I forgot my keys to the studio and no one was around, so here I am. Do you think this has happened to the huge artists through out history? Can you imagine Da Vinci having a fit not being able to get into his own atelier? That be a hilarious in my opinion, but knowing him he’d do some renaissance Batman maneuver by entering through a trap door or use a go-go gadget belt. Instead of yelling in a public square, I get to type my nonsense on here because the future.
This was a tricky portrait and not for technical reasons. I took a break from working on her for a while due to moving around along with other projects. Coming back to this piece was the real challenge. I felt I had a different mindset and my skill level shifted. What that means is I was trying to wrestle with matching the previous energy I had back when I started this portrait compared to now. Conflict is too strong of a word, but I’d say inner conundrum. It’s too easy to get lost in a loop working over and over again trying to get it to match how you’re feeling now. When people ask me if I’d go back to a painting after it’s finished, the answer is always no. She needed to be completed. That doesn’t mean I’m not proud of it or it’s “lesser” than my other portraits. It’s just one of those transition works in my collection. She reminds me of an earlier version of Paris that makes me very happy. There’s a duality of emotion and time that comes into play. Nostalgia, intimacy, and acceptance. I can’t tell you how hard it is saying goodbye to a portrait, let alone one that is loaded with a lot of personal memory. A chapter concluded with this piece on a personal level.
Art that puts you to the test like this every once in a while is great. You can’t just stay in your comfort zone. Although this painting is hanging up where I can see it everyday, I still miss her. I do feel more inclined to focus on my next two portraits at the moment. Maybe it’s a desire created from Covid, but I want to ride that wave for as long as I can. Not to count my bear furs before I go hunting, but I have a good feeling about my next two portraits. I’m excited about them. That’s a feeling you tend to savour more and more as you grow up being an artist. Painting faces is fucking dope.