5.02.2012

The Self-Portrait

Ok.  As an artist I know my weaknesses.  And during the 3 figure drawing classes I painfully made my way through in college, I realized that figure drawing was a serious weakness.  I was telling Tiffin the last time I had to draw a portrait of myself (not counting the portraits I demo in class at school....those are on "their" level) it was a nude self portrait.  No seriously.  Nude.  Our professor had us create portraits of ourselves in our birthday suits.  Bless my heart....my southern, modest holy crapper what is my Momma gonna say when this comes home heart!!  Well, made it through that one.  I don't think I made such a great grade on it either.  What happened to it you ask?  Well I still have it.  Yep.  It hung in our old house in the hallway.  Yeah...I know.  Wild thing.  No really, it was very modest.  I'm pretty sure NOT what the sicko professor had in mind.  It's one of my favorite works from college.  Anyhoo, great story right?

Vero over at the Naked Art Gallery asked me if I'd be willing to participate in the self-portrait installation she is doing for the gallery in May.  Now, depsite her super cool name, this one did not need to be in your birthday suit.  Stop it.  Ever eager to please my sweet Vero I said yes.  Then fretted on how to go about making a freaking portrait.  Of myself.

Well, I started like I do my bike paintings.  I took a copy of a photo of me and traced it onto the wood.  I already new the composition would include the bird and cage.  That was a sure thing.  But once I got that real face drawn onto the wood it totally freaked me out.  Yucko!  Do I really look like that?  So I exaggerated the eyes, shrunk the lips and went to painting.  And I love it.  Symbolically it fits me to a tee.  My entire life I've been told I have beautiful blue eyes (made them large and piercing) hated my crazy large nose (attempted to leave it off the face completely) and my lips are really tiny (thus why I shrunk them).  It's funny how we see ourselves in the mirror....and how others see us.  Although I don't think too much about my looks these days.  At 40, you pretty much have to learn to live with what the good Lord gave you.  God blessed me with such a healthy body and simple features....that I just joke about the things I'd love to change.  But never will.  Well not with a knife anyways.  I do love to exercise!


So this little 8x8 painting is headed to Birmingham tomorrow.  Will anyone recognize it as me in the gallery?  Probably not.  But that's ok.  Because there is more of me in that painting than really meets the eye.

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