Thursday, July 22, 2010

Evolution of an image

Long time no post, but I have a lot of news and images so this week will be chock full of entries! I wanted to break pace a little bit with my sketches so here are some process shots of the charcoal portrait I had in the show at Monstrosity Gallery! (It also made its way into a magazine! but I will write more about that later)

Hopefully you can still pick out details and follow the evolution of this image despite the bad quality of the photos. Dodgy as they may be they still show crucial moments in the rendering of the face as well as some of the drastic changes I made between stages.

I had been working on this image for a while and had some interesting marks happening, but it wasn't moving anywhere and at the end of the day it was just a slushy indistinct collection of facial features. So I clarified where I wanted the head and the shoulders to be with some strong lines. After solidifying my guideline I was able to push the image because I was confident on the placement of the face.

Most of the fun happens in the beginning when I am just throwing water and smearing charcoal around trying to find patterns I like from the resulting mess. I draw a face and then water it, let it dissolve for a while and then re draw and then let it partially melt again. Then I slowly piece the image together from these leftovers like a fortune teller with tea leaves.

Towards the end I make smaller and smaller adjustments, slowly becoming more afraid of my image and a little too precious with it. Some images die this way. I get too hesitant to change certain areas and I get into a stalemate, where I can't move the picture forward without somehow damaging my favourite part.

Thankfully this one went quietly, though before when I had been pushing it to be a young female with four eyes it had rightly argued. You can still see traces of this in the earliest image's luscious lips and the thinness in the face.

This work is titled The Swimmer and as I said before was on display at Monstrosity Gallery's Portrait exhibition. During the show there was an artist talk and small get together over some munchies. A video was made of some of the artists (me included). Hopefully this video will eventually see the light of day and you'll be able to hear me describe some of the thoughts that go into my drawings.

1 comment:

  1. I like! what have you been so busy with? If I emailed you would you tell me? xxx