For a number of years colour has played a huge part in my work. It would often be the starting point for how I would try and communicate an idea and often where I got inspiration from artists. However since doing my foundation I seem to have diverted away from this and currently my work is all about mark-making and shape. This is something which I find great pleasure in doing as I have found a way to get across my chaotic brain, ideas and way of working. However something which is lacking is colour. Part of this could be because of I have turned to printmaking as a practice and I am still learning a lot about how to manipulate the plate. Part of this includes colour and layering this up.
It is something I am not fully comfortable with. I am very impatient and want things to work how I think they will, so I haven't yet tried much colour with my etchings. When I start my degree in September and get back into the studio this is something I want to change.
I follow a lot of people on Instagram who inspire me to use colour more within my work. Bright colours catch the eye of the viewer and often vibrancy is what draws me in to finding new work. I thought I would share some of my favourite artists whose practice combines mark-making, colour and other aspects that I want to introduce back into my work.
The first person is the wonderful Amy Hodkin. Amy is currently a student at Leeds College of Art on the Printed Textiles and Surface Design course. This is actually the course I was considering doing, the tutors are brilliant and the facilities looked amazing. However I couldn't leave Falmouth and the artistic community behind. I was first drawn to Amy's drawing of a cat which combined mark making and hints of yellow. The characterful illustrations she creates are so charming and have their own personalities which leap off the page. She has a way of being able to combine mark and colour but without the colour dominating the piece. (Black and yellow to me is a hard colour balance to get right).
She seems to make any colour combination work together. She has already developed her own style which is brilliant. She has such confidence with colour combination. This motivates me to try it more and not be so afraid if things don't work out the way I want them to.
Next is the work of:
I adore the work of these artists Maxime Prou & Adèle Favreau who combine illustration, printmaking and collage to create vibrant, abstract works. I follow their Instagram and am forever jealous of their studio and ability to create collage that appeals to such a mass audience. This is shown by having over 29,000 followers on Instagram. They have also worked with Vogue and Wanderlust just to name a few.
These works are actually screen prints. This takes the collage elements together and shows how it can be reproduced on a larger scale. They get a real balance of shape and colour that compositionally is really pleasing to look at. For me that is what is so magnetic about their work. This resonates with me because amongst the chaos of collage and shape there is this sense of balance. which is something I would like to improve in my own work. Again these are two artists who are not afraid to combine colour in new and exciting ways.
Finally this is the work of Amy Isles Freeman, who has recently graduated from Falmouth University from the Drawing Degree. She has set up her own company Wayfaring Makers which is a collective of artists who share and sell their prints. I recently purchased one of her prints because of the use of repetition and how she combines colour.
My favourite section of this print is the last row of fish, (yellow is a recurrent favourite colour of mine within work it seems, I think this is because of its vibrancy). This print is currently stuck on my wall at home. I think it is so successful because of how she has repeated the image and kept hints of the same colour throughout. All the colour combinations work harmoniously and do no clash which draws the eye around the image.
I will not let my lack of confidence with colour and the fact I haven't use it in my work for a while get to me. I am slowly learning to let my work be organic and not so tight. I think it is so important to not be so hard on myself (which I am awful at, but I'm learning).
I hope you've enjoyed this post! I would love to know who your favourite artists are and how colour inspires you.