Discovering new art media: Thoughts from the BFA students

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Friday, July 17th, 2015

The current exhibition in PCA&D’s gallery, Selected Artworks from the BFA Program at PCA&D, features a selection of outstanding artwork created by our rising junior and senior BFA students. A wide variety of media are represented including digital and hand-painted illustration, sculpture, painting, printmaking, photography and graphic design.

This is the second post in a series where these students talk about their art. Today eleven art students from PCA&D discuss learning about different media.

Have you discovered anything interesting about the type of media you use that you didn’t know before, or have you discovered a new media that you never thought you would be using?

Samantha Bowen Illustration’17: My preferred mediums have always been watercolor, charcoal, ink, and digital (Adobe Photoshop with use of the Wacom Bamboo tablet). Recently though, I was able to get the Cintiq Companion for digital work, and it has inspired me greatly in the possibilities for what art I feel capable in creating. It has enhanced my artistic process and opened new doors and new ideas for art making.

Alexis Suplee, Fine Art ’16: Over the years the type of media I use has changed but not too dramatically. I usually go for found objects and mixed media pieces. The media I tend to use can be either trash picked or just simply bought from the store. My feelings for different media has changed, such as, I would rather bring a found object back to life than buy it from a store. Even some of the house paint I have used have been lucky finds.

Emily Coughlin, Graphic Design ’16: I’ve discovered that it’s harder than it looks! You can create a logo in 3 minutes, or the process could take months. The best work comes from the most time spent on something. Not that I thought this would be easy, but all the time I get reactions from people that Graphic Design is a business-like major and I’m only making what people tell me to make, but that’s not it at all. It’s really a science, and you have to think about how people are going to react to a certain logo you create, or how you design a brochure, or how users are going to interact with the website you build.

Rebecca Lerch, Illustration ’16: Throughout the junior year, we, as a class, were challenged to re-assess the tools we use for our work and to modify our technical processes to better understand what media would best fit our developing styles. Personally I have found that a healthy foundation of traditional watercolor and ink, when paired in tandem with the many textural capabilities digital media has to offer, can result in an eclectic yet believable balance between the two processes which I plan to explore further.

Alexandria Bonner, Fine Art ’16: Birch panel can be gessoed, sanded, and scraped with glass to create a smooth reflective surface. It provides an ideal surface for thin layers of paint.

Kevin Mancuso, Graphic Design ’16: I discovered a new media that I never thought I would use, that media is Motion graphics. Motion graphics changed the way I approach designing my artwork. It taught me how to strategically layout everything.

Sarah Pietrowski, Photography ’16: I have discovered that I enjoy using film cameras, especially Holgas. Prior to my freshman year I never really used film, just all digital so it was fun using the film and learning how to process it and print from it.

Katherine Stratis, Illustration ’16: I’ve recently realized that art isn’t just something you draw or paint- it can be how you influence others and make them smile. Over the past few months I’ve been working as a children’s entertainer and doing improv storytelling. A lot of the stories I tell are directly related to things I normally would want to illustrate. I can definitely say without a doubt that this will influence my senior work.

Selected Works exhibiting artists

Avery Rose, Graphic Design ’16: I am constantly discovering new ways of working and new medias to use. Recently I have discovered Augmented Reality which has opened up a whole new and exciting creative outlet.

Amber Ream, Graphic Design ’16: I have found that a computer can be used to create different types of artwork and that you don’t necessarily have to be a fine artist to be an artist. I have discovered that I can create art in my own way and make a career out of it. Even though most of my artwork consists of digital media, I have also found other methods of creating different kinds of artwork such as stained glass mirrors and etched glass. These different techniques have made me think differently about the way some artwork is done and has made me appreciate other media as well.

Maurice Butler, Fine Art ’15: Gouache is one of those media that made me think a lot different in retrospective of acrylic painting. Gouache and Acrylic go hand and hand with the same use and result of painting. But you can always work back into the Gouache painting a lot more than Acrylic when it’s dried out. I tend to like working back into paintings to get more depth and ranged so having that concept of working really fits into my style.

Read these students’ comments on what art means to them and where they get their ideas in last week’s blog.