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AP Drawing

vincent
Wu

Pacific American School|Hsinchu, Taiwan
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Two Ships at Dawn”, Dimensions: 12.5:x 17.5”|Material(s): Watercolor. Masking fluid, poster paints|Process(es): I drafted the painting and applied masking fluid. Then, I painted the whole piece with watercolor.|Curatorial Note: The traditional landscape explores atmospheric perspective, space, and a sense of movement. It captures a sense of escapism and peacefulness. In a dream-like state of mind, it speaks to social and economic opportunities for everyone.

Student statement

This piece, “Two Ships at Dawn,” depicts two boats lying on a dock. I used watercolor for this piece and incorporated techniques like masking and wet-on-wet to separate the rough and soft edges. And on rougher surfaces, I used a dry brush to create the textures. Throughout the development of this piece, I gained not only the technical aspect of watercolor but also learned to be patient, as the details are annoying to paint. If I were to repaint this, I would focus more on the overall atmosphere and shape designs rather than the details. Lastly, this piece belongs to the Selected Works section, so its primary purpose is to demonstrate my technical skills.
I based my sustained investigation around optimistic nihilism, a philosophy regarding how life is meaningless, and because it is pointless, you get to do whatever you want. It’s essentially escapism, but I’m interested in escaping my responsibilities, so I dedicated my portfolio to this concept. As I developed my portfolio, I realized that the topic I wanted to explore wasn’t exactly optimistic nihilism but the questioning of societal values. Conventions such as earning a high salary, marriage, prestigious careers, or high social status are all instilled values in society. They have no actual value.
Through this perspective, I made expected milestones in life look surreal and eerie, aiming to reveal the illusory nature of the society we inhabit and exist for. In contrast to the social norms, I used slices of nature to symbolize our primal need and the freedom we possessed since birth.
I want to thank my AP 2-D and AP Drawing teachers, Mr. Tifford and Ms. Blanca, for their support and trust in me. l also thank Ms. Wendy for suggesting how I should manage my projects. Simultaneously, enrolling in both AP art classes messed up my schedule, and I even had to switch themes after one semester. However, this portfolio was only possible with the invaluable guidance of these two mentors.
To future/present-inspired artists, be carefully crazy, cringe, and work hard. Try not to be cliche and read some books.
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Throughout the development of this piece, I gained not only the technical aspect of watercolor but also learned to be patient, as the details are annoying to paint. If I were to repaint this, I would focus more on the overall atmosphere and shape designs rather than the details.
Vincent Wu