I’m really excited about the prospect of my next project which will allow me to use my writing skills learnt through English A Level to aid my artistic practice.
The question I have chosen to answer for my upcoming project is:
How can the act of visual documentation and illustration inform ecological or environmental issues?
I chose this question because for both my Foundation course and my work so far this term, I have been concentrating on experimenting and trying out new ways of working. Though this has been fun and helpful, I would now like to get ‘back to basics’ and strengthen my drawing skills, both observational and from photographs. I predict that the nature of this question will allow me to use careful detail and precision in technical drawings of plants and animals, which will be a nice change from what I’ve been doing recently.
In terms of research, being a Jersey resident I have the unique opportunity to be around diverse wildlife, including the Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust which is based in Trinity, Jersey. The organisation does much more than a normal zoo as they have a number of successful ongoing projects to protect endangered species and improve environments for animals around the world.
The man behind the organisation is Gerald Durrell who was a highly influential naturalist and writer. His most successful book, ‘My Family and Other Animals’, documents his young life as an animal enthusiast in Corfu with his family, and has been a book I’ve been a fan of since I was a child. After rereading this book, as well as his other novels and informational texts, I hope to create new illustrations for the texts in order to practise text-inspired images.
A personal link I have to both Durrell and zoology is my grandfather, Peter Crowcroft, who was one of the key pioneers in research of marsupials, a good friend of Durrell’s and also produced books about his work. His books are much more technical and scientific, but no less fascinating to read, and I hope to try to also create some images from these.
Though I’m not yet sure what form my final outcome will take, I predict that it will probably be a book in order to inform the audience of Durrell’s current goals and work to save species and sustain environments globally.