Four years ago, I started a series of portraits inspired by a quote from Chuck Palahniuk's Invisible Monsters: "Nothing of me is original. I am the combined effort of everyone I've ever known." This series would feature portraits of friends and family members who have had a great impact on me, and have made me into their 'combined effort.'
But, once my first-year painting class ended, and my other courses, art pieces and life in general started taking over, this project got put on hold. For a long time. I've had an unfinished portrait of my friend sitting in my studio for about three years now. Finally, yesterday, I took out my paints and paintbrushes, and got to work.
The thing with me is, although it takes me forever to get around to painting, once I start I just can.not.stop. So I worked on it, whenever I could, until I finished it this afternoon.
Before I started yesterday, all I had was her face and half her hair done. Thankfully, I had done the hardest parts three years ago!
This is by far the best out of all my portraits. I've done one of my grandmother, one of an old friend, one of my cousins and one of my aunt, uncle and cousin. My older portraits are a little wonky, but I think it's always great to appreciate the progress.
Update: This series started with an idea that grew out of a quote from Chuck Palahniuk – “Nothing of me is original. I am the combined effort of everyone I've ever known” – and would end with a self-portrait. However, when I finished this painting I realizing I loved it because of its spirit. I loved the image of my friend with her hair caught in a marshmallow. And so, it has now developed into girlz: a portrait series of girls having fun, being silly, and looking badass. Stay tuned for new portraits! These are up next: