procrastinate, why you’re not motivated, what sort of routines suit you, what environments do you work best in. In my case, instead of beating myself up about my poor mindset, I realised that doing stuff didn’t have anything to do with how much I wanted to do it, but about putting clear processes and shedules into place.
  • Which brings me onto schedules (ewww). I have a weekly schedule that stays the same, and includes time blocks for the different work, projects, and playtime I want. So that includes the stuff I have to do, the stuff I want to do, and the hours that I don’t want to be restricted to schedule. The second most useful thing I’ve done over the past half year has been to make daily schedules before I go to bed, based on the more vague hour blocks of my weekly schedule. Though scheduling seems yucky and restrictive (especially when I always wanted to be that free spirited spontaneous artist person), it is actually intensely freeing as it removes stress and means that free time becomes real free time, rather than free time spent feeling guilty about something you SHOULD be doing.
  • Sassy people who will work with you.(yay) This has to be most important change I’ve made since 2013, and is the reason I’m even typing this right now. Me and Charlotte have been setting ourselves a program of weekly challenges, culminating in a skype Sunday review in which we discuss the challenges we’ve faced and how we can overcome them in the next week. Alongside a few other challenges, I have to blog weekly from now until Easter whilst she is works towards making a short film.

So, if you’re out there, I’ll see you in a weeks time.