Sneek a Peek – 3 Faces of Me, Self Portraits

In my self-imposed isolation from all things and people Covid-19 my only interaction with humans has been through the computer screen and on-line art classes.  The assignments have been keeping my brain from completely atrophying.  Although after seeing some of my pictures you may think otherwise. 
I’ll do my best to describe what the teachers assigned.
1. We were to pay attention to our dream messages and do a picture representing “The Other Side of Me”.  My dream was struggling to walk uphill (no interpreting please!).  The drawing uses a hyped up mixture of instant coffee as “ink”.  The ballerina is the opposite of me – I have no rhythm, would not describe myself as graceful, have never been very limber and she is resting, unlike my dream where I struggled to move.  I tore her out and pasted her on black paper.
2.  Assignment was to use the artist Giuseppe Arcimboldo as  a reference

Arcimboldo painting example

and create a self portrait using a combination of painting and collage.  The snails were my starting point because a previous assignment was to use a picture of a snail somewhere in a collage.  So here I am with caterpillars on a flower field, butterflies, lady bugs and snails.  This is one of my favorites!

3.  This assignment was to do a self-portrait pencil sketch and incorporate symbols that reflect something about ourselves.  As I was sketching one fine day, feeling like “death warmed over” the images of swords flashed so that’s what I incorporated, not thinking about the symbolism until . . . .

. . .  one of the participants asked me “why the swords?” and here’s what came to mind:

I was very fatigued and couldn’t bring myself to move to a table so sat on couch, my sketch book in my lap, holding a mirror in one hand, sketching myself with the other hand. The image of swords popped in my mind.

They are a part of my hair because I (we all) carry a sense of the precarious, the dangerous with us, each in a different way. As I drew myself I was struck by how my internal image I have of myself is not what I saw in the mirror and what I saw has become someone I don’t recognize. The knives evolved in my mind of living on the knife’s edge.

There were originally 4 knives and I eliminated one. Now I’m wondering if they are also symbolic of “time” – past & present on the left (touching/intertwined) and future on the right??

Looking at the picture now, more detached, it appears almost as if my throat has been slit (I drew the shadow/wrinkle on my neck). It’s a disturbing picture but very reflective of how I feel when I’m in a flare of symptoms.

NO MORE INTERPRETING PLEASE!

I call this “Self Portrait with Pears”.  I tore up another charcoal picture that I didn’t like and pasted it on an acrylic painting of a bowl of pears that was a practice assignment from 2 years ago.  The bowl of pear picture is upside down . . . if you’re wondering where the pears went . . . 

Judy

8 comments on “Sneek a Peek – 3 Faces of Me, Self Portraits

    • The swords are probably the friends that keep slicing into my memories and mind and the guilt I feel for not keeping in touch. I think about you DAILY as you (and Len) are in my prayers. Sending my love always, j.

      Like

    • James,
      How nice to “see your voice”. And it’s interesting to hear that in your eyes I’ve progressed because it’s difficult to see my own work objectively. I try to share the “unvarnished” to remind myself and show others that “perfection in self perception” is not the objective.
      Stay safe.

      Like

    • Shari,
      Thanks for the “awe”. The one thing I do try for is honesty in both life and art so it’s lovely to have an affirmation. I too, am looking forward to seeing, touching and visiting. It is finally on the horizon. Miss you, love you, always! j.

      Liked by 1 person

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