Bella Kerr MasterClass

Neath Group

The aim for the day was to create sketchbooks in the loosest form. Bella encouraged creativity throughout the day. Sketchbooks were redesigned/ re-invented to the creators discretion. Once a series of pages/ surfaces that could be drawn onto had been placed the task of drawing 10 lines was given. Each line had to show experimentation of tone by applying pressure.

Additional pockets/ pages were added to the sketchbooks for storing items. Bella explained how an artist/ designer has an interest in everything from the smell of a room to the colour of an object. The group set out on a journey around the building with their sketchbooks and drawing materials to gather and record any interesting information they could find. As the journey reached the outside of the University the group were asked to pick up five objects that they found on the floor. Each student had been given a clear slide pocket sheet, used for storing slides in. These were handed out in order to hold any found floor items.

Using the found objects, small square black drawings of the found items were created. The small squares were collated onto one large piece of paper and a screen was made out of them. The Masterclass then entailed another learnt skill of screen printing.

Swansea Group

Bella introduced herself and spoke briefly about sketchbooks meaning more than just a surface to draw on. The group discussed the sketchbooks that they currently work in school. Rebecca said that Ystalyfera School make students work in three sketchbooks- Research, Drawing and Collage. Bella explained that her aim of the day was to get the group to create a large scale sketchbook which had the potential to become a growing project and something that the students can add to.

Due to there being a small number in the first workshop it was awfully quiet, Bella encouraged chatter by asking the group to go around the table and say what their career aspects are. Jake- artist, Rebecca & Carys- Science, Demi- tattooist, Eska – travel. As it was an open day at the University a tour had gone past and Bella had mentioned how some of the students on the course did not have plans to continue a career in art but had an interest and enjoyment from it. The Dean of the University was in the room and later pulled the Portfolio group to one side and spoke about the overlap with science and art and how they can feed into and help one another.

Bella spoke of her intentions for the Masterclass- she wanted the group to build upon existing book structures to create their own form of book. Each student was given a large piece of paper- the group were asked to use fastening and paper folding techniques to incorporate this piece into their sketchbook.

Students were asked to use their sketchbooks as a resource to gather visual and physical information during a walk around the University. Pockets were created to store found items and Bella set the task of collecting five items from the ground and placing them in these pockets.

On return to the room each student selected their most prized found object and arranged the items together to be scanned and turned into a pattern for a screen print. Tim Stokes gave a brief demonstration on creating patterns on Photoshop before taking the students to the Screen Exposure room and showing them how to expose a screen. Jake was confident and jumped at the chance of being the first to screen print- even chose the colour. Each student screen printed onto a bag which Bella explained could be used as a holder for their sketchbooks.

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