Tuesday, 2 July 2013


After 16 weeks of workshops, the FINAL SHOW is finally upon us. For more information see invite below:

In the meantime check out this brilliant performance art piece by one of the stars of the project Sienna. Not only does she act with aplomb, but she wrote and recorded the music for this piece.

Please make an effort to come down to the show and support the artists with disabilities, as they open their debut show. C u in a bit!!!! 

Sunday, 2 June 2013

Meet the Artists

Time to meet the young artists who are working on the Impressability project! These portraits below were taken by the DM (digital media) artists. Some of the subjects were shot whilst bouncing on a mini tramp. The jumping motion helped to create animated expressions, that are a departure from the staid expressions that we find in traditional portraiture. The majority  of people become extremely self conscious when a camera is pointed in their direction. They immediately visualise the picture the photographer is attempting to take, and try and compensate for what they believe are their flaws. The jumping motion helps to liberate them from this thought process, and returns a modicum of control back to the photographer.

Floyd & Blake

Nicole & Steve

Alex & Tiana 

 Jordan & Siena

 Tim & Aran

Monday, 27 May 2013

Developing works for Exhibition

With the workshops now at the half way mark, the creation of the final works for the exhibition begin in earnest.  The DM (digital media) artists will be developing a Hero/Avatar character with a name, back story and a costume. Each artist will then will wear the costume, and become the subject of a portrait shoot. The portraits will then be displayed as large scale prints in the exhibition. 

The first step in the development of the characters was a 'brainstorming' exercise, whereby the artists listed their likes, dislikes, interests, and heroes. These words were then used as search phrases in Google images. Images representing each word were collated, and used to a create a mood board. This mood board is the foundation for the character, and will be used to develop the name, back story and more importantly the costume.

A similar process is taking place in the PA (performance art) workshop. Through improvisation the artists are developing exaggerated versions of themselves, as theatrical archetypes. The focus is on creating strong silent characters, and nuanced movement. The characters created all represent some kind of emergence, and relate to the young people coming in to adulthood, and their emergence as artists.

Movement, posture, breathing exercises and visualisation were used to further explore the characters. They talked about the type of music they would use to present their work, and how they will furnish the "rooms" in which the work would be displayed. The intricacies of the costumes were also discussed.

Over in the MM (mark making) workshops the experimentation continued. The artists experimented by making instinctual adjustments and movements to their stance and position as they marked. This experiment was in turn, preparation for an exciting collaboration with a group of NAISDA dancers. More on that next time... 

Wednesday, 15 May 2013

Bushwalk to Bulgandry Aboriginal Rock Carvings

This week all of the artists were treated to a very special visit to the Aboriginal site of the Bulgandry Rock Carvings. A short  walk through the bush, followed a wooden footpath to a large  rock platform that displayed a variety of well preserved  Aboriginal rock carvings. Bulgandry is actually the name of the ancestral warrior hero depicted in one of the carvings on this site. 

We were given our own personal tour by the lovely Gabi Duncan, who spoke to us about the beliefs and traditions of the Aboriginal Dream time Culture. Gabi also taught us a few choice Aboriginal dance moves, and spoke of the significance of Aboriginal names. Its all in the vid below. Check it!

Monday, 6 May 2013

Physical Comedy, Mime and the acting techniques of the Silent movie era.

The PA (performance art) team, was the focal point this week, as they explored physical comedy, mime and the acting techniques of the silent movie era. Nicole, Steve and Sienna performed some very powerful and also funny silent improvisations. Participants showed great dedication and focus and were very open and willing to try everything. Furthermore, the team discussed creating characters using parts of their own identities, and how they could bring these to life by using costumes and movement.

The DM (digital media) group were set the task of documenting the PA workshop, but also involved themselves in some of the ad hoc performances.

Wednesday, 1 May 2013

Still life drawing & logo design

At the beginning of the project the artists were each issued with an 'identity box', and were asked to use the box to collect objects that were imbued with personal significance. The objects were put to use in both the DM (digital media) workshops and also the MM (mark making) workshops. 

In the DM workshops the artist were further exploring the theme of identity by creating their own personal logos. The artists were set the task of taking a 'still life' photograph of one of the objects from their identity box, and then incorporating that into their logo. Here are some of the results below...

Meanwhile, in the 'MM' workshop the artists, explored their visual language through both experimental, and conventional mark making. Their 'identity box' objects were used as a starting point. Aaron's used conventional drawing methods, to recreate his shell, which resulted in a stunningly original charcoal sketch.

Chris worked with more experimental methods, by tracing around his object and repeating the shape to create a beautiful pattern effect. 

Sunday, 21 April 2013

Character development & Abstract forms of expression

At the beginning of this workshop the artists were divided into 3 separate teams, according to their artistic inclinations. From this point onwards, each team will be led by an 'artist in residence', and will produce a final work using the medium that the 'artist in residence' specialises in. Gemma took the 'Performance Art' team, Angelo the 'Digital Media' team, and Kiera the 'Mark making & drawing' team.

In the DM (digital media) workshop, there was a movement away from the literal, narrative based forms of visual language, toward the more Abstract, Surreal styles of expression. Angelo built a basic photography studio set up: 

Grey colourama background
Two light sources - Key light being flash head with a soft box,  lighting the face. Second light, flash head with umbrella, lighting background.

Angelo then directed the artists as they shot portraits of each other. The aim was too try and capture interesting shapes and poses, as opposed to 'telling a story'.

Towards the end of this workshop, the DM team collaborated with Gemmas PA (performance art) team, where the artists were working on character development, with the use of props and costumes.

Sienna moved over from the PA team, and put in a star turn on the photography set, creating hauntingly beautiful shapes and poses (see below). 

Meanwhile over in the 'mark making' team, the artists created drawing tools from materials such as weeds, sticks, threads, masking tape, sponges and traditional materials such as graphite sticks and powder, Charcoal sticks and powder.

The marking tools where then used to great effect, with stunning results. This process encouraged the artists to explore their visual language through mark making with drawing tools that pushed their control over drawing implements.