Wednesday, 30 January 2008

Self Portrait January 2008

Self Portrait January 2008, oil paint

I've finished it, at long last, after nearly binning it last night.

I managed to get out of work (my day job) early this afternoon, and had an hour and a half in the studio with no distractions. As if by magic, it all came together, and has ended up quite different again.

I am very happy with it. I think it's strong, and it's definitely me.
I'm undecided as to whether I want to jump straight into another self portrait, of whether I want to start something different, or maybe pick up one of the themes I started last year; a sky-scape, or a nude. I'd still like to make use of the drawings I've been doing of people at the bus stop. Mmmmmm. Lots to think about. But I feel like a weight has been lifted from my shoulders, now that this one is finally done.


laureline said...

Very strong and sculptural---well done! I love to read the exhilaration in your post, too. Thank you so much for visiting my blog, Steph. I look forward to getting to know your work better.

Anonymous said...

How fun to see your progression in doing self portrait and well done! You are a brave person to undertake that.

Bill of Ballaugh said...

BLooking at the finished portrait, I was trying to describe it to myself. The one word I kept coming back to was 'STRONG' (capitals included). Then I switched to 'Post a Comment..' and saw laureline's post. She so much expresses what I would have tried to say but, honestly, I saw the comments AFTER thinking about your self-portrait. Oh so well done, Steph.

Julie at Virtual Voyage said...

Great to see it now its complete - reminds me of Mediterranean sculpture with the colour choice. Has impact.
Saw Moore at Kew yesterday - ace exhibition.

amy said...

hmm im undecided! mainly because its so sharp, dont get me wrong its beautifully painted but theres something thats niggling at me when i look and i cant put my finger on it! :S


amy said...

right ive looked again i think i know what it is... your background is the same colour as your hair and jumper and im finidnig it difficult to see where your hair is, so you look like you have a cm of hair, if that makes sense? maybe would have worked better with a greyish background so you can see more of your hair as it blends too much with the background.

Melanie Rimmer said...

I like it a lot. You look like you're outside on a windy day, shutting your eyes against the wind, and your hair looks sort of wild and windswept, too. I can't believe it grew out of that earlier portrait. The difference between them is stunning. I really love getting to see all the stages of your work. So what are you working on next?

Yellow said...

Thanks everyone for your comments.
Laureline - keep visiting please. I'd love your imput (and some of your followers LOL)

Susan, I don't think I've ever worked so hard on a painting. But I'm so happy with the result.

Bill (dad) I can't wait for you to see it in the flesh. But you can't have it.

Julie, I know Moore, but what do you mean about Mediterranean Sculpture? Please send me some links or artists name so I can look them up. That'd be great.

Amy, I know what you mean about the background, but not grey. Something else maybe. There'll definately be more self-portraits in the future. I'd love to paint your portrait too.

Mel, apart from Flylady, I've got this Thursday off work, so I'm jotting down ideas as I type.

Julie at Virtual Voyage said...

Last time I was in the British Museum up in town, I was looking at excavated pottery (terracotta) mask pieces from Corinth - used in drama in temples etc; these were of different types, like warrior or young man, very expressive.

Had a look online but can't find an example to show you. Think its the sculptural quality of the painting which suggested them.

Mam said...

Nyar Nyar everyone, I've seen it in the flesh andd it's **Great**

Hazel xx

Scott said...


For what it's worth;........:)

Yes;..I see this as very strong.
One of many useful adjectives to be used here.
Nevermind that the background is a similar color; that it's allowing you to "lose" some edges, which seems to be a useful aspect in most semi-representational work:)One or two small, simple strokes COULD define the edges of the hair, if you chose to do so.

Another positive is the fact that it feels like you are using enough paint! :)(A common problem with many artists; being stingy with the use of their materials. Oil paint has the ability to create beautiful sculptural effects, so why not make full use of the qualities of the medium, yes?)

On future work; a suggestion for your consideration: Softening a few more edges, while maintaining harder edges where effective may be a pleasant and useful tool to place in your artistic toolbox. Softening and losing some edges not only may enhance a certain sense of mystery in some areas of a painting; well as easing transitions from shadow to light:) Congratulations on finishing this piece, and I will look forward to stopping by more often in the future. Cheers! -Scott

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