Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Self Portraits

This semester in my figure drawing class we had to do four self portraits. We had four pictures taken of us, and for each photo we had a specific format for the dimensions of the drawing.

"Cosmic Background"

For this first one, the assignment was to use a full sheet of normal aspect ratio paper. I chose to do each of mine on toned paper, since I like actually drawing in the lights. Plus, I didn't have to shade as much using toned paper, which is good, since I was using graphite pencil.
We were also encouraged to make these self portraits personal, so I drew mine with a sample of what might be on my mind on a given day.:)
This drawing got into the student show at my school, and won the juror's choice award for the drawing category.


Here's the second in my series of self portraits. 3/4 view, tall and narrow format.
The eponymous components are just things and places that have left and influence on me.
For some reason, it is difficult to get a good photograph of these drawings. I didn't see that this one was somewhat blurry until I uploaded it. If it wasn't such a pain in my ass to get my camera and computer to cooperate, I'd redo this one. I still might.

"The Feeling is Mutual"

We were encouraged to include personal imagery in these self portraits, so of course I had to include the skulls of some extinct things.:)
The way I see it, there are a few symbolic interpretations of this one. On the most basic level, it could be saying "I'm into paleontology." On a deeper level, it could be saying that, since I'm staring at a bunch of things that are long dead and gone, I dwell on the past (which is true). Or, since a bunch of scary, toothy things are looming at me out of the darkness, and rays of light are shining out from me, it could be saying that I'm facing, or facing down, the negative aspects of myself.

Hyperodapedon Brontotherium Thylacosmilus Gorgonops Diprotodon Dunkleosteus yay!

"Circle of Life"

Last of the self portraits. Square format, and front view with flat lighting.
I decided for this one that my main motif would be a ring of my critters surrounding me.
This feels unfinished to me. Also, I learned a strange thing about blue toned paper while drawing this. It seems that it absorbs the material you put on it. I'd draw on it one day, then when I'd look at it the next day it would appear paler, with the darks and lights less pronounced. Whether this is an actual phenomenon or just a subjective illusion I don't know, but others that I've talked to have noticed it as well.