Thursday, October 6, 2011

Scary Faces

Everybody wants to be good at drawing faces and I'm no different.  As so often happens in my little corner of the art world, several of my different artistic pursuits are converging this month.  The "Supplies Me" class has been all about drawing faces.  The challenge for this week's WP Sketchbook Project is faces.  And the Butterfly effect's weekly theme is ALSO faces.   
When better to post some of my recent facial forays than October - the official month of scary faces.

Since the Butterfly Effect theme is actually portraits, I decided to gaze even deeper into my navel than usual and offer you some self-portraits.

Have you ever tried taking pictures of yourself?  It's really hard to not look like an idiot.  I have a series of camera-in-the-mirror pictures that are really cheesy.  I also learned how to use the "photo booth" setting on my MacBook and I took a bunch of pictures of myself in the back yard recently. This one is hilarious.  I think I was trying to look serious and contemplative, but instead I look suspicious, or maybe even hostile.

When Max first saw it he said "you look sad".  He saw it again tonight and said "Maybe it's the black and white, but you look younger in this picture".  The kid sure knows how to pay a complement.

Now brace yourself, this one's freaky:
I painted over a big photograph of myself.  With aqua paint.
I saw this idea somewhere, and I swear it was on Kelli Nina Perkins' website, but now I can't find it, so maybe I'm totally failing to give credit where credit is due.
Here's my gorgeous aqua face.
My nostrils look so big I could trim my nose hair in the car
 As freaky as it is, it's a fun exercise and it's good for practicing shading and contour.  Plus it cracks me up.

THEN:  since I've mostly been working on sketching faces, I decided to draw my own reflection in my little travel sketchbook. 

It could do with some shading, and it doesn't look that much like me.  but still.   it shows my ubiquitous hair clip and my naturally frowny face.

Finally, I got sick of my own face, and decided I needed to try to paint a BIG imaginary face.  Now, you may or may not know this about me, but I am the Least Patient Artist on the Planet.  I simply couldn't wait for each layer of paint to dry and would jump in way too early and mess it all up.  Hopping around with the heat gun on the extension cord wasn't helping.    Her proportions kept getting odder as the paint smooshed together, but I just kept going with it.  During one excruciatingly long period of wet paint, I stamped the words "Impatient Girl" across the top, just to have something to do.  I like that the more I painted, the bigger her hair got.  I finally had to go to bed, and today I was able to draw in the rest of her features with a pencil.

Aren't you glad I'm posting every day in October?


  1. it takes courage to take your own photograph. totally.
    also. i LOVE the black and white picture.

    i was interested in the supplies me class - i'm not sure that it's something i can still register for - you holler at me and tell me what you think of it. like what you really think of it.

    i am googly nuts about 'impatient girl'



  2. Those are great faces! :) I love the one painted over a photograph.

  3. Yep....I am glad you are posting everyday. Love to hear other artists thoughts as they work. :)

  4. I'm impatient too and my heat gun gets plenty of use. Have you ever tried working on more than one piece at a time to help with the impatience? Love your faces. :-) I'm glad you are posting everyday too, that's a lot of work!

  5. I love the freaky aqua woman. You are right it is soooo hard to take a good pic of yourself. I rarely mange it. Like you last sketch too, Good stuff your creative muse. xox Corrine

  6. These are great. I totally love your pencil sketch, and I do think it resembles you. Impatient Girl is awesome. Having to wait for paint to dry is torchure. Heat gun, waving it around, I am not good with the wait time. Thanks for stopping by my blog.

  7. these are great, I want to try the painting on a picture one... thanks so much for sharing!

  8. Love these faces :D I'm always struggling to photograph myself...then today my 13 year old said "why don't you use the vid cam on your laptop?" Doh! XXX