Even more exciting, I am pleased to say that at the graduation ceremony I had the honor of receiving an award. My final still-life was granted Best Still Life of the Year. This particular painting was a long and challenging project, so to have my work recognized in this way was an amazing and unreal experience.
It's been a quick year and a half, but I am amazed by how much I have learned in so short a time. I started off the winter term with another still-life painting. Originally, my idea was to make a still life based on the Japanese philosophy of Wabi Sabi. Wabi Sabi is an aesthetic which focuses on the beauty of things that are imperfect or transient. For compositional reasons I had to sacrifice the theme a bit, but I tried to include a bit of the original idea in the focal point of the painting, an otherwise perfect white cup with a crack, which rests on top of a fallen leaf. The first still-life painting at school is supposed to be of light objects against a dark background, so I took the opportunity to set the objects against a backdrop of mysterious shadows.
After a few still-lifes, I did my first portrait oil painting while studying at FAA (my previous ones being charcoal drawings).
Alongside working on portraits and still life, I also studied figure painting. My final longpose of the year was a five-week-long seated pose:
Personally my favorite project was a bit of an experiment, a simple still-life of a boot. Since coming to Florence I've adjusted to traveling around the city almost entirely on foot, which sometimes takes a toll on my footwear. After wearing out from months of treading over the cobble-stone streets, one such unlucky shoe made it's way into my still-life. I like to think of it as a bit of a tribute to Van Gogh's painting of the same subject, to which I looked for some inspiration.