Reflection - 10 05/11/18 Culture Swap / Neighbourhood / Colour / Curate, Part Two

21st January 2019

Following portfolio tutorial with Katie, she recommended that I didn't need to actually produce a final outcome for culture swap as my final line up illustrated sufficiently, and she believed I had a lot to do for portfolio anyway. I'm slightly disappointed as, after experimenting with how my samples could contain the limbs and other body parts, I was really excited to culminate my textiles into one final piece, however I agree that I don't want to overload myself and compromise on the overall finish of my portfolio when my idea(s) had(ve) already been communicated successfully.

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20th December 2018

Despite researching into other means of flotation devices (historical bloomers as female swimwear) to parallel the noodle floats for a final design, I have decided to instead work with the samples that I have already produced, using design development to scale them up, considering how they would contain the body; I received rather positive feedback on a strong few at my progress tutorial, and also don't want to complicate my narrative too much.

5th December 2018

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John Booth's illustration class was incredibly helpful in the way that we actually had time set aside to experiment with drawing style, something I was all too eager to improve within my work. Encouraging us to produce templates for future designs, this will hopefully aid in more efficient illustration, and therefore quicker completion of other tasks. I would like to vary the style of illustration for each project so as to introduce more intrigue as well as cohesion to body of work, so redrawing heads, hands and feet allowed me to realise that this can be done with nuances, and is not necessarily as laborious as I thought :)

5th December 2018

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Beginning to consider portfolio pages, I'm really pleased with the strength of tactility here, an element that I intend to continue by introducing samples to the majority of pages, however I need to introduce a fashion illustration to depict my constant consideration of the body to develop my work, even in the initial research stages. I'm not sure if this layout feels too cluttered though, I just want to be able to convey the narrative, but I think maybe by reducing scale of the central collage, the page may appear more developed.

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On reflection, I think this page is evidence of what not to do. I feel as though I need to produce another observational study of the plastic bag, being more visually communicative of form, whilst maintaining the sense of containment; this is too abstract and looks weak. Furthermore, it has enabled me to recognise that I need to reintroduce garment details to these illustrations, to allow a technician to understand how to construct my ideas. This may be difficult, as all limbs are contained for conceptual purposes, however focusing on the neckline, cuffs, darts, fastening etc may help the designs appear more considered technically as well as with regards to composition.

4th December 2018

IMG_2951[1].JPGDesign development sheets were something I struggled with today; introducing commercial technicalities to my garment ideas seemed rather alien as I'm used to being very experimental due to having no technical training. This is something that I definitely intend to work on over Christmas since I feel as though, by beginning to consider suitable fastenings through drawing, I can then slowly start to gain an understanding for how they work in the physical realm. At the moment, although anatomically correct, my illustrations are too abstract still, so, using them as a guide, I'm going to redo them over Christmas with a finer medium to precisely convey all of the intricacies.

4th December 2018

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Considering my muse with regards to my project, my naive material selection (foam, sponge, wellington boots, tissue paper), coupled with initial conceptual focus on beautiful rubbish being evidence of living in a space / being fulfilled (firstly predominantly at my childhood theme park, and then progressing to Dalston Eastern Curve Garden), caused me to turn to photographs of myself as a child, where my search for pleasure was unhindered.

30th November 2018

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With these experiments, I wanted to see how I could contain the body utilising my samples, fitting joints to the holes in this sample. When illustrating, I wanted to convey this through repetition, to creating an overwhelming sense of containment as opposed to just nuances, possibly by combining placements that I have tried here, but playing with scale too, maybe to contain an ear, a breast, a bum cheek, an entire head even. 

The second series of experiments was considering ruptures of beautiful rubbish spilling and how that may adorn the body, yet I feel the sense of containment is isolated from the body here, so in the last few experiments, I combined samples to ground the body and the sample in a contained harmony, by encasing the rupture and its protrusion. My focus here was to consider garment function, so where the drape on the samples may manifest into a neckline, or a sleeve, or maybe a bias drape of a trouser. I still feel as though I could be stronger with regards to the containment aspect in a cylindrical way with the body, hence why I will be experimenting with noodle floats this weekend to encase the body in a more 3D form, as opposed to illustrating this from body adornments.

28th November 2018

 

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Working on a smaller scale, I was able to refine my initial samples to have a more defined form, more relevant to that of containment; I was really satisfied with my first sample (the pink sponge, with fuchsia pleather contortions and yellow wool), as I was able to consider strongly the interaction of materials to convey my concept, such as by combining twisting, wrap to produce ruptures, and creating protrusions through some of these. With the following samples, in an attempt to more deeply interject my 2D experimentation into my final samples, as Frances suggested, I tried lino printing on sponge and foam, however the acrylic just wouldn't take to porous surface; it only latched onto pleather, which was too weak to contort and manipulate to embody containment in the theatrical form that I intended it to. I think this threw me, as it was how I intended to really push forward my project outcomes, and my panic as a result, coupled with running out of the wellington boot to further deconstruct, its strength meaning contortions were really powerful in my first sample, meant that the rest of my samples suffered and lacked cohesion with regards to form; I think I always assume that each sample must be wildly different to another, as this was required of me at A Level, yet I feel as though nuance of development in each, such as a change of colour composition in addition to a new silhouette produced by different means of contortion with the same material, would be a stronger direction to take, particularly if I feel one sample is successful from the start. I think the selection of a triad of hues worked particularly well with my initial 5 samples, due to such varying texture; a mistake I made this time was try to encompass too complex of a colour story when other elements were also complex, resulting in weak links between all seven, whereas I think varying hue within that triad would have been more successful. I think, form-wise, a sense of collection is stronger in my first 5 samples produced yesterday. One success that I did take from these final samples, while thinking back to my earlier research of debris at Twinlakes Park to more strongly convey the sense of rubbish, was to introduce the grimey surface of puffbinder, yet solidify the optimism with childish pearl clay in the playful hues selected; small injections of this aided in pulling together the separate entities (in my opinion anyway) of my final seven samples, with stronger visual communication of my concept. Moving forward, I want to really explore how these samples may contain the body to push forward my development.

 

26th November 2018

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Creating colour stories today from the waste plastic we had collated over the weekend firstly strengthened the conceptual underpinning of my work (the beauty of the rubbish and debris left behind as a result of people living in a space), as my materials and process lay synonymous. Split into smaller groups to generate initial ideas, we experimented with using negative space of clothes hangers to emphasise the tonal range of one colour, its containment here being very fitting with the explorations earlier in the project, of the plethora of items inside a plastic bag, inspired by those of Ridley Road in Dalston. 

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Separating into even smaller groups in order to have more of a focus, we furthered the idea of containment, by fitting objects together where they were a similar size, such as encasing, hooking, however I feel the relationship between colour became secondary to the concept, and therefore the compositions were quite weak. Deciding to collate objects with a more muted palette as a result of translucency (elegant, prim hues due to sumptuous light engulfing the materials), we were able to produce a sculpture that was rather visually beautiful, with the introduction of juxtaposing strong crimson and black emphasising the soft decadence of the predominant hues. As a result, moving forward, I think I will implement the power of red, and possibly black and violet, in addition to my pink, yellow and turquoise colour palette, to add sophistication, but also to really capitalise on the optimism of such whimsical, playful hues (influenced by the naivety of those at Twinlakes Park).

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With this particular sculpture, using containment as my stimulus again, I explored tonal range and proportion of colour, using accents to break up the pink, as opposed to equal measures of pink, yellow and turquoise that I relied on in my project. Initially I wanted to conceal the base of the circular structure, however I like how the nuanced flashes of turquoise and purple pick up on the strength of the crimson tape, introducing sophistication to a playful colour scheme, a more grown-up angle (in keeping with my research into my cultural identity, of my own growth) on a naive palette, which I really like.

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Proportion of hue was again something that I wanted to play with here, the softness of the rose accelerated by punchy, acidic fuschia. Introducing accents of canary yellow and turquoise here with stitching consolidated the success of the crimson and the purple; without these, I feel my palette is rather sickly, yet intricate doses of these power hues instead encourage appreciation of its naivety. Design development wise, the silhouette of the cascading contortions of the plastic bag will prove for some intriguing garment considerations during observational drawing tomorrow.

22nd November 2018 - Weave

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Producing my smaller weaves, inspired by intricacies of the collaborative one, I capitalised on the containment aspect on observing items in a bin bag in Dalston, by utilising empty tape rolls to confine my experiments, with the bold hues and shiny metallics giving a sense of that beautiful rubbish that I had observed in my primary research both at Twinlakes Park and Dalston; I intend to explore this containment through waste objects further, possibly with deconstructed personal items from childhood to more strongly relate to my culture swap research.

21st November 2018

The linearity of the half drop print’s silhouette bothered me, as the neat polygon is completely at odds with the organic contours of the bin bag, my original identified shape. As a result, I attempted to contain its rigid lines by obscuring them with continuation of the forms, textures and marks pertinent to its structure, an amplified inference of rubbish spilling from ruptures in the bin bag. In order to push the layered aspect further, I experimented with Lino block printing to introduce a new silhouette identified within my half drop print (its form beginning narrow, and broadening toward the base, cohesive with my observations of the ballooning of girth, where the weight settles, at the bottom of the bin bag). Due to this conceptual strength in silhouette, I felt I didn’t need to be so elaborate with layering this time, guiding my print toward a more composition focused print idea, despite similar origins to my intricate first.

20th November 2018

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My work was extremely weak today. I think my problems began with an ill-informed selection of mark, texture and shape. The mark was more an embodiment of shape of wear and tear that I found interesting early on in my collage of photographs produced yesterday, the texture wasn't reflected with tactility at all, and the shape, like the mark, was not relevant in my textile samples at the end of the day, which I found really successful due to their conceptual reflection of burdensome bin-bags spilling with beautiful dirt. I also really struggled to keep up with the pace due to the complexity of the shapes I chose, and, as a result, I was lacking in some stages of development to really push forward my process, as well as the fact that rushing limiting my time to think. Furthermore, the printer did not register my coloured pencil marks, so the final half drop print was barley visible (although weak initially anyway). As a result, I am going to redo each exercise completed in class today, with the consideration of development consistently related to my successful samples yesterday, as well as the constant thought of physically embodying whatever mark, shape and texture I am observing, aided by more appropriate media, as opposed to just visual embodiment.

19th November 2018: Constructing Visual Information

With collage, I was able to visually convey the "beautiful rubbish" that I deduced reflecting on my paralleling findings when researching both my cultural identity, and that of Dalston, with regards to grime, debris and waste being a by-product of living in a space rather than disuse and neglect for aesthetic purposes only. I focused particularly on form and silhouette when aligning my imagery, ruptures in a bin bag, with soiled insides spilling, providing my initial inspiration for my first response, pleased with the complexity of the formation, an encapsulation of the many entities that evolve the bizarre contours of the bag. With my second, I concentrated on how girth increases at the base of the bin bag where the rubbish predominantly settles, giving an inference of being weighed down. Speaking to Katie, she saw a conceptual link between the weight of the bag, and my feelings of containment in my home town, hence my condemning of the Cattle Market, as well as of my grandparents confined by the stereotype of dirt associated with their own county. I used this subliminal personal connection, as well as my findings on construction, to push forward my developed tactile responses.

Bearing in mind the weightiness of the bin bag, I focused on the form becoming broader at the base, however liked the emphasis on extrusions from the ruptures with holes, so I manipulated tracing paper (adorned with the silhouette of the bin bag as well as a physical image of the bin bag to reinforce the concept), tissue paper and sponge in the way that width grew closer to the ground, yet the material that created this width appeared to spill from within the "bag". I began to develop this sample further with the consideration of the body, repeating it to visually clarify the crescendo of silhouette.

To further my tactile response, using my observations on construction from my research in Dalston, I formed more samples, a particularly successful outcome being prompted by the fold and secure method of tarpaulins at Ridley Road Market, the use of cable ties at the apex allowing that bin bag silhouette to be reiterated. I think my next step now needs to be introducing the body into my sketchbook to show where it would lie on the human form, as my constant consideration of it is just in my head at the moment.

11th November 2018

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Again, on my usual quest to introduce tactility to my sketchbook, I attempted to bleach dyeing gloves to convey the corroding damage of pressurised conforming to hair ideals as a woman, however the material was so fit-for-purpose that there was no change, even after dousing them in the liquid!! Instead I settled for photographic experiments, which visually communicated my thoughts, but not in terms of touch that I had hoped for :(

11th November 2018

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Inspired by the resourcefulness of Black Country Women, I utilised ingredients listed in the magazine (vinegar, shampoo, washing up liquid), trapped in PVA, to produce textural experiments. Visually intriguing, they almost appeared embryonic, like the cultivation of this extraordinary branch of people, however unfortunately the liquid did not dry, and ran, so it only succeeded in photographic form, as opposed to the tactility that I was hoping for.

6th December 2018

Receiving peer feedback on my sheets, my criticism of the cluttered arrangement was confirmed; they suggested splitting my sheet into several would be more useful. I already intend to have quite a volume of sheets for this project due to being thorough with my research and development, so I think maybe using A1 sheets would be more beneficial for me, especially because I work quite conceptually, so I do need a lot of information to communicate my narrative

I'm struggling at the moment with my portfolio sheets, as I know that I need a balance between narrative and showcasing my strongest work, however sometimes the integral pieces in communicating my concept aren't necessarily my most successful; I think before I can really move forward, especially due to my intentions to further my experimentation with noodle floats to push more of a fashion outcome, I need to return to my sketchbook to redo previous studies to get them to the standard that I am drawing now (more informatively), introduce more illustrations (inspired by John Booth, and how I want to return to my avidity for contextualising samples in the early research stages, which I discovered at A Level), and further respond to new ideas in this new direction that my project is taking me. I'm really glad that the tutors have started to get us thinking about layout, and it has actually allowed me to realise what I need to improve in my sketchbook, however I feel it is too early for me to start constructing these sheets to the standard that I would like as I feel really ambitious, determined and inspired with what I want to achieve over Christmas with regards to extra work.

2nd December 2018

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Taking inspiration from previous illustration as to where I contained limbs by a lack of armhole, and leg holes, as well as being influenced by the silhouette of the slides I observed at my theme park being anchored around a central pole, I tried to create negative space with my draping, thrusting limbs through here in a way that looks uncomfortable, much like how I feel with regards to being confined to my home town. I feel as though these experiments are really strong, as, although they deviate from the sense of beautiful rubbish, I think that this element could be reintroduced by working into these noodle floats, maybe covering them in materials experimented with in initial samples, emphasising this sense of containment with encasing. or even just allow containment to develop as my conceptual underpinning as I feel as though I have pushed the beautiful rubbish consideration to its limits, due to my final samples feeling quite flat, in my opinion, as reflected earlier - this is something I need to discuss with a tutor. This nod towards swimming has also lead me to consider the sense of containment people must have felt historically in the early developments of swimwear, something that I could conduct secondary research into, which I feel would give my project some archival propelling from a fashion source, but also links to a  feeling of being contained in your own skin, and my exploration of flesh pink, due to the iconic unflattering silhouette the bathing suits produced

29th November 2018

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At the crit, I was really inspired by the way in which others use their sketchbook, as I think mine could be visually stronger; as a result, I am going to try to play with ways in which I might approach fashion illustration and design development, through editing my photos, maybe with an introduction of grain to nod toward the naive nostalgia of my culture swap research, integral in my samples, or even by working on top of images in black and white, as I feel as though I need more of my own hand in my sketchbook (illustration was what I really admired in others' work). Receiving feedback in a small group, I was advised to consider evidencing the fact that I utilised a deconstructed wellington boot in my sketchbook as it wasn't clear unless I spoke about it, and my peers felt it was really stroingly considered in relation to my concept. Katie said that my material choice reminder her of noodle floats that you swim with as a child, which I was satisfied with as it suggested that I had successfully achieved the sense of naivety that I intended to convey, but it also prompted me to consider how this sense of containment through contortion may be achieved on a large scale, with the body involved, as this is how noodle floats are used - to contain the body on the surface of the water to prevent you from sinking. I'm really excited to explore this as I always saw my samples in a fashion context, maybe through repetition, or scaled up, but this will really help me to develop the success of the form whist considering a central anchor (the body). 

27th November 2018

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Developing my initial five samples in class today, my mindset was very much focused on this feeling of containment, observed initially in the bin bags filled with rubbish in Dalston, but more personally with regards to living in my small hometown, yet the joy I experienced there during my childhood, all of this evidenced through "beautiful rubbish" that I explored returning to my local children's theme park, (which I observed was riddled with debris and grime), symbolic of enjoyment, fun, curiosity and play, rather than a more morose, clinical, tidy lack of use. As a result, my material choice was very naive, opting for foams, tulle, sponge, yet also with the consideration of this "beautiful rubbish", optimistic hues adorning tissue paper, a replication of the plastic bag's texture, as well as a  deconstructed child's wellington boot. The containment developed throughout form, such as with a squeeze of a cable tie, or contorting the foam, or wrapping around a structure, or even pushing through a "rupture" (such as in the bin bag). Although my materials strongly linked to my concept due to their naivety, Frances suggested a consideration of more sophisticated choices in order to strengthen my outcomes, possibly with the introduction of my print work, which she believed to be strong. As a result, tomorrow I am going to experiment with this sense of containment with the introduction of more conventional materials (possibly pleather, and maybe even the optimism of the wool used in my half drop print) alongside naive, such as the sponge and the foam, seeing whether I would be able to physically produce lino prints onto these surfaces.

25th November 2018

Following my colour research, I've concluded that I am going to persevere with a bolder pink, as I feel as though its connotations are more strongly tailored to playful optimism, linking to my research with the most force. Obviously hue may vary slightly. due to the nature of sourcing waste plastic for this week's workshops, however magenta will be my focus.

25th November 2018

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It felt like a natural next step to consider these contained weaves on the body, using a bin bag to strongly relay back to my concept of beautiful rubbish. I allowed these samples to contain the silhouette during draping, with contortions being anchored around the spheres, creating ruptures like that of the fragility of the bin bag. If this were to be an outcome, I think more samples would be necessary to transform this body adornment to incorporate and contain the full figure, as, at the moment, it is just sitting on the front; I feel like a more cylindrical approach would be more fulfilling in terms of that larger scale embodiment of containment that is so strong in the weaves. I am going to attempt to convey this through fashion illustration.

21st November 2018

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IMG_1988[1].JPGMoving forward with this silhouette consideration of a weighed-down bin bag, broadening at the base, I used an abstract lino print, applying it to crumpled tissue paper in order to more strongly communicate its origins of inspiration (bin bag). I felt that the texture was really successful, coupled with creating protrusion through the cut out areas on the paper to allude to beautiful rubbish spilling from ruptures, so I combined the two to introduce a 3D element to my print, finishing up with organic entities which contain their own ruptures and protrusions too. This exercise really helped to visualise a 3D manifestation of how this sense of containment of rubbish and its forcefulness to escape might develop into an outcome.

20th November 2018

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IMG_1845[1].JPGI was way more satisfied with the outcomes produced tonight, redoing the tasks from today’s class; I felt I more accurately encompassed the texture of the sponge with layers emphasising intense depth, as well as the introduction of its physical spring with pearl clay. Collage with tissue paper really heightened the final print too, as I could convey the intricate foldings and crumplings of the bin bag, a strong conceptual focus of my project that successfully informed my samples yesterday. Whilst removing my failed experiments from today’s class, I actually was really drawn to dregs of tissue paper left behind on the page and how they interacted with ruptures in the page produced by paper cutting, an unexpected embodiment of beautiful rubbish, in the way that my crap work became more visually satisfying and conceptually relevant during being torn down. I also was intrigued by the form that was created by compressing masking tape, tissue paper and tracing paper with the intentions of throwing it away, again the bizarre contortions really relevant to my concept. As a result, I have learnt that not being so precious with my work can lead to unexpected, more experimentally successful outcomes.

18th November 2018

Following conducting my research into my assigned London borough, I found a lot of parallels between my cultural research into my working class upbringing and the working class people of Dalston, and the dirt, grime, waste surrounding that more arduous strive for fulfilment by really living in a space; I will utilise my findings from these two areas to propel the development of this project. 

Colour wise, it was important for me to continue the pragmatic optimism of the people influential to my own culture and to that of multicultural Dalston; I opted for turquoise, yellow and pink, also nuanced within the bin bags that were so influential to the development of my observational responses, from Ridley Road Market. I'm also pleased with how this palette directly aligns myself to my work, with it being a continuation of the vibrancy of hue outlined in my very first collage, representative of my curiosity and playful, experimental eye, ignited by Twinlakes Park.

11th November 2018

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In an attempt to convey the smog of the Black Country, I over-heated puff binder (coincidentally almost setting the fire alarm off at Sketch House filling my room with smoke lol), and, being satisfied with the grimy depth, I transferred the texture onto samples, exploring the inconsistent nature of smoke, both in its texture and silhouette; despite maintaining the same foreground, I liked how each experiment with felting, pleather and tulle appeared as separate entities due to the unique reaction of each material. The wrapping of the pink yarn really aided this individuality as no form could be exactly replicated, yet its hue also introduced optimism to the black, a reflection of the pragmatism of the Black Country people. My next step will be to combine all three to really contextualise and convey that change of state.