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Sunday, February 21, 2010

You're a Nice Kid, but You're Cross-eyed

In the studio bright and early this morning, I went straight for Honey's head. I've been working with little spots of color and glazes since seven thirty to get a likeness that looks like the subject and appears effortless. It's mid afternoon now and it hasn't happened. Honey just doesn't look himself. He looks contrived, cross-eyed and in pain. I better put him to bed.

This is the difference between landscape and portrait painting: the precision of brushstrokes. If you don't get the tree exactly where it is in the woods, who cares?
But if the mouth's off, the chin is too short and the eye's are crossed in a portrait of a loved one, everyone is going to let the artist know--if she didn't catch it herself. Portraiture requires a very critical eye.

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