Back to college

I need to start working on my college project. I’ve given myself time to recover from a bad cold, but I can’t ignore it. I need to produce a portfolio of images and a report to go alongside it. I’ve decided to write about the history of dragons in illustrations. Their images in world history, moving forward in time to medieval art and then the present day including their appearances in literature and film. My portfolio will be illustrations and text for a children’s book exploring colour and pattern alongside an adventure. I hoe it works out.

Chinese dragon

A dragon 🐲 in the Chinese style. Head and tail are large. The body thin and snake or worm like with a sinuous shape. Four legs, clawed feet. Apparently Imperial dragons had five claws and normal dragons had four.

I once made a dragon bowl in pottery class. I’d made the bowl in a mold and I carved a dragon like this inside. I gave it five claws and toes on each foot and it was carved to show the scales. I had it biscuit fired and it survived the heat. No cracks or blemishes. Then I glazed it. I can’t remember what colours, but I looked forward to seeing the result after the Christmas break (about thirty years ago). Unfortunately when we came back it was missing! The consensus was it must have been stolen! Soon after that I left the pottery class because I was so disappointed.

Wordless cartoon

I can’t remember the story behind this or whether there was a prompt. I drew it last year. I had to draw something with four panels for my college course. It starts with someone by a campfire. The fire goes out so they go to get more wood, But instead of it all being sticks, a snake, which had been asleep wakes up. I like the simple style I drew it in and the minimal images in it. But now I look back at it I worry that the snake would have been burned or might have woken up before being put on the embers. Even with a simple story you have to be aware of consequences!

Dragon 🐲 head

Drawn from my imagination. Half a dragons head drawn in tippex correction fluid on black cartridge paper. Mirrored in a photo edit, then stitched together as a whole head. My first Dragon of 2022. I’m just wondering when the Chinese year of the dragon is. Their images are amazing. I need to find out about their history x

Painting from college

This is a painting I did when I was about twenty. I was at college doing my fine art degree and I had recently met my then boyfriend (now hubby). This was in my small studio at college. The painting has been on the wall for several years. I painted him sitting on a chair with his feet up. He hasn’t changed too much.

Outside there was snow lying on the hills above the city. You could just see the roofs of the college across the road. The rooms we worked in were reasonably light. I remember the studios upstairs had parquet flooring. It was a different world from what I came from. I’m glad I went.

Dragons get everywhere

Oh I do like creating a dragon now and then. I decided to rotate my sky drawing and then add a bit of symmetrical drawing over the top. I think the result is quite cute.

It’s getting towards the end of the day, week, year and I’m looking at some of my older stuff. I might have to delete some of the earlier work. Memory on computers and phones seems to run out faster than humans!

dragon again

copyright Christine Mallaband-Brown

I’m still working towards my final major project at college. The project is a picture book with patterned pages on one side of the two page spreads and possibly strongly contrasting images like this one on the other side. Im thinking of trying out linocutting as a method of producing them ( could get very messy) or perhaps a photoshop technique I’ve never used before? All part of ideas generation…Probably both to show that I’m trying to widen my skills. I also need to resolve where the text will sit…. I might even get it published. I think time is not dra-gon-ing on! Its going too quick!

Making a Zine

Sixty four pages (32 images, 32 text) later. More glue and parcel tape than I can cope with. The parcel tape is white and has fragile written on it in big red letters.

I started by taping 32 a6 cards together with parcel tape, then gluing down an image and plain paper alternating with each other. My measurements were a bit off so some prints overlapped each other. The result works but is messy. I wrote on the blank sheets vaguely telling a story but it needs doing properly.

We will see what happens.

Shiny

1.23am on Wednesday morning. I’m messing about with filters to create a scaly pattern. The inks were metallic and I tried to enhance the shinyness of it. I mirrored the image four times. Yet another pattern for my current college project. One problem I face was that all the colours are quite similar and of a medium tone, it was difficult to distinguish between dark and light areas.