Preminary study 2 – Bringing Forth a World practice

Bringing Forth A World is a highly recommended exercise to run before attempting a main piece. It is recommended for people somewhat confident with value study exercises. If you do not feel ready, then continue with value study exercises until you have some confidence. It is important to review the Bringing Forth a World presentation on Zoom and the PDF before attempting this.

You will need a printer, thick stock paper, fixative, wide flat brush, acrylic color, tempera grassa and fine painting brushes for this exercise.

The purpose of this exercise is to develop your capacity at ‘subcreation‘ and ‘world-building’, elements Tolkien defined as qualities of ‘enchantment‘.

  • Choose Image
  • If you do not ‘like’ the images – just remember its an exercise to do to learn things. Think of it like a discipline. I used antique images. If you don’t want antique images, use photoshop to make a collage of images that you do want to use. It should be black and white and a bit crazy like the images I am providing.
  • Print out your chosen image on thick stock paper – it can be A3 or A3.
  • Test if your printer ink runs if you brush water over it. If it runs, use fixative. Or take to copy shop and get them to make inkjet prints on card.
  • Masking tape all edges to a piece of card or drawing board.
  • If ink is relatively stable with water, wash an acrylic wash of red irox oxide, or burnt sienna, or burnt umber acrylic over the picture so you have effectively rendered an imprimatura over the ink designo (design). It should be a deep mid-tone like your value studies.
  • Let dry. Review if it needs second coat or not.
  • Prepare tempera grassa titanium white for painting.

Now here is the actual challenge.

  • Each collage is a complex of possibilities. The scale, direction of light, the logic of the painting is scrambled, but there are different possibilities and worlds that may be brought out.
    *After reading the ‘Bringing Forth a World’ – review carefully the Axioms, such as ‘where is the light coming from’ and ‘foreground, midground, background’ distinguished with the principle of atmospheric perspective.
  • If you do not understand what I am talking about, you need to review the Zoom meeting and read the PDF materials again.
  • If you still do not understand, then contact me with your questions. It may be a bit abstract to begin with.
  • What we want to do is APPLY as many of these principles to the chaotic possibilities inherent in this image.
  • For instance CHOOSE A DIRECTION OF LIGHT, (its not a quiz that you get the right answer from by trying to figure out the image, you have to choose for yourself and make it so). It could be coming from top left, bottom right, behind, or from the front. You decide and then you try to render the image like you would a value study by imagining all the forms you want to bring out as being illuminated by the light source.
  • Try to decide what the background layer is, and treat the values darker or lighter than the midground. Decide what you would like to be the midground, and treat it differently than foreground. Follow the axioms of the Bringing Forth A World document.
  • You do not have to use just WHITE but its a good way to begin. You could also use the same tone as the imprimatura to simplify some of the stuff you see, and also use a DARK tone.
  • See examples below of finished ‘Bringing forth a World’ exercises to imagine the possibilities.