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Guest Blogger – Valerie Stein

October 7, 2010

My current design work as a Level 4 design student at the Gail Harker Creative Studies Center is an exploration of the textures of Moorish architecture. I’m fascinated by the aging process of stone as it fragments, pits and crumbles from an underlying structure. This serves as inspiration for my work. 

I use a sketchbook to make pencil drawings as I first focus on an architectural element to study. This is an exercise in practicing observation; attention to shading, texture and detail all contribute a deeper understanding of the form of my object of study. I learn about its structure, and really understand the logic of what may remain as pieces erode away.

Sketchbook pages are also used to zoom in on texture. I experiment with the effects of different media to express the essence of my focus; whether it’s a cracked, crumbling or glazed surface I want to explore, I freely play with ideas to communicate that feeling for which I’m looking.

My other work centers around working drawings; I record ideas about construction or technique with diagrams and notes as ideas for solving the practical problems of making a piece come together.

The sketchbook is a vital tool for me. As I begin to experiment with an idea, I might spend many hours in it, recording and playing and making observations. I can then refer back to what I’ve done and begin to make decisions about which direction an idea will go.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. October 7, 2010 11:56 pm

    It is really helpful to see other students’ notebooks. I hope that you will continue to show more notebook pages, and also pictures of how ideas develop in notebooks, from start to a project.


  1. Experimentation | Fabulous Fiber

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