Over the past week and a half I have been working on building up the portrait images for my second Computer Art 2 project. At this point the basic directions for each image is, with one exception, set in stone. At this point in the process I thought that I ought to share my current drafts with you all and see what you think so that I can consider your comments as I continue to finalize the portraits in the next week or so.
For the Sustainability Portrait all I have done is put a drawn version of the SJU Sustainability leaf logo as the centerpiece with the first names of the staff on the four sides. I plan to finish this portrait by adding things that refer to the themes of the other four portraits within the four corner quadrants that are currently empty. I may well put in a background pattern or image, but will figure that out right near the end of work on these images.
For my own portrait I chose the theme of energy use/conservation. All the required elements of this image are in place, but there is still lots of work to be done on the image. As this was the first image I worked on it showed me the way I intend to build the other human portraits. The people will be in the drawn style, but a decent amount of the objects surrounding us will be taken from photos I take.
The portrait of Jacob Saffert follows the theme of water conservation/shorter showers. Much of the objects in this image are final, but I have a lot to consider especially surrounding the details ion the tiled background and the way to depict a closed shower curtain while that layer still being adequately transparent so the shower itself can be seen. This image draws on photos of a shower from a place in Austria that were taken a decade ago. I didn’t like the way that the showers in Benet Hall or the shower at home in St. Paul would turn out as parts for this image, so I went and dug into the old photos from my many trips to Austria since I knew some of them had photos from which I might be able to draw out more interesting/simple shower parts.
The portrait of Stephen Katz uses the theme of recycling. This image will be a bit simpler than the previous two, having really just two objects outside of the portrait itself. The first of these that I put in was the recycling symbol in the upper right. I originally wanted to make it look like it was part of the background wall, but decided that I preferred leaving it black but applying filters to make it softer. The recycling bins in the lower left are a photo of the recycling bins we use at home that I took over Long Weekend. At first I wanted to use the recycling containers found in the Quad and other places on campus, and still might in the end, but I’m using the ones from home initially because they’re a little simpler and maintain the “standard” blue color for recycling containers. The wooden enclosures may fit better with the chosen wall background, so I’ll try with both and choose which to go with later on.
Finally, the portrait of Brandon Dorsey will follow the theme of using stairs over elevators, and I may work in a one other sustainability suggestion that we need to emphasize in the office’s work anyway. Or I may only emphasize that other thing the office must educate students on, and not do anything regarding stairs, we’ll see. This portrait I haven’t started adding objects to yet, and aside from a photo of stairs taken somewhere (if I go that route at all) will likely by almost entirely in the drawn style. We’ll see in the next week what decisions I make regarding this last image.
You will notice that across the four human portraits our mouths and eyes are done with exactly the same drawn stylization. This is one emphasis for visual unity and consistency. Other visual unifications may come into being as I work on completing this series of sustainability office portraits. Upon completion of these images, if not sooner, I will post them here on my blog. As a class we will also curate a web gallery of all our portraits, for which I will post a link once that stage of the project is finished. As the SJU Office of Sustainability, we are considering where we may use the portraits I am making within official communications of the office, so my portraits probably will be on the official website of the office, or in a newsletter or poster, at some point as well. As always, I’m happy to receive whatever suggestions and other comments you leave here. They will be read and considered as I work further on this project.