Return to portraiture

A drawing of my cousin Molly. 🙂

Day 196: Molly

A long time ago in a land not so far away, I used to do lots of figurative work and I really loved portraiture. Back then, I was somehow more immune to the temper tantrum frustrations of getting someone’s face correct.

I think the last time I drew a face was literally months and months ago (which was a commission), and before that, even longer. I started to think that it was a waste of time for me to do portraits because if people want to stick a face on a wall, they just use a photo. Besides that, I generally insist upon using my own photographs as reference images for paintings or drawings, and I usually try to make work that would have appeal to lots of people, plus several more excuses I could add in here. But my friend Reina keeps asking when I’m going to do some faces again, so tonight I begrudgingly forced myself to do it. 🙂

This is a drawing of my cousin Molly. It’s not perfect, but it’s getting late and I’m calling it quits for now. The plan was to do some sweet watercolors like these I did a few years ago…

Older watercolor of a kid in a park

Look at that widdle face!

..but I figured I’d better ramp up and start with some basic drawing again. So, possibly more faces to come. Maybe. I’m not making any promises. 🙂 (Don’t worry, Auntie Kasey, I’ll do Gabby and Emily too. Don’t have any pictures of Brooke or Austin, though. :/)


7 thoughts on “Return to portraiture

  1. These portraits are incredible! They have a very real presence as if they could come to life as you looked at them. Don’t be too hard on yourself, you’re amazing!


  2. yeah. they appeal beyond the relationship of family. for me the consistent, loose painterly quality throughout the work (subject as well as background) of the transparent watercolor which you build layer upon layer and handle with ease, is exciting regardless of who the child is. beyond that you capture personality of individual as well as the excitement of being child – yeah, there is universal appeal there. …then again… may be these are simply the essential california kid. you seem to go after that kidness with glee. they feel trusting, open and in various stages of delight to be part of your world. then there is your strong sense of vantage point – again you pick up on the relationship of the kids to you in the way they watch you-beyond-camera watching them. cool. as a society now we are so aware of what a camera does at a very very early age in life… these kids know exactly what you and the camera are doing and they enjoy the attention you bring to them. …yeah, i can understand why you insist on using your own photos for reference. sheesh, the more i look the more i see – the push and pull of lights and darks… the use of warm and cool color… and transparency… and still the work is fascinating in a way that goes beyond skill. did i say cool? yeah, very cool.


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