Monday, April 22, 2013

Can it be a self-portrait if it doesn't look like me?

The answer is "YES" because when you're the artist, you can do whatever you want! Artistic liberty is a fantastic thing--something that, as I'm experimenting with different mediums and styles, all while trying to drop perfectionistic tendencies or expectations of greatness for myself, I'm finding freedom like I didn't know existed.
This image came to me as I was playing around with collage. Slowly, in my mind I began to see a person, then I created the leaves by painting around the papers glued underneath. The face was such a joy to paint, even though I had no idea what I was doing! I just knew I wanted her to have the feel of this drawing of a woman by Leonardo Da Vinci but with a modern look.  Mixing the colors to create flesh tones and highlights and shading was such a fun experiment! She doesn't look this jaundiced in person, thankfully. I enjoyed flowing with ideas as they came. I also liked that it turned out looking folk-artsy.
The idea of painting a crow came from being inspired by Edgar Allan Poe and the imagery of his taunting, visiting blackbird on his mantle, crying out, "nevermore", to the distress of the character in his story. Often, I feel like this character, trying to block out the taunting negative messages in our world--i.e.--The CROW. Only when I can learn to ignore the crow's voice, can I be free to live fully alive. 


The song that inspired this painting--while it was in formation:
Blackbird, by the Beatles (sung by Sarah McLaughlin):
Blackbird singing in the dead of nightTake these broken wings and learn to flyAll your lifeYou were only waiting for this moment to arise
Blackbird singing in the dead of nightTake these sunken eyes and learn to seeAll your lifeYou were only waiting for this moment to be free
Blackbird fly, blackbird flyInto the light of the dark black night
Blackbird fly, blackbird flyInto the light of the dark black night
Blackbird singing in the dead of nightTake these broken wings and learn to flyAll your lifeYou were only waiting for this moment to ariseYou were only waiting for this moment to ariseYou were only waiting for this moment to arise

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