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FAO CAA Year 1: Invisible Cities 2018 / What Is An 'Art Of'?

As part of your Invisible Cities submission requirements, you're being asked to produce an 'Art Of'. You'll be asked to submit an 'Art Of' document for all your forthcoming projects, so there's no time like the present in terms of getting the hang of them.

Your Art Of is a curated exposition of your pre-production, production and final piece.


1) to take charge of (a museum) or organize (an art exhibit):
2) to pull together, sift through, and select for presentation


1) a comprehensive description and explanation of an idea.

In other words, your Art Of is the 'edited highlights' of all the work you've produced in the working-up and execution of your 3 Invisible Cities paintings.  

You need to create your Art Of with the uninitiated reader in mind; it needs to explain the brief (succinctly), introduce Calvino (succinctly), introduce Invisible Cities (succinctly), and introduce us to your city of choice.  It needs to include a selection of your most striking and successful thumbnails, and the quality of all images in the document needs to be high and of a 'client-facing' standard - so no grubby scans, or poor reproductions or poorly cropped images etc.  Likewise, your spelling, grammar, typography and layout needs to be first-class.  Your Art Of should be able to take its reader from the very beginnings of the project, right through to the final pieces in a way that is logical and engaging. 

Your final paintings should occupy a page each, so we can really look at them.  You should include close-ups of details of your final paintings - so that the reader may take a closer look at your worlds and at your techniques in creating them.  

You should include 'behind-the-scenes' type sequences, in which the reader is shown how you created your final images, so break-downs of compositions and explanations of work-flow.  Your Art Of might be annotated - i.e. you write short descriptions against the various stages.

Be warned - the more you write, the more you have to spell-check and design graphically.  If you write something about your work, you need to think about what you're writing and you need to spell-check and grammar-check accordingly.  Your 'Art Of' is not a diary and should never be negative.  

Your 'Art Of' should be designed in agreement with your content.  Think about how the 'mood' of your chosen city might be incorporated into the overall design of your Art Of  - its layout and colour palette. You are expected to design the cover of your Art Of and everything else.  Be wary of using overly complicated backgrounds which might distract from the work.  Avoid 'shitty typefaces' and think about the way in which you're laying-out your work on each page: no random gapping between multiple images; when in doubt ensure the spaces between your image layouts are the same.

Here are some useful resources to help you in putting together some effective Art Ofs: for a huge range of fonts visit - some wonderful examples here that might fit with your Calvino-inspired city perfectly (but use wisely and use sparingly!) and in terms of putting impactful colour-schemes together for the overall look of your documentation, this online colour scheme designer and this one takes some of the guess-work out of successful branding and 'getting the look' - have a play and you'll see what I mean!

Think very carefully about your Art Of and the impression it makes; it is a professional catalogue seeking to present your work in the very best light.  

You should be thinking about your Art Of as of now.  

By way of inspiration and guidance, enjoy this selection of Art Ofs from various student projects from various levels of the degree.  Study them wisely in terms of their design, layouts and exposition of workflow.

Julien Van Wallendael

Samantha Niemczyk & Peta-Gaye Brown

Richard Vosper-Carey & Sam Hayes

Charlie Serafini

For a few more great examples go here.