The drawing I use to identify this blog is a self-portrait, and I think artists might enjoy knowing how I made it. When I made it, however, shall remain a mystery.
The drawing is graphite (pencil) on blue Italian paper (Magnani Pescia paper). I made the drawing by looking in a mirror, which of course is the interesting part. The mirror, which happened to be a bathroom cabinet mirror, is perpendicular to a little wall. So I taped my paper to the wall and hand held a second mirror to reflect my profile so that I could see it and draw. Holding the mirror was tricky. Holding the pose wasn’t easy either. And my drawing hand got quite a work-out also, since I had to keep my arm up-raised the entire time, since the drawing paper was level with my head.
So, I’m particularly proud of this drawing. For me it represents the way that art can be very truthful (that’s how I really looked) and quite indirect, at several removes from reality, all at the same time. Since it’s a reflection of a reflection the mirror’s affect of reversal is neutralized, making this a really quite accurate portrait. (Self-portraits are usually reversals of what the artist looks like, in that the left side of the artist’s face appears on the right side of the mirror, etc.)
You can get something of the same effect, with less effort and discomfort, using a vanity mirror, one of those three part things with hinges on the outer mirrors. But not having one of those, I found my own solution.
So, artists, you’ve always got a model to draw as long as you’ve got a mirror. And there are many facets to your self image — if I may say so. Have a wack at some of the different views. Rembrandt had fun with his portrait, doing his in inventive ways, sometimes in fancy costumes. Funny hats are good. They worked for him. He also enjoyed making faces. So, go with the masters!