Self-Portrait , 2017, pastel, 16 3/4" x 21 1/2"

Musings on the Self-Portrait

Art, Blog, Creative, Creativity and Art, hilary zaloom, pastel, pastel art, pastel drawing, pastel painting

So the portrait is done and delivered to the gallery.  I find that I have a very different feeling about it than I would if it were a still-life, or a portrait of somebody else, or just about other subject matter. Part of that stems, I think,  from it feeling rather strange to portray myself. I have never taken or even thought about taking a “selfie”. It’s just not something that ever comes to mind. I guess it feels a bit narcissistic and that feeling flows into how I feel about this self-portrait, just a bit odd.

In some ways how I feel about it is similar to that feeling one has sometimes after a conversation, of wanting to say, “That’s not quite what I meant,” or “I’m not finished – I have more to say.”   I haven’t done a self-portrait before, so I don’t know if everyone feels that way.

Getting There

Art, Blog, Creative, Creativity and Art, pastel, pastel art, pastel drawing, pastel painting

We act as though comfort and luxury were the chief requirements of life. All that we need to make us happy is something to be enthusiastic about.

Albert Einstein

I have been crazy nervous about this self-portrait.  Part of it is just the fact that it feels so exposing to do a self-portrait  Certainly I’ve never thought to myself that I’d be doing a one.  I can’t decide if I’m glad Jane asked me to do one or not.  The jury’s still out – I see-saw from liking it to being really uncomfortable with it.

But I’m loving working on it as if it’s my actual job.  How jealous I am of those who can do this full-time.  I remember watching the documentary about Andy Goldsworthy, where he would kiss his wife goodbye in their kitchen and head out with his bag to go lie down in the driveway, let it rain all around his silhouette, then photograph the dry spot where his body had been.  I thought then, “I want his job!”  Well, maybe not the lying down in the drive part.  But I am calmer and generally so much happier after after a day of drawing than a day of work or even just a day of “leisure”.