Personal Project Interview: Kaylyn


Personal Project Inquiry Questions

How to develop and utilize watercolour techniques to create three realistic portraits?

How did you choose your topic?

I’ve done art my whole life. I started really young with my mom, and I started at school when I joined Meadowridge in Junior Kindergarten. I love drawing, but I wanted to use the Personal Project to explore a new and different artform. So, I chose watercolour paint.

Walk me through the process: how did you get started? Did things change along the way? What was the overall experience like?

I started by doing some research into watercolour. I had just four months to learn how to paint and actually paint my portraits, so it wasn’t a lot of time to learn a new skill. I was originally going to paint four portraits, but I changed that to three. I’m very glad I did that! I started with a plan, but it was tough to follow. Painting one week, analyzing it the next… it was hard to follow a timeline with so many portraits to paint. Anyways, I decided to paint the same portrait but in three different styles – one abstract, one with watercolour pencils, and one with watercolour paints – and then write an analysis for each.

It was very tedious doing everything, and I feel like I managed my time pretty well considering. I created lots of checklists and mapped out everything I wanted to do. I started cramming in a lot of homework towards December, which is when I started to follow my plan more closely. I usually don’t follow plans well, it’s not something I normally do, but it worked out well for me. I feel like I learned a lot of valuable skills for the Diploma Programme.

Kaylyn’s Tips for Watercolour 

"Be careful with how much water you use!
It’s really easy to blend and mix which will wreck the piece."

Watch Kaylyn's Personal Project Video

What are some of the more interesting discoveries you made while working on your project?

It was interesting to see how I could use my previous skills and knowledge with drawing and apply them to painting – I knew how shadows worked already, for instance. I also drew all my paintings as drawings first, so I could pick out the different aspects I liked and apply them in my painting. It was interesting to see how my skills could advance!

Usually, I try to match things exactly so. My abstract painting was the hardest to do because I’m a bit of a perfectionist. I don’t always enjoy seeing my art because I just see mistakes. I learned to enjoy seeing the progress of things.

Seeing what I was able to accomplish in so little time was very rewarding, and I was able to see the extent of my skills gained in MYP and outside of school.

What was the highlight of your personal project?

I was going to say this for my video, but my advisory teacher said not to… printing out my report! Seeing my report put together and complete was rewarding since it represented months of work and in-depth learning and I got to see all the progress that I made.

What’s next? Where does your project go from here?

I’m going to keep drawing. I also want to start doing oil paintings and acrylics and continue to explore watercolour.