Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Self-Portrait Redux

10/31/12 Cretacolor Nero pencil
Other than some recent blind contours, I haven’t done many self-portraits lately. After drawing more than 100 of them earlier this year, I got a bit burned out. But now in Anita Lehmann’s drawing class, we are studying faces, and the homework assignment yesterday was to draw a portrait, either live or from a photo. Most of my earlier self-portraits were done by looking in a mirror, so for the homework I chose a photo.
Although using a dry medium like graphite or charcoal is generally recommended for portraits, oddly enough, this homework assignment may have been the first self-portrait I tried in pencil. When I gave myself the assignment to draw 100 self-portraits, I knew I would get bored if I didn’t entertain myself with color, so I used a lot of bright markers and even paint for most of them. But now that we’ve been working almost exclusively with soft pencils and charcoal in Anita’s class, I see the value (pun intended) in using black only and a soft medium that can be smudged easily for shading facial contours.
Here’s the test: If I use this self-portrait as my Facebook profile picture, will my friends recognize me?


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