MICHELLE THOMPSON ANALYSIS Begin your analysis as above with 4 or 5 examples of work by your illustrator that interest you. These may be chosen for their composition/typography or content. Next add a brief biography of the artist. Only say things that are relevant to your analysis. Michelle Thompson was born in .... . She trained at the Royal college of art in London in specialising in illustration. She now works freelance creating illustration mostly for editorial use for clients such as ..... using a wide range of found objects and images Subjective framework – your ideas and opinions about the work and connections to your design brief I chose to look at the work of Michelle Thompson because I wanted to study an illustrator that would help me to create a contemporary feel to my book cover designs as well as someone who would help me to create strong compositions by putting together a range of ideas and images. I like the way she combines bold contemporary colours and old black and white photos. She uses a limited range of colour and balances her compositions effectively. This first image has an allegorical feel to it as if the image relates to a story or real situation. The larger shadow of the girl seems to magnify her importance. Thompson’s use of lettering can also be quite abstract at times. This sort of technique could help me with my book cover compositions.
Structural framework – Materials ,media and composition principles Michelle Thompson uses a wide variety of different media in her work combining collage, photography and sometimes printing techniques. She often collages images she has found such as black and white or sepia photos combining them with fragments of paper or pattern designs her own drawings. Michelle Thompson collages work by hand but also uses the computer to bring the various media and materials together in her designs. Her compositions are effective because although they seem randomly placed at times the images are balanced dividing the design into thirds or quarters by the placement of dominant images or colour areas. The use of limited colours helps to guide your eye around the page and hold the design together. Patterns or less important information are used in the background to give the design depth as well as a strong use of scale to make some images more dominant. Although quite sparingly used every colour block ,line and letter is used to balance the composition. Cultural framework – stylistic influences and time periods/ cultures influencing the work The use of black and white photos often link Thompson’s work to an earlier time and suggest a sense of history in the designs. The photos used in the image feel as though they may be taken from the 1940’s and 50’s due to the style of the clothes. Stylistically the work may have been influences by artists working at this time such as Robert Rauschenberg and Claus Oldenberg. Rauschenberg often recycled found images in his work eluding to events that were happening historically or socially at the time although he worked entirely by hand using collage, painting and printing. Oldenberg was a sculptor who used scale in his work to comment on aspects of the changing consumerist society. Try to show examples of relevant work when you refer to other influences.
Oldenberg 1950’S Photography
The work of illustrators such as Rauschenberg are likely to have influenced the way Thompson uses found images and a wide variety of mark making in her work. Post modern Framework‐ Comment on the works meaning in today’s context or links to recent news Thompson is an artist who by the nature of her work constantly re contextualises images and ideas in her work. Because she is often producing images to be used alongside editorial type stories they frequently have a link to events that are happening currently in the news or reflecting a specific social or political standpoint. The images below relate to an article about apartheid.
Finally finish with a link to your design brief and your own work. You could also comment on elements of other images by the artist that are important to the development of your own design work In my book cover design work I will use Michelle Thompson’s techniques to combine the photos I have taken with the work produced using Photoshop and Illustrator to create effective contemporary designs. I would like to reflect her use of abstract typography and general mark making in some of my ideas as I think this would appeal to my young target audience.