Saturday, September 15, 2007

EDM Challenge #56 - Self portrait

I am taking Anita Davis' advice to share a self portrait, even if it's far from what I'd like it to be. As she says "Art never becomes boring, always a challenge, always something to learn, something to push for." If you get a chance, check out her post. That post in particular really hit home for me.

This is what I sort of look like, if I lost the weight I'd like to lose. LOL. I guess I see myself skinnier than I really am. It's funny how that works, isn't it? I am not attempting any sort of creative piece here ... just trying to figure out what I really look like.


Lin said...

So nice to meet you Joan! Excellently done!

shirley said...

Beautiful sketch - lovely person! Thanks for sharing and being brave enough to introduce yourself to all of us!

wagonized said...

"... just trying to figure out what i really look like" -- what a true thing to say. Isn't it why self-portraits are so challenging? Do we end up finding out what we "really" look like? Is there such a thing? Or is the self-portrait interesting just because it doesn't divulge a truth -- but rather offers a point of view?
Tell me if i am totally wrong, but i sense a bit of restraint in this drawing -- i see a beautiful face, and careful, well crafted shadows -- but it's as though that quest for the "what i really look like" holy grail kept you from pouring yourself into it.
Mind you, i've never had the guts to even explore that path.

steve said...

Very nice!! Self-portraits are so incredibly difficult for me, so I commend you on taking the challenge here. You should hear the groans from my students when it comes time for self-portraits! It's funny too, being we see ourselves pretty much every day.

This is me! said...

MMm...I agree with "wagonized". It DOES look like you (from the photo I have seen), but you do seem to be holding back. Self portraits are very challenging! It is well done, though, I must say.

Joan Y said...

Thanks Lin and Shirley!
France - Ah, you hit the nail on the head. It was definitely a struggle ... sorta like sticking that toe in a pool, knowing full well it's as cold as heck ... tentative and scary. I recall thinking that maybe it was like your Kiki drawing. The most eye-opening experience was how stifling the process was for me. In the effort to get my nose right, I spent more time on it than most of my drawings! It was almost agonizing and in the end, very little of me in it at all. Yes?
Thanks Steve - I agree. I've avoided drawing myself like the plague.
Katie - This is incentive to do another one ... but with my heart, not only with my head. :)

Joan Y said...

PS ... I forgot to mention that the process made me feel like I was seeing myself for the first time, like a tentative first introduction ... struggling to find something coherent and friendly to say when all I wanted to say was, "Hi!"

Anita said...

Joan I feel honoured to be mentioned on your post next to such a lovely portrait of such an attractive woman.
I think it is a great start, a hurdle from the field of fear into the field of fire...Next step is to let it smoke and I look forward to seeing you 'pour your heart' into many more.
I find a good way of loosening up/setting myself free on paper is to give myself a time limit, this encourages me to get marks on the paper quickly, confidently, trusting what my eyes see rather than having the benefit of time to check and re-check. It's an exercise I have found very useful.

Teri C said...

Oh Joan, you are one brave person!! I not only avoid a self-portrait, I don't even think about it!

This is such a lovely portrait and it is good to see what you 'think' you look like. I like the looks.

Bravo to you!!

Ujwala said...

very nice and i hope you do many more. thanks for the link to anita's post. i enjoyed reading it very much.

Marie-Dom said...

Oooooh..I just love your work and this is a fantastic piece, regardless of whether or not it looks like you. My guess of course is that it's a good resemblance judging from the standard of your other drawings.
Love looking at your blog.

lyn said...

Hi Joan,
Nice sensitive drawings here. I've done only 3 partial portraits of myself over many years of artwork. I may try one again!
Nice work.

Joan Y said...

Thanks Anita, Teri, Ujwala, Marie, and Lyn!

Anita - You're an inspiration. And yes, I'll have to try the timed technique. I think it would make a world of difference.

andrea joseph's sketchblog said...

Gosh it is good, and very brave, Jo. I've tried to draw a self portrait every now and then but ALWAYS, without fail, hate it and never feel it really looks like me. I do agree with France, but also I imagine how difficult it would be to really let go. I know I couldn't. And, it's still a great drawing.

Ashley's Art said...

This is marvelous! The detail you put into your eyelids and eyelashes is really great!

Anonymous said...

Hi Jo, I have stared and stared at this trying to see you and I just couldn't. I finally figured out why though... when I picture you in my head, you always have a smile on your face, so maybe that is it! I so admire this talent of yours. p.s. I'm going to send you some pics of Chelsie at homecoming this weekend. Her first date! -Shannon

Joan Y said...

Andrea - Yes, the letting go part is the hardest ... but that applies to alot of things in life too! :)

Ashley - Thanks! How are the classes coming along?

Shannon - LOL. I feel the same way! I swear, the parts are there ... I mean that's what I saw in the mirror ... but then not me at all! I will have to draw one of me smiling ... and then I will look totally different (it really is like seeing myself for the first time!). I feel like a chameleon!

suzanne said...

Good for you Joan... As everyone else has agreed before me, self-portraits are such a delicate art challenge. They have the ability to say so much and at the same time so very little.

You've done a beautiful job here and I hope this reveals you in a way that makes you feel happy.

Tracy said...

first thing i thought was --
she's brave. first off for doing a self portrait. that's tough - we already edit what we draw - i mean its always our interpretation of what we see - isn't it? whether its a landscape or coffeepot - but when its yourself... gee now thats hard. i really need to try myself - i think i've only done one drawing of myself ever - back almost 30 years ago !eek!
my second reason for thinking you're brave is that you posted it - as you see i avoid posting pictures of myself so even a drawing of myself i'd find hard to do.
regardless i think its lovely - and so, most certainly are you my dear.
i hope you'll do another self-portrait soon - pretty please :-)
(i might even do one too!)

phthaloblu said...

Great job! With the sketch and for stepping outside your comfort zone. Guess it's my turn! lol!