Modernism – Assignment 1 Exercise 3

Claude Monet created a series of paintings of his landscape of his home in Giverny called the ‘Haystack Series’. The one painting of the series that I’m looking at is

Grain stacks in the Sunlight, Morning Effect

called ‘Grain stacks in the Sunlight, Morning Effect’.

Monet used a color palette that was as realistic as possible, which adds a majestic element to the painting. His color palette choice of using shades of orange, blue and green for the atmosphere, give the viewer a sense of nostalgia and make previous connections to their own personal lives. His composition of the grain stacks eludes to the depth of which the vast landscape consists of. How he could capture that shows his awareness of his space and how to accurately portray it. He also plays with size and proportion within the composition to elude to the space.

Monet himself was and still is a key figure of the impressionism movement, which is the context that this painting was produced in. The impressionism movement was first developed in France in the 1860s and was based upon the idea of snubbing the ideology of painting at the time; which was fine detail and official exhibition techniques. The movement took off when artists, such as Monet, rebelled against this. An example of how they rebelled was that a lot of artists began painting on location rather than in their studios, as they had been previously. Also, their brushwork was distinctly light handed when compared to previous works. The light-handed approach made the elements of the paintings less distinguishable between one another.

This rebellion is how this painting came about. Monet intended to capture the moment of the scene through his use of natural light and working outdoors to fully capture the time of day and location. In this painting, one can clearly see the influence of the light handedness of the brushwork and because the distinctiveness of each individual aspect of the landscape blends into one another. In many of Monet’s paintings, he embodies the impressionism movement in such a way that don’t need to do much further research into the movement; just look at his paintings.






To Moana or not to Moana disney Dr Teresia Teaiwa

To my understanding, the basic ideas of Teresia Teaiwa’s “I was once seduced by Disney. But no longer” article, is that Disney’s Moana can be seen as a teaching tool rather than a slap in the face to Polynesian culture. I agree with Teaiwa’s article because I view Moana as an opportunity to gain some insight and appreciation of Polynesian culture. Teaiwa states that she too enjoyed previous Disney films that were portraying other cultures such as Mulan for example. I view such films, like Mulan, in the same way that I view Moana as a film, an insight into a different culture. To me, Disney has a long history of bringing different cultures to a generalized unassuming audience and I believe that Moana is no different. It’s introducing a culture to popular media. While growing up in South Africa, I watched all things Disney; from the Lion King to That’s So Raven. Through that, I was exposed to various cultures that were not my own, nor did I know anything about them. When my parents told me that we were moving to New Zealand, I had no knowledge to fall back on as reference points to give me an idea of the Polynesian culture I was about to enter. Disney’s Moana brings attention to the culture and creates a starting point for those who are unfamiliar with it like I was. As Teaiwa states, some people within the Polynesian culture take offense to the films depiction of their culture, but I see it as the culture being brought to the forefront for viewers to then want to explore the culture further to then draw their own conclusions.  I believe that Moana has become, and will now be, a go-to reference and starting point when discussing and exploring Polynesian culture but is not a direct reflection of it. In a similar way that Disney’s Mulan is a reference point for Chinese culture but not a direct replication of it. I do consider that Moana relates to what Teresia Teaiwa says, that it’s a typical Disney film that just makes you feel good when watching it.

Introducing me

Tamlyn Theys. That is my name and that’s a pretty perfect way to describe myself in just two words; Tamlyn Theys. But who am I? That’s a question that I ask myself on a daily basis. Ironically, it’s a question that can sum up who I am; inquisitive and curious. I question things on daily basis because I find it to be a good way to explore and learn more about the world other than to simply just experiencing it. I think it’s important to experience the world but also to question it. My family plays a huge part in enabling me to do so. I have a classic immediate family of four, and an exceptionally large extended family that are all very open minded yet we still have our traditions. The way

Figure 1. Family christmas photo

that my family finds a balance between the traditional and new things that life has to offer, allows me to be able to be free in my thoughts and opinions. They teach me to be true to the values and morals they haveinstilled in me, while still being able to generate my own values and morals. My family is the number one priority in my life. My family also ensures that the culture in my life is rich. I am of South African decent, with my entire family including myself being born and raised there. We are what you’d call ‘coloured’ in South Africa which is not offence, it’s just a way to class the mixed race. Being mixed race means that not only is my family multicultural, but it

Figure 2. Two girls with South African flag face paint

also makes me have an interest and appreciation for different cultures around the world. Two of the main ways that I learn about different cultures is through music and documentary. I believe that music is the universal language that connects the worlds.



Figure 3. Orange documentary icon

The different sounds reflect the culture of the country of which it’s from which helps one get a better insight into the culture. Through different forms of documentary like film and photography, one can also gain an insight into another culture. Documentary reflects the truth and reality of a culture. Generally, what makes me who I am is questioning who I am. Discovering new cultures through music and documentary. And most importantly, having a family that allows me to do so.





  1. Figure 1. Personal photograph
  2. Figure 2: (2014). Two girls with South African flag face paint. Retrieved from×1024/paint-flag-africa-ipad-555517.html
  3. Figure 3: (n.d). Orange documentary icon. Retrieved from