The Self Portrait

I like painting myself! Does that mean I’m self absorbed? Maybe…
But there are very good reasons to use your own image for a painting.

For one thing, you always are available and won’t have to pay (or bribe) someone else to model.
You needn’t worry about pleasing anyone else, so it’s easier to take risks or be experimental with a self portrait.
It’s also a good way to push technique.

You can play with creative color or interesting value patterns! I call the painting above “Alter Ego”.  There’s texture added to the watercolor paper before painting, using tissue paper, gesso and mat medium.  I stamped with ferns into the medium to create texture.

In the painting “Epic Island”, below, I intentionally did not focus on getting all the features proportional. The nose is too big, eyes set a bit low. But it captures the feeling I wanted, with some exaggeration and weird color. Not everyone will appreciate blue and purple shadows, and that’s OK…

The best reason for making a self portrait is that the creative process is one of self
discovery and realization.
A portrait can be a window to the soul, as much as a likeness.

I’ll be teaching a SELF PORTRAIT workshop at Oregon Society of Artists on September 27th, 2013.
10am – 4pm
$95   / Register or more information HERE

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