Orela Vokes

Month: August, 2012

Loose Ends

The autumn semester begins in a week and I’m feeling excited and inspired. I’m desperate to start a new art project but have decided to tackle the irritating pile of unfinished paintings that lives at the end of my bed. I’ve been putting this off for ages because I like the images/ideas too much to scrap them but just don’t know what else they need. If they’re not done by next Sunday they’ll be getting a layer of white paint and new life in a future project.

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Let’s Just Pretend…

Tree-hugger

In my last post I mentioned that trees are a favourite motif of mine. There’s just something about them that captivates me; maybe it’s the way they reflect the changing seasons or the fact that they contain many different elements: roots, branches, leaves, buds. I rarely set out to photograph trees exclusively and yet I have amassed hundreds of photos which I use as inspiration for drawings, paintings and prints.

Happy Sounds and Sights

Recently (as in only last month), I created the cover for Erik’s EP (http://open.spotify.com/artist/7dsXgJqNaoQ4Ap0ygDuIZW) and it was a much needed opportunity to get back into art after a semester concentrating on creative writing. I lugged my massive art boxes into the kitchen and when I rifled through them I found some paper that I’d dyed the last time I cooked beetroot. The natural dye had faded a little but it was still a beautiful pink, and this worked well with the planned colour scheme (a mixture of Erik’s preferences and what I thought worked best with the music). One of Erik’s few stipulations was that he wanted hearts somewhere in the image and I decided to experiment with potato printing. It was pretty tricky to carve such small heart shapes into potato but I loved the result. I tried to create patterns with the printed hearts but on the circular paper it ended up looking more like dodgy pottery designs so I began to sketch instead. I drew some trees and painted them brown, and you’ll be seeing a lot of trees on here because they’re probably my favourite things to draw and paint. I left the trees bare but printed on some hearts and the image was complete. Then it was time for some computer wizardry (AKA basic Photoshop). I’m always reluctant to use digital programs but there’s no denying how handy they are. It was at this point that I really welcomed Erik’s input, and I was reminded how enjoyable it can be to create artwork with someone else. Especially someone with good ideas who respected my decisions and kept my coffee cup full! We played around with sizes and layouts but didn’t find a suitable typeface so I wrote the title freehand. This took a lot of time and I’m pretty sure I got a little RSI but we were both very pleased with the finished cover. Erik plans to record two more EPs in the near future so stay tuned.

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