in approaching the thought process for what I wanted to write about I enticed what truely made me think, and although too much honestly makes me think. what I wanted to learn more about, explore and write about was heroes. heroes interest me in many ways, all types all shapes all sizes. and in that was the seed for my dissertation.
I spent a lot of time thinking about how I would approach writing about heroes, I had already invested in a book by Joseph campbell titled the hero with a thousand faces, prior to engaging in discussions about my dissertation so on a personal level I was already engaged. in researching one particular image reached out to me and that was Washington crossing the Delaware by emmanuel lutze (this painting really captured my interest because it portrayed Washington so out of himself but so embedded in his accomplishment. and it made me wonder how much of art reflected this thinking. and as I researched further I found that many artworks really spoke to me, such as art form antonio pio saraccino and mauro peruccetti. I have discovered art that I can utilise and relay back into my own practice.
I struggled a lot with how to formulate my argument, I really found that although heroes were so prevalent in art I was not without a mountain of research.
In formulating my dissertation proposal I explored a variety of ways to approach the topic and found myself truly spreading the topic very thinly over a variety of subject matters some of these were reflected in the titles I was considering, I really wanted to make Joseph Campbell’s book the hero with a thousand faces so prominent in my work, but it needed to be expanded beyond that, and it was for me looking back especially diluting and thinning out the subject matter. being initially ill suffering from severe migraines through extenuating circumstances I was presented with more time, this did help me to think about the topics I wanted to explore, however it also delayed where my peers would be as they had already begun writing chapter one, so I was set behind them and found it very difficult to relate to there progress.
In speaking to my dissertation tutor about my proposal she was concerned that although the topic seemed interesting and unique and also that it was such as personal one for me, it lacked underpinning contextually to use her exact phrasing. I found through extensive conversation we eventually used masculinity as a way to bind all of these heroic pieces of art together, so I was given some research and book to look at.
I will admit it is upsetting to me on level that the heroic topic is so focussed on men, because it is a non gender specific trend in my eyes, and I think towards the end of writing my a lot some of that thinking leaked out onto what I was writing about.
though I did find the actual method of research rather enjoyable, think the idea of reading an entire book front to back intimidated me, but that was not how I approached this, I highlighted key chapters and points and did it that way, this for was providing me with a lot of research and also using e-books searching for key words phrases and quotes enabled me to source and gather a lot of information quickly.
I did find that being behind hindered my research efforts however, it was a conscious effort to put the research down and start writing and in doing that I feel the research isn’t fully formed or at least the writing isn’t all it could have bee.
I enjoyed establishing my dissertation as a chronology of sequenced events, writing in this way made jumping through time enjoyable and made the key areas of what I was looking at all the more relatable and easy to see. I have discovered some incredible new art and some very interesting facts about art I have already seen.
I don’t think I have given this topic full justice, but that isn’t entirely surprising to me, essay writing to an art student who isn’t particularly practiced in the matter can find this process abit intimidating and it was.I think that having to approach this again viewing each chapter as its own mini essay is a great way to round off each piece of research and that way when gluing everything together in the conclusion I have a great formulaic way of tackling each point which I found hard to do this time. in writing my conclusion I had to leave it ill dead last evaen after writing my introduction do just coming so far in the research I found that I needed to rediscover what I had written
this was enjoyable for me though as I really do enjoy the topic.
in all I am not wholly satisfied but I am not entirely shocked by what I have produced, I hope I have satisfied the criteria enough that it can help me pass my degree and I am realising that this type of writing is probably going to become an inevitability in many career paths. I found it comforting to know that my lecturers even today still have to write such essays. I can identify that I cannot focus for long periods of time on writing due to my headaches and in fact I suffered form an infected eye on the final week of the deadline which made writing very strenuous, luckily I had some software that read the words out to me without looking directly at my screen. I feel this can be enjoyable, a lot more enjoyable than I initially thought, especially if that topic is engaging to me on a personal level and that has helped me along massively, not having a topic forced upon me has contributed massively to the breadth of research I did and I am hoping that really shows in my writing.