Sunday, February 17, 2013
The fall back
When inspiration isn't high or other things are on my schedule, I have a fall back. Its me. Or more precise, self portraits. They help me work out solutions, experiment with mediums and techniques and there's never much complaint from the model or any fees to pay.
The comfort level comes from familiarity. After all these years, I know my face, good and bad, well. I have the ability to see skin tones in an instant, adjust lighting to suit my needs and tweak without protest. Self portraiture creates a historical record of features at a specific point in time. Not that future generations or public will hold me up as a celebrity, but they may be curious about the time or person that connects in some way to themselves.
When I think of generations long gone, I would love if they had recorded themselves in words and paintings for me to see and get a glimpse into their life, whether real or imagined.
I enjoy using watercolours for portraits. They give a soft but strong impact and work so well for skin tones and eyes. I love seeing features appear out of the white paper as if by magic. This seems to happen more with watercolour for me than oils where I block in more colour at the start. Of course I could do the same with watercolour, but I go with the eyes first then work my way out from there. I drew this out yesterday between bouts of doing other administrative tasks and started adding some colour today, again, between tasks.
Its not really a work in progress though you will see more complete versions appear in the future, provided the muse doesn't push me into another direction before that happens.
What's your fall back subject?