Visual content by Chris Melchior :
|My organic-abstract fine-art for sale on Zazzle (as postcards)|
|Some of my Christmas cards (click the link to see more).|
|My portfolio on 123rf.com, which includes art and photography.|
|My flower greetings cards, some of which were initially a best-selling range for Gallery Cards (of Muswell Hill, London, around 1989).|
My artistic journey . . . while studying Communication, Information and Electronic engineering, I was disillusioned with the course which was mostly mathematics taught without any understanding of what it means, (and we were told that no-one in the real world has done those equations manually for decades). I happened to be writing letters to a friend of mine (this was in the days before the internet), and painted copies of Roger Dean images (who was my major inspiration at the time, see more on one of my other sites about Roger Dean), and creating lettering in his style etc.. Her mother was an art teacher and said that I had some obvious talent.
So I quit doing something I wasn’t enjoying (a valuable lesson I learned from that course, while looking at the history of business, is that I didn’t want to get paid for turning up somewhere from 9 to 5, I wanted to get paid for making my own personal creations) and embarked on art education. I attempted to apply to the graphics course at Middlesex university, but wasn’t experienced enough to be accepted, so they walked me down to their Foundation Art course . . . I was too late to apply there but they recommended a good pre-foundation course first . . .
So I did a pre-foundation year at Camden Arts Center, where I learned a lot. One of the best teachers there watched me do impressive art, with all the other students crowding around admiring my work for the first few weeks, then told me that if I really wanted to improve, I should be totally honest when I worked . . . any line that I drew which was not 100% perfect, erase and re-do it, and most importantly, don’t look at the results, just keep doing the work honestly. This was profoundly helpful advice, and improved my life-drawing enough for it to be the significant factor in getting me admitted to the Middlesex Foundation Art course the next year . . .
I’d looked around at a few other foundation art courses, but what I needed to improve most was the underlying structure of my work . . . I could do fine detail well, but what was behind it was weak. The Middlesex foundation art show showed lots of bold, powerful work, and were obviously challenging students to go beyond their comfort zone, so it seemed a good fit for me.
My year at the Art Foundation course at Middlesex was one of the most intense and valuable years of my education. I learned so much, including eventually getting to understand and experience the concept of fine art :
Fine Art is a process, you create something, compare the results with your reference material and clarify the focus on whatever element interest you most in your work, and then you create some more. This cycle leads you somewhere you could not have imagined when you started . . . it’s a real exploration of yourself and reality, but to do it honestly requires contact with the Void (which is where all genuine creativity originates, in part), which can be scary at first but is often addictive.
By contrast, imagining something in your head then rendering that in some physical form is design, which is a very different process.
I realized that Fine Art was what interested me most (although my design and graphics skills have been useful too), and went on to do Fine Art and music (and some philosophy too) at Middlesex university (which, at the time had one of the best broad-based fine-art courses in the country, and was also the foremost course for general performing arts), which was an amazing 3 years of my life, including a semester on exchange in America (and travelling there before and after, which was a life-changing experience).
Since then I’ve created lots of fine art (mostly abstract organic, see above), and made good use of my graphic-design skills in my web-design, logo design, graphics, etc. as well as enjoying photography (see above), web design, and more recently getting into product-design too (that project will be re-launched sometime in the near future).