Tuesday, February 14, 2012

cooper union hometest

i just finished my cooper union hometest. i can now take a biiiiiig breath out. it was taking over my life. it made me tear my hair out. it was so frustrating/fun/amazing/difficult. here are the things that i made.

1. a composition of three unrelated objects from observation demonstrating a dependent relationship. including the three observational drawings.

for this prompt i decided to go with the regrettable (but sooo lovely) american past-time, disco. here are the observational drawings:

for internetional (totally a new word) viewing purposes, i combined them into one image but they are actually cutouts. for the initial observational drawings, i worked in charcoal and colored pastels. the pastels are great to work with when exaggerating color and enhancing light. the disco ball i was drawing was simply silver mirrors, but each square had a slight tone to it. i chose to brighten the reflections to their full capacities cuz there's more energy to them and it looks rad.

for the final piece, i decided to put myself on death row and embroider the objects. the disco ball alone took 12 hours. i shut myself in my room, with only me, gossip girl season 3, and my embroidery shit.

when i get it back i hope to add it to my jacket.

2. An extreme close-up view of a part of your body.

i chose my bellybutton, because it's the best body part ever. my bellybutton is kinda screwed looking and it looks like an ear...i blame my midwife's cheap kmart scissors.

this one was done with micron pen on paper plus water color wash, modge podged on wood. i have many other versions done with acrylic paint, but two of your solutions have to include drawing, and i didn't know if paint would be considered drawing for sure and i did NOT wanna get disqualified so i made this one. the other ones looked way bloody anyway.

3. a 360 degree view of a space that is occupied.

i hate what i made for this prompt and could not bring myself to even begin to find the energy to redo it in the waning hours of the night before. it doesn't photograph very well either, but it's a little black box with windows in it, and two gothic gardeners and their garden inside. i say no more.

4. A sequence or series of images defining density (minimum of 5 images).

i knew i wanted to make something that pushed the limits of 'series of images' away from having different prints or different drawings next to each other. i tossed around the idea of a stop motion but ended up with a good amount of images to make an animated gif with. sometimes this one takes a little while to load on my computer, so i hope you guys have better internet connections than i do.

for this one i was thinking about how density can be more of a visual idea than a mathematical or literal one. i was inspired by religious iconography and trinkets, and of course lillie who modeled so beautifully and stayed still for the first time in her life! ;)

5. aberrance.

soooo...i deeeefintiely had no clue what this word meant, but when the internet told me it meant 'straying from the norm' i knew i had to do a photoshoot that involved a lot of color. i am really lucky to have friends who want to spend their sundays doing weird shit for me (and getting free food). we all painted each other but it was more like massaging because paint brushes took way too long. and it was freezing but incredibly beautiful outside. overall such a fulfilling sunday and a million times better than watching the superbowl.

thank you so much to tuesday (the beauty in the middle), lucy, cam, katie, antonia, iris, ryan, matt, leaf, halley, jon, max, inian, olivia, lassen, cheyenne, hallie, tommy, nick, lena, and nate for modeling. thank you to burgerville for having buck burgers that day. thank you to my dad for carrying the ladder and making sure i didn't fall off it, and for picking up the burgers and the ice cream. and thank you to matt zaffino for making sure it didn't rain that day.

5. renovate an existing monument to serve a contemporary function.

for this project, i was drawn to mount rushmore immediately. i just love the monument. i've never seen it in the flesh but...ahh...it's my favorite. i really didn't want to draw it; that seemed redundant. i wanted to make it. but you couldn't send ceramix or anything breakable and that's really the only thing i know how to sculpt in...

so i did some research and found out i could actually make it in plastic. i visited TAP plastics (which, for the reference, smells really weird but has very nice workers!!) and they set me up with a rubber molding system and a 2 part polyethylene solution.

in the process of learning how to cast plastic, i made a lot of mistakes. because the back of the model needed to be hollow to hold the room, i wasted soooooo much plastic trying to swish it around to make the walls (making a 2 part mold with this hollow structure is basically impossible). if you have never cast plastic before, you might not know that while casting, it stays very viscous, until 2 minutes has passed and then it hardens in about 3 fucking seconds. it is basically impossible to control. in my frantic 3-am-on-a-school-night casting experience, i made about four screwed up mount rushmores and totally screwed up the ph of the skin on my hands i'm sure. it's still on my fingernails. wahh.

after failing at it many a time, i just made mount rushmore solid. i needed to make it hollow though, because i was going to make this into le hotel rushmore, and i obviously needed space for the victorian furniture!!! so i turned to cristy, my photography teacher/good great friend at school, who told me to track down a dremel, which subsequently, my dad had at work. i carved out the back with this new astounding tool i had discovered, absolutely covering my kitchen in plastic snow. and then i went to work making it a lovely place to inhabit.

oh and the mold got f'd up a little bit so john hancock's just a lil whistler.

and there you have it folks!! all the stuff that i am so glad is away from me and in the mail and maybe on a plane right now!! now my room is a disaster, my homework very undone, my parents relieved they will no longer be housing a crazy person, and my mind, tooootally at ease. yay!!! cross your fingers for me!


  1. olivia if you don't make it i'm going to send them an angry letter these are beautiful and so you, i luv your mind

  2. olivia, all of these are SO good, i am blown away! good luck (:

  3. whoooaaahhh this is wonderful! the gif is the most beautiful thing ever!!!!!!!!!!! crossing my fingers for you right now!

  4. You are so amazing and talented in all different areas. You make me feel like a failure, lol. You are definitely going to get in Olivia.

  5. amazing work!!! I am so excited to hear what they say n stuff. the embroidery stuff is so sick!

  6. That's the coolest embroidery! Good luck!

  7. oh my goodness, incredible..you are one of my biggest inspirations and i will be crossing my fingers you'll be joining us in nyc next year! xx

  8. these are amazing! wow omg, i literally cannot even say how good and genius your work is <3 good luck x

  9. i go to cooper! best of luck and hope to see you in the fall!

  10. incredible! I have my fingers crossed for you :)

  11. Hi Olivia,
    I loved reading this piece! Well written!

    Merlen Hogg

  12. Just curious did you get accepted to Cooper Union