BAMS – Medal project – Colour/ring sketchPosted: November 15, 2014
After having shown my sketches to various people it became apparent that they didn’t really understand what they were looking at, and what the shading represented. I added watercolour over the sketch in order to hopefully make it clearer what the medal will look like with the polished and unpolished areas. I also realised that I hadn’t given much thought to the edge of the medal and what it would look like, and have been thinking about the idea of a ring of contrasting colour such as silver (but possibly made of pewter as it is far more inexpensive and is available to us in uni, rather than silver which is expensive and I have never worked with). I have had a lot of problems with the idea of an edge with this medal, as it fundamentally separates the two sides of the medal which are supposed to express touch, and I am unsure what to do with the edge that can tie the two sides together cohesively. A ring around the edge at least reaffirms the idea that they are separate, seeing as I can’t escape that fact I can at least take it into account in the design. I also think a ring brings a sense a of closure and solidity to the medal, giving it borders and making it self contained, and it is something I have admired in many other medals I have looked at. This was an idea that I played around with in early ideas for my medal, looking at rings of different sizes and thicknesses. While I did very much like the look of these designs, I felt they separated the sides of the medal and made it seem like a less like an organic form and more like a picture in a frame, and then didn’t reconsider the idea of a ring once the medals moved down a more three dimensional route.
I expect this is largely influenced by my early research into medals looking at Heidi Hinder and Chloe Shaw, both of which I was introduced to previously in my first year of university, and I think I was so captivated by their work that it has stuck with me in my mind ever since
Many medals with rings also use this as a platform for text, which while I like, I think it’s on the of the factors which put me off the idea of a ringed medal originally. I find the idea of putting text on my work extremely intimidating, as for some reason I feel I am more likely to be judged on the words that I have written than the object itself. The challenge of trying to write something meaningful, yet short and concise enough to fit onto a medal, which also artistically and perhaps even poetically expresses the concept which you are trying to express is in my mind no small task. Another fear of mine in this area is that there is a high risk of sounding “pretentious”, which would then completely undermine and devalue the rest of the work. Another route with text is to take a quote, but I think this works best when you take a quote as your starting point in the project and form the object around it. Not only this, but there is also the issue of what you quote, whether it is recognisable or niche, and there is still always the risk of sounding pretentious. Because of this, I think if I do add a ring to my medal it most likely won’t include text unless I manage to resolve these issues by finding or creating something strong and fitting enough to dismiss my other worries.