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Artist research pages


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Guidance on producing high quality artist research for A level and GCSE art & design students.

Published in: Art & Photos
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Artist research pages

  1. 1. Artist research pages This work is an important part of your project; high quality contextual research enables you to pick up marks in AO1 and supports your development in the other assessment objectives
  2. 2. Choose an artist related to your own project (similar theme) & introduce Martin Parr is a photographer who has produced work on the theme of food. He also photographs people and places. I am interested in his work food photography as it relates to my own project. Martin Parr, Common Sense (cup of tea), Photograph, 1995 Martin Parr was born in Surrey in 1952 and he is still working as a photographer today. He is interested in people’s everyday lives and often takes photos of people going about their usual business – like eating food or going on holiday. He also takes photos focusing on the objects in people’s homes. I have chosen these photographs by Marin Parr to compare because the subject is similar. Both are close-up shots of everyday food or drink. In the background of each, Parr uses a pattern to contrast with main subject, though with the cup of tea the pattern is more plain and regular. The cup of tea seems very British because of the cup and saucer, but the doughnut has Japanese writing on the paper so it hints at another culture.Martin Parr, Tokyo, Japan, 1998
  3. 3. Martin Parr, Last Resort, photographs, 1985 Include close analysis of at least 1 imageStart by asking yourself key questions – write your initial thoughts in rough then write up later... •What is eye catching about this image? •Does the image remind you of your own experiences? •How could you describe the mood? •What do you think the artist wants us to think about the image? Why? There are compositional tools which artists use to create a particular impression with their work. Consider how the artist has used these: colour, pattern, texture, shape, repetition, light, tone, line For instance: Are there patterns or shapes which have been repeated? Does the artist show textures? What is the effect?
  4. 4. Martin Parr, Last Resort, photographs, 1985 Close analysis of an image The shiny surface of the counter reflects the light and looks greasy There are many repeated heads, making the photograph look busy and crowded You can see lots of different expressions of the customers – none of them seem aware that the photo is being taken All the faces fit into a narrow section of the photograph and the rest of the picture is quite plain so the viewer focuses on the people There are people of all different ages here, like a cross section of society, but all of them seem to be white The photograph is taken from the perspective of the person behind the counter – so we feel almost like we are in the picture – is this woman looking at us? The main colours you see are variations on skin tones so the photo has a kind of fleshy, sunburn and holiday atmosphere
  5. 5. Martin Parr, Last Resort, photographs, 1985 Close analysis of an imageRemember: you are not being graded on your spelling, but getting it right shows attention to detail Try and use appropriate vocabulary for key ideas and techniques. Do not use these words (unless you really need to!): *Unique *Bold *Random You can use internet research to help you but always put this into your own words or quote and note the source However you present them, always make sure your notes are legible! Short notes or bullet points are often better
  6. 6. Wayne Thiebaud, Confection, painting, 1962 Comparison with another artist Martin Parr, GB. England. North Yorkshire. Scarborough. From British Food. 1995. Confection: • Painting • Side view • Laid out in side view • Ice creams look almost like sculptures British food: • Photograph • Taken from above • Some parts out of focus • Does not look very appetising • Subject matter is the same • Interest in shadows • Plain background Add your own opinions and explain how this could develop your own work…
  7. 7. Your own response to their work Martin Parr, GB. England. From 'British Food'. 1995 Create your own artwork in response to what you have learnt about the artist. For instance, for Martin Parr you could… • Photograph your dinner every day for a week • Produce a set of photographs of your plate throughout a meal (starting with a full plate and ending with an empty one) • Show how you can enhance the colour working in Photoshop to create more saturated images
  8. 8. • Parr was influenced by his grandfather who was an amateur photographer. • Growing up in Surrey (England), he decided he wanted to become a photographer aged 14. • He often uses close-up compositions which rely on using a macro lens on his camera. About the artist Parr in 2014 Include a picture of the artist if you want, but it is not necessary Focus on relevant information which will enhance your understanding of the work Consider the technical aspects of how images are createdDescribe characteristics of the artist’s work
  9. 9. Historical context (include dates) The fundamental thing I'm exploring constantly is the difference between the mythology of the place and the reality of it Martin Parr Look for relevant quotes by the artist to include Include information on the historical context where relevant
  10. 10. Your turn now… Remember; this is guidance not hard and fast rules – most important is that you express your own thoughts and ideas and show your analysis skills