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Week 10 (11th - 15th Jan)

Monday 11th January

-What "practice" means to me

A "practice" to me is an encompassing term which describes one's work and all aspect that relate to it; the idea generation, influences, experiments, developments, outcomes and future plans. I think this because of the contexts that I've heard the words used in.

The awareness of this, however, makes me rethink the significance of enjoyable things I do, that I don't really consider being related to my work, such as baking, cooking, DIY skin-care and hair-care, mainly. They're all enjoyable to me, and the enjoyment I feel is very similar to that which I feel when I'm producing art, so I wonder how they're that different in the end.

Tuesday 12th January

If the continuous making of art is about problem-solving, I'd say that my problem as an artist is how to convey explicit themes, feelings and ideas subtly and implicitly. I enjoy being in the background; doing things successfully when the expectation was not there; being a bit like a lamp in the dense fog; doing more than was expected. The desire for subtlety is to establish a quiet, invisible environment (one that I'm comfortable in, for some reason) then make it one that commands attention -- one that can't be ignored.

I want to address the boundary between the invisible and the visible, the intangible and the tangible; that is familiar with that which is unfamiliar (but known of). In doing so, I hope to get to know myself better and understand who I am more, away from who I think I'm expected to be.

Wednesday 13th January

I didn't have much to pick out from the text above, hence the mind map is sparse, consisting of almost entirely direct quotes. There were lots of words I didn't know the meanings of, and the sentences didn't fully flow in a way that was comprehensible to me, so I was a bit stuck.

Going back to my "practice", I hope to develop a regular way of working and reflecting using by setting myself specific goals each week:

- to have learnt something new

- to have tried a new technique

- to have taken a risk of some sort (done something I was reluctant to do)

- to have made a "bad painting" (in terms of what "bad" means to me)

- to have shown my work to a peer

- to take a "bad" painting and turn it into a "good" one

- to have watched an artist interview

- to have seen a new exhibition

- to have discovered an "artwork of the week"

In terms of ensuring regular reflection, I intend to reflect on my work at the end of each day.

I am writing this on Monday 1st March, trying to fill in some gaps.

Thursday 14th January

I've been thinking about my 'scribble drawings' and why I do them. I like to try new things, experiment and challenge myself, so I don't really understand why there are some things I do again and again, such as the cloud paintings, the scrunched paper and the scribble drawings. I approach them as though for the first time. The final work isn’t that different from the former one, but I'll do it again.

I think maybe the process of making the work does more for me than the outcome? I find it relaxing painting clouds, progressively scrunching the paper and shading alternate segments in my scribble drawings. Unlike my experimental, "try something new" or "don't think just do" works, I know what I'm doing and I know roughly what the completed work will look like. I guess I find it playful; I can get quite immersed in the process and pleased with the appearance of the works, without much effort. It’s relaxing and therapeutic. I make them again and again, a bit like making the same meal for breakfast day after day, in a sense.

I'm also wondering what these repetitive, thoughtless works have in common. I'm finding that they’re all monochromatic and they all convey an expanse; a vastness. I wonder what I'm trying to communicate when my go-to form of expression is to convey a vastness. Am I subconsciously trying to convey that I'm full of more ideas than I can express? I'm not sure, as I often scrunch when I have no ideas. Am I communicating spiritually without me realising? I've always felt that when I worked without thinking, I was more able to let God work through me. One of my most memorable examples of this are the works in the "Somehow…Unconsumed" series:

I worked and worked, then interpretation came later.

In the case of scribbles, scrunches and clouds, there is no deliberate depth that I'm trying to convey; no symbolism, no indirect meaning. What unites them, and even what links them to my works on water (also a theme a frequently return to) is the idea of an expanse. But I am limited. So the limitlessness being conveyed externally is maybe a message from the limitlessness inside. Maybe this is God speaking through me in a way that I can't yet understand. Maybe this is art from me to others and also to me, because I don't really get why I make the same things over and over. It goes against my usual approach. If these works were indeed God trying to speak to me, I would think that it was a reminder to me that He was limitless, boundless, ungraspable and therefore able…in ever sense of the word? I, Temitope, exist in this expanse, as a small spec maybe; I'm in it and not outside of it. Given attention not denied it. Recognised not ignored…?

And truly, you can never fully capture an expanse, so maybe this is why I keep making the same works again and again - maybe.

Friday 15th January

I prefer working on scribble drawings on a small-scale. A3 is becoming a bit tedious. I've been working on it for 3 days and want to move on now, but don't want to do so until it is completed. The process is more fun as a short exercise, perhaps more therapeutic than stimulating. Now, it feels a bit like a chore, though now I realise I only like the way it looks once complete. As a work in progress, it's a mess. It makes the eyes dart across the paper and not really settle on anything. It's busy and there isn't anything to draw you in; your eyes just follow the lines sporadically, going back and forth and up and down.

I desire for my works to survive the brief glance, to capture the audience's attention for a length of time almost comparable to that which I've spent producing the work. To try to see how the work has formed; to take it apart, almost. I like doing this when I observe art, so that I can learn new techniques through the analysis. I love to learn and, I suppose, am always seeking inspiration. The busyness of the incomplete scribble drawing is uncontrolled; like a blur but not in the way I like. Up until this point, I didn't think there were any blurs I didn't like. The busyness of the incomplete drawing, to me, offers no inspiration. It's hard to take from something that is moving constantly. Hence, inspiration perhaps is hard to grasp, and that might be why I only like the work in its completed form.

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