Oregon writer, Rain Trueax, and Oregon painter, Diane Widler Wenzel co-author Rainy Day Thought. Diane generally posts on Wednesdays and Rain on Saturdays. There may be extra days or changes as situations warrant. Comments are always welcome and appreciated as it turns an article into a discussion.

Friday, June 09, 2006

Self portrait

Natalie at Blaugustine presented the idea for a group of people doing a self portrait digitally. She was inspired by another blog which led to some rules for anyone who is interested in attempting this for fun. I gather after reading the rules here that the self-portraits can now be done in any medium you choose. Well for all I know they always could be.

The first time I painted my self portrait, I wasn't even 30; and the painting easily looked 50 and very much like a witch-- which, of course, I can look like now and again anyway. I had the courage to enter it in the county fair and as I recall, they hid it behind a pillar. It did not get a ribbon.

Since then I have drawn myself a few times, painted myself now and then-- sometimes not on purpose, but the one above is the first I have attempted digitally.

Where I have adequate control with pen, charcoal and paint, I had almost zero (not a whole lot more now) using the mouse and Corel's assortments of tools. The program I used had limited colors-- I am not really bright pink. Anyway it was fun and if you want to try this, follow the yellow brick road to Natalie's site-- Blaugustine and let them know where yours is.


Natalie said...

Rain, wow, how glamorous. You say you had no control of the medium but it looks fine to me. Don't stop now, keep doing more and tell Wally (Sparky) to put you on his list - I'm not doing any organising!
BTW, my blog is spelled Blaugustine (as in Augustine's blog). Just a small correction. :)

Rain said...

oops on the spelling. And the control problem for me is I have familial tremors which means shakiness basically and with a brush or things like that I just can do better than the mouse. Fortunately any unexpected twitch, and I could use undo-- something I don't have when I am painting... I don't know that I will do more than this one, but it'll be fun to see the ones others do. I always enjoy seeing artist's self-portraits.

Dick said...

Very nice. I wonder if you could pick it up in Photoshop and correct the skin color? I don't know what format your portrait is in now but Photoshop will open a lot of different formats.

How about using one of the drawing tablets? Have you ever tried them? It might be another tool you could use for your digital art.

You might also try using a track ball just to see if it might work better for you than a mouse.

Rain said...

Those were some good ideas, Dick and I might experiment with this some more. It could be useful to think about what might work in a painting where you aren't investing in a canvas and paints but instead is more like sand painting that the Navajo and several other cultures do as part of sacred work.

As I understand it, the object of the exercise is kind of what a self portrait might teach us about ourselves. It could be used to show inner parts of us that we weren't showing the world and get out through the exercise. I can see where trying to let that out could take some 'letting' go. They don't have to look like you so much or even be nice looking. Go to that link for the 'rules' and check out his latest 'self-portrait.'

It's an interesting process, which frankly I hadn't thought of as such, for self exporation. How do we see ourselves? Can we release that feeling to let others see it?

Sonia said...

I love the self portrait. Very beautiful!

Ingineer66 said...

You did a great job. I really like it.

Winston said...

A stylus and tablet can provide far closer control and feel much more like you are accustomed to with pencil on paper. A good one of reasonable size is not cheap, but probably, for you, a worthwhile investment.

Rain said...

I appreciate the comments on this subject by you all. I had not heard of the stylus and tablet idea, Winston but probably won't go for it as although I like this whole thing for getting ideas for paintings or trying out color schemes-- now that I have gotten the gist of how to do it-- but I don't see giving up canvas and paints. I like working that way too much-- plus I can get bigger. I guess this could be printed onto canvas but then you'd only have a giclee. It's an interesting way to experiment though and got addictive this week-end until my eyes and back said enough! I put 5 of them onto my painting site for those who still have that bookmarked-- along with a new painting. For anyone who does not have that site, email me and I'll be happy to give it to you.