Reflective Journal Week 2, 6 Oct – 12 Oct, 2019

Developments envisaged in the previous week started the second week in Camberwell. While working on new pieces with a stable efficiency, I can’t help to notice there are only two days away from the official briefing of the first unit. Also, the very first crit is only ten days from now.

I have been experimenting with the ideal paint for the English landscape. I did not bring old materials from China; also, I would like to put a fitting end to the series of watercolour practice as well. It means I would like to push the project a step further, from both theoretical and technical aspects. I cannot tell what I should focus on for the project one since I have not been briefed yet, but I should consider how could I attract my audience with a nourishing treat of visual feast. Until the reputation could earn the human traffic in front of my display, I acknowledge visual attractiveness is the essential reason which decides the willingness for the audience to understand my idea comprehensively.

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While reproducing the sketch combined memory from last week’s trip to Cuckmere, I have collected some green paints. I am afraid that their effects were mediocre that I can only manage to maintain the old style. However, the switching of watercolour paper provided me with an exciting way of making a painting. A blurred, ambiguous scene was created. And as the side production, several drawings of the tree were produced.

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And their finished versions are:

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The selecting of colours may not be as dull as it sounds. Sometimes I do work as an artisan instead of being more artistic. It was incredibly hard for me to accept if I cannot perfect my work, especially the demonstration process. My idea is to take advantage of the fact that I have been working on these landscapes paintings before everybody else. That would give me a two-week fresh start ahead. If I can combine these two parts decently, that would allow me to:

-Squeeze out more time for preparing materials of PhD application.

-Wrap themes I haven’t finished playing with properly so I can free myself and move to something else.

-Optimise the consumption of material usage and redistribute budget for potential activities that may support my work in the future.

Nevertheless stalling a task can always be meaningless, sometimes it may even cause serious result.

The briefing on Wednesday did bring a piece of good news: there is no specification on the first project. We will need to name, set and finish the first project all on our own. Find a problem that intrigues interest, work on it; demonstrate a decent process of work decently, and convince the audience that you are capable of working out the thesis as complex as this one.

It suits my plan well, an excellent opportunity to finish what I have started and moved on to pursue the boundary of knowledge in this area.

I started to consider the reason by which my creative career over English and Spanish landscapes has been kept for more than three years. The answer leads to an unspecified fondness of the two countries. When digging the essence of the question more in-depth, it confused me what exactly about these two regions I appreciate. Should it be the culture, people, or merely the land? Maybe a sense of home? Of a place where I found no hesitate to live in?

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Reevaluations of the cultural aspect of a Chinese brought up an interesting observation result: the unique connection between people and soil.

I wrote on the sketchbook:

I guess my nostalgia feeling regarding the “second hometown” may be related to the generic desire of Chinese people: the obsession of owning a piece of land that he/she truly belongs to. Chinese people usually travel upon their vast country for wars have been waging on its soil for nearly three thousand years. Houses can be burnt, corps devastated, the ground soaked by blood, families killed. However, Chinese people always believe in the magic of land and hard-working. With a tiny piece of land, everything lost can be rebuilt, life can be regained.

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About cechenpaints

An artist, painter, illustrator based in London.