Saturday, April 27, 2013
Dalton, for Julia Kay's Portrait Party
Here's my most recent portrait for the Flickr group Julia Kay's Portrait Party. This is small, six by nine inches, all in watercolor. I liked his gaping reference photo, with the single staring eye and stunned expression. I made me think of the deranged narrator of Edgar Allan Poe's story, The Tell-Tale Heart, though I imagine he is a perfectly normal, nice person.
I like the results well enough, especially the eye. The original reference photo showed a neutral background, which I darkened here to highlight the contrast with his light whiskers, and a plaid shirt that I simply ignored. The darkened side of his face is overworked, but I am choosing not to let it worry me.
Maybe I'm slightly obsessed by eyes. Mine are on a decline. I recently had them checked, since my ability to read comfortably and see clearly at a distance has been getting more and more difficult. I have new bifocal lenses ordered. One eye has a cataract, and I'm wondering how long it will be before the doc thinks it's crummy enough for surgery. Apparently my eyes are changing, and not together. He says the new lenses, complete with pricey coatings to filter out UV and glare, will distort objects in the distance. I guess I'll have to wait to see if that's right. When I commented that I am an artist and having objects in the distance distorted might cause problems, the doc got huffy and said he was doing the best he could for me. I believe he is, but I have some anxiety about the direction my vision is headed.
Back to painting.
On Thursdays I often paint, or just drink coffee and pretend to draw, with a group of friends. Nobody much liked this effort, mostly because of the expression, I think. People want pretty, and that's the truth. It's just that for me, pretty isn't always what I am interested in.
I did have one nice art related moment this week. A gallery owner "up north" called me to say she received my small paintings for this year, and said how much she admired them. Made my day.