Sunday, December 26, 2010

Three Penny Opera

Three Penny Opera,  9" x 12" charcoal and watercolor on paper

Purchase this drawing  here.

Sunday, December 19, 2010


Hazel, 10" x 14", charcoal and watercolor on paper

The eyes have it. The hazel eyes..........

I've been assembling a reference cache of vintage black and white photos of women from nearly a century ago. They are typically unsmiling and serious. None of the "cheese" smiles we're all so used to flashing these days when we have our picture taken. Capturing one's likeness on film used to be a serious business.

I guess that is why I'm drawn to them.

And want to draw them.

You can buy this original drawing here.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

I've Just Seen a Face

I've Just Seen a Face, 10" x 14" ink and watercolor on paper

You may purchase this original drawing here.

Monday, December 06, 2010

Go Ask Alice

Alice, 10" x 14" ink and watercolor on paper

This is Alice, a friend of one of my daughters. I'd planned to really layer on the color after the initial ink drawing ---

But after the first pale washes of color, I thought it looked just perfect as it was.  She has an angelic, beatific face with a lovely Roman nose, a face of another century.

What do you think, shall I stop or add more color?

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Three Faces of Eve


Version 1
Untitled, 10" x 14" ink on paper

Using the same reference, I came up with three very different versions of a face.  Same technique, lots of water on the paper, and the results got looser and looser each time.

I was only going to post one of these but I think it's interesting to see the progression from first to last. I'm kind of partial to the third and last one ---

Version 2

Untitled, 10" x 14" ink on paper


Version 3

Untitled, 10" x 14" ink on paper

I've been poring over the work of Marlene Dumas lately which inspired me to experiment. Her portraiture can be quite disturbing and off-putting. 

Which is why I like her, of course.

You can see some of her work here.  

I was particularly interested her different portraiture series, such as the 95 portraits in Models  and the 21 images in Jesus Serene.

She used the same technique of working wet-into-wet but I've come to realize now that she worked up a lot of the crisp detail in the weird portraits with pencil or graphite. The result -  her soupy faces would have the occasional sharp piercing eyes or teeth, making them even more strange.

I love her work, I love the strange.