Faces: Dogs, People—A Little Project IX

June 30, 2012

120606AManLeft: Sketch using Faber-Castel Pitt Artist's Calligraphy pen on a page in a 9 x 12 inch Fabriano Venezia journal.

Some faces don't have a lot of symmetry. This man, sketched from a mugshot had very interesting ears. (I think the eye condition was congenital. The photo didn't look like he'd recently had a beating.)

Our society spends a lot of time worshipping symmetry and maintains certain "standards" of beauty, such as impossibly large eyes, painfully thin women, and a rather odd puppy-dog expression on most young male models or actors.

I find imperfections a lot more interesting to observe and sketch.

    • Dana
    • June 30, 2012

    I immediately think of Stephen Colbert. His face is symmetrical but certainly not his ears… not to mention that eyebrow thing he does.

    I’m not very familiar with the author but this is a favorite quote from Charles Baudelaire: “Strangeness is the indispensable condiment of all beauty.”

    … how very wabi-sabi of him… and you. Great portraits Roz!

  1. Reply

    Dana, I love Stephen Colbert. And I think he is so adorably cute, especially because of the ears (which he often has called attention to). I would amend Baudelaire to include not just strangeness (which I would interpret to include quirkiness) but also humor. People with wit and insight always have beauty which comes from that vitality.

    Glad you’ve been enjoying the portraits!


  2. Reply

    I agree absolutely, Roz! My first husband was anything but handsome, but I loved to sketch him. Interestingly many other artists I knew did too…

  3. Reply

    Kate, he probably was also a patient model? Or did you sketch him surreptitiously?

    I am always a bit “leery” of conventionally good looking people, and they have no appeal as drawing subjects. They seem rather bland to me. I like features that say something about a person, and of course eyes. (I bet he had great eyes.)

    In fact the only really beautiful being I’ve ever spent any time sketching was Dottie. She redeemed herself by having great eyes with soul and intelligence.

    I hope you are staying cool this warm weekend, and getting some painting done!

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