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Changing the Frosted Green Perspex To a Frosted Clear Perspex
April 2014
Ellyn Abraham

As I was unhappy with the frosted green perspex, I decided to evaluate what it was that I wanted these framed pieces to do. Naturally, due to the nature of the plastic in comparison to the tracing paper - the perspex will translate the content in a far more literal and less ambiguous way to the paper, as the content isn’t being distorted as much. This is something important to consider in regards to colour, as ambiguity is central to the work and the colour of the plastic can drastically affect how visible the contained materials are. 

In a similar way to how the red tracing paper pieces (http://ellynabraham.tumblr.com/post/80402155236) visually separated the background from the content rather than blurring the two, I think the colour of the perspex is drawing attention to the plastic in a way that makes it become a separate aspect to the constructed frame, rather than being perceived as part of the object and therefore the image. 

I have therefore decided to replace the frosted green perspex with a sheet of clear frosted perspex. I believe that this perspex still distorts the content to a certain extent, however without being overly present visually and therefore works more successfully. Almost immediately the clear perspex transformed the frames entirely. Although the same processes are employed in both the tracing paper and the perspex pieces, I don’t want them to be perceived in the same way. These are two entirely different objects despite being linked through the same construction processes. I believe that the clear frosted perspex has enabled me to construct this tension between the tracing paper and the perspex pieces more clearly.

The Issue of Mirror Plating My Work
April 2014
Ellyn Abraham

How the work is hung has been an ongoing consideration. Initially I used mirror plates which distracted from the work entirely and took away from the element of uncertainty with a very fixed and present metal plate. When I worked on the canvases, I was able to cut a hole into the back of them and hook them onto the wall using screws. This however isn’t practical for my current work as it is no longer made of canvas, but rather MDF. 

I explored various methods of hanging without having anything visibly on show, and came across these flush wall mounts. These have enabled me to hang the work without having it compromised by distracting metal plates.

fineartcsad2014:

Ellyn Abraham

Above is a link to our degree show page showcasing some of the work that’ll be on display in June. Come along!

fineartcsad2014:

Ellyn Abraham

Above is a link to our degree show page showcasing some of the work that’ll be on display in June. Come along!

jerpville: Ellyn, I found your blog through random searches on Tumblr and I became instantly enthralled. I've read each entry beginning with the oldest and find myself immersed in your fascinating search for solutions. Your engagement with your practice is to be commended very highly. Your curiosity and sense of delight at chance encounters will enable your work to thrive. Good work!! Thanks for sharing the process with us. I look forward to another update...

Wow, thank you so so much. I’m completely blown away! I write these notes primarily to myself, so it’s amazing to think that you’ve taken the time to read through my ramblings! I wish you all the best with your practice too!

A Perspex Alternative (Unfinished and Unsealed)
March 2014
Ellyn Abraham

Not only is the construction of this outcome a lot more practical (see below post) but the act of physically creating an image is also a lot more methodical and less intuitive. I think this was partly due to the colour of the perspex and partly due to the clarity of it (despite it being frosted) in comparison to the tracing paper. Initially I began by considering which materials I should place into the work, and how they reacted to the perspex (top two images). I then began to fill the frame with the various materials, fabrics and powders. However, once placed inside the frame, the glow of the green perspex began to dim. I believe that the powders must have dimmed the glow of the green as it was emptied into the frame, resulting in a very clinical and flat green. Due to this flatness, the content of the frame translates very literally and logically. We can clearly see that this is a frame made up of things that I have poured into it, whereas with the paper pieces this was obscured. In this respect, I don’t believe the piece is successful as it doesn’t explore the same sense of mystery and ambiguity as the paper pieces. However I also believe that this is partly due to the colour of the perspex, therefore I plan on exploring how the pieces work with a clear frosted perspex rather than a green. 

The Construction of a Perspex Alternative
February-March 2014
Ellyn Abraham

Along side the tracing paper outcome, I have been exploring a perspex alternative. I decided to explore both outcomes simultaneously as I am intrigued by how the same idea, constructed through different materials, can produce such a different result. I began working on this perspex outcome in February and as of yet it still hasn’t been finished. In theory, the construction of the frames for the perspex should have been simple, however I encountered  a number of difficulties along the way which complicated the construction process. 

The frames themselves are cut from a sheet of 250mm MDF as there isn’t a strong grain to the wood, meaning that once painted white the finish would be very smooth. The idea behind the perspex outcome was that it resolved the presentation based issues that had been affecting the tracing paper pieces, however in a much more practical way. There’s an almost painterly quality and a sense of mystery to the paper pieces, whereas the perspex piece is very literal and practical. I’m unsure how successful this will be in terms of my desire to explore illusion and ambiguity, however I am certainly looking forward to experimenting with this means of creating.

Attempting to Reduce the Visibility of the Frame Through Reconsidering the Construction of the Work
March 2014
Ellyn Abraham

An alternative means of resolving the issue of the frames visibility (see below post) is to reconsider how the shadow is actually being cast. As it is the shadow that is highlighting the frame of the work, I must therefore figure out a way of creating a frame which casts minimal shadow. As I had previously been using the reverse of regular canvases to work on, I have began to create my own frames. Using 2x1” wood, I was able to create a much deeper void which means that a more exaggerated sense of depth will be present in the images. Along with increasing the depth of the frame, I also increased the size of the quadrant. Increasing the size of the quadrant means that the curve of the wood is a lot more gradual. This means that light can’t hit one particularly large area, which reduces the shadow cast. To ensure no possible shadow could be cast, I also sealed all gaps in the frame to avoid any light coming through. This decision to increase the quadrant size completely changed the work and almost entirely eliminated the visible border, enabling me to enhance the illusionistic nature of the work that had previously been hindered.

Attempting to Match the Colour of the Shadow, in Order to Eliminate the Clearly Visible Frame of the White Pieces
March 2014
Ellyn Abraham

The very last issue to combat with regards to the refinement processes that I have put my work through, is the visibility of the frame with regards to the white pieces specifically. As I intend on developing the white pieces further, this is something that I need to overcome. Despite the border not being as distracting as some of the previous aspects I have resolved, it still distracts from the image and therefore in order to give the work the best possible chance, the visibility of the frame needs to be reduced.

Initially I began attempting to mix a shade that sat in between the pure white of the background and the off-white shadow cast by the edge of the frame. Mixing a shade that merged the shadow and the background meant taking into account the colours pre wrapping and how they are affected once wrapped in tracing paper. After mixing a shade which I thought might resolve this, it was apparent that I still had a long way to go. This appeared to be an extremely time-consuming and quite possibly frustrating task and so I decided to abandon this way of resolving the issue in favour of figuring out a slightly simpler way to overcome the distracting frame.

whatevart: Hey there! Really nice painting. ! I'd like to invite you to submit your original work and get a chance to be interviewed as Artist of The Month! Thank you for considering it! :)

Hi! Thanks very much, I will indeed submit some art work!

Encased Mixed MediaMarch 2014Ellyn Abraham
These pieces represent the culmination of the various refinement processes that I have been working on since my earlier blue artworks (see previous posts). There is still the issue of the visibility of the stretcher in the white image which needs resolving, as I intend on developing the white pieces rather than the darker ones - however aside from that, these works have reached a standard which I am happy to present. 

Encased Mixed Media
March 2014
Ellyn Abraham

These pieces represent the culmination of the various refinement processes that I have been working on since my earlier blue artworks (see previous posts). There is still the issue of the visibility of the stretcher in the white image which needs resolving, as I intend on developing the white pieces rather than the darker ones - however aside from that, these works have reached a standard which I am happy to present. 

Encased Mixed Media On White Background
March 2014
Ellyn Abraham

Wanting to explore what happens when an extremely light background is used - making the content appear a lot darker than in my previous experiments - I explored the use of a purely white background. Instantly, the black/blue piece next to it (see below post) appears much flatter in comparison. There appears to be a visual depth present in this lighter experiment that isn’t present in the darker pieces. Due to the nature of the colour scheme, the objects within the work are a lot more visible and seem to almost glow. I find the lighter background a lot more engaging due to the heightened sense of depth.

However, as the background in lighter, the edge of the canvas despite having the additional quadrant, is a lot more visible. I need to somehow eliminate this as the shadow cast from the form exaggerates the glowing white edges. Perhaps it is possible to paint the edges a specific shade of off-white to disguise the frame, or come up with a different way of encasing the work?

Encased Mixed Media On a Two-Tone Background
March 2014
Ellyn Abraham

I opted for a two-tone background for this piece as I wanted to explore how different colours placed in specific places effected the visual depth of the piece. Initially, I thought the colours would have a drastic effect on the image. However, once wrapped (see below post) the colours were instantly dulled down. Of course, the action of pouring white powders into it also dulled down the colour as it sticks to the painterly surface and whitens it. Despite not achieving what I had hoped a two-tone background might have - which was to inform me on how different colours affect the visual depth of the work; I have learned that in order for there to be a real difference in the feel of the work, I need to use more contrasting colours. As previously explored (see post http://ellynabraham.tumblr.com/post/80402155236) brighter colours don’t work with the work as they appear to visually separate the background and content. Therefore combining the dark shade with a bright red for example wouldn’t work. I will therefore explore how the work reacts to a contrast in background from dark to light, looking at purely white backgrounds. 

Experimenting With a Two-Tone Background
March 2014
Ellyn Abraham

I wanted to experiment with how specifically placed colours affected the overall sense of visual depth. I’m inspired by nature and science, therefore I have numerous books which I refer to as a source of visual inspiration. I came across the image on the left in an encyclopaedia. I’m really interested in the similarities between the placement of the powder in my blue pieces and the white of the photograph. There’s a lot of movement present in both the image and my work and so I decided to loosely base my two-tone experiment on the colour scheme of the image. 

As soon as I had wrapped the canvas however (right image) the colours instantly paled. I’m unsure how this might affect the image once filled, however I am excited to see what happens.

The Visibility of the Border/Frame Through the Paper
March 2014
Ellyn Abraham

The problem with using the reverse of a canvas for a frame is that the paper rests on the flat of the stretcher, which inevitably shows through the opaqueness of the tracing paper (left image). This is a real concern, especially with regards to my earlier blue canvases. The harsh line of the blue frame distracts from the uncertainty of the central content, giving it a very definite edge. This completely contrasts my desire to create a space which appears to be undetermined and ambiguous. To resolve this, I have attached quadrant to the frames (centre image) - lifting the paper further away from the flat of the stretcher. This adjustment has enabled me to create more pieces (right image) that aren’t hindered by a definite frame which distracts from the ambiguity of the work.

Eliminating the Bulges and Creases From the Work’s Surface
March 2014
Ellyn Abraham

The bulges and creases occur due to the technique I use to fill the canvases. As a range of three-dimensional objects are placed within the canvas - such as polyurethane, coarse fabrics and various papers - these objects often protrude slightly further than the frame of the canvas. This protrusion results in the bulging and creasing of the paper’s surface.

To avoid this, I need to be more selective with the objects I place inside the work. By creating specific forms and manipulating the materials used to fill the canvas, I have ensured that enough of the object protrudes without it resulting in bulges or creases. The surface of the paper is an integral aspect to the work and so ensuring that this is resolved has been crucial to the development of the work.

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