Painting portraits of people is a chance to interact with the sitter, but the end product will always be an imposed point of view by the artist through their marks and visions. From my own experience, the process is a one-sided conversation, where the subject doesn’t get a say in how they want to be seen or interpreted. They entrust in the artist to give that point of view. My question: is the exercise of painting a portrait truly an interactive experience in this context?
The rise in selfies indicate the desire to express oneself and impose one’s own point of view to the world. Along with this, I’d like to take advantage of this desire and experiment a two-sided conversation through portraiture. The best way to know someone is by listening to their stories. And I want to hear people’s stories through their self portraits.
For this series, I’ve asked a few friends to participate by taking their own self portraits, and only share with me those they feel truly represent how they want to be seen. I will then interpret them into paintings, layering my own views on top. My hope is to create something that represent a conversation between ourselves through portraiture, and have fun in the process together.
Anything that compel a person to capture themselves in that moment is worth taking a look. These micro-visions of ourselves are highly important to our sense of self. I really appreciate everyone who is brave enough to participate and entrust their stories to me. This is an on-going series. More than 50 friends have submitted their selfies and I am enjoying getting to know them closely. I hope you enjoy the end-product of our interactions.