The person I was given for the Biography project was Norwegian play writer and poet, Henrik Ibsen.
It took me a very long time to get started properly with this project. I kept coming up with ideas but nothing was really making me particularly motivated to start. My first idea was to create a miniature theatre set up and create stage sets for events in his life and then photograph that and use the images to make a book. I started sketching out a few characters, but I just wasn’t into the idea at all.
The idea I finally settled on was to focus on my interest in the natural world and landscape painting. I decided to create a series of images that document Ibsen’s life by focusing on the places he visited and lived in. He spent most of his life in Norway and Germany, with periods in Italy, all of which have some incredibly beautiful landscapes. I researched his timeline, to find out where he was at which stages of his life.
I did a few initial paintings to work out what materials and methods I wanted to use to create the images.
I had been using a lot of watercolour when I first started working on this, but after a few tests I decided acrylic was definitely the most effective. Having really solid, pigmented colours was better for building up layers of an image with big expressive brush strokes then the watercolour was.