Saturday, March 15, 2008

Mixed Media Portraiture

I teach a class called Mixed Media Portraiture through Continuing Studies @ MECA and I ask the models to bring in personal items to share with the class. This gives the students some interesting information to use in making the models' portraits. The models have told me that they find this very enjoyable and are glad that the students actually want to know their names and something about them. They have brought in a great variety of stuff, from a boat's oar, to the ukekele you see in the portrait posted here. One young woman brought her guitar and sang us a song she'd written. I suggest to the students that they can use this information in many ways: they might literally represent an object, or use it in an obscure or even abstract manner within the portrait. It might simply inform color choice.

These are a couple of demo drawings I did during one class last fall. This model had a head of unruly hair when he posed for my Mixed Media Portraiture class, and when he came to my studio to model for my girls' portraiture class, he looked a bit different! The top two photos show a couple of my young students with their drawings of Westin, the model (aren't they terrific?).

Westin with Ukelele, 2007
charcoal on Rives BFK, 22" x 30"

Westin, 2007
charcoal on Rives BFK, 15" x 20". For Sale.

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