the First part of the Frida experiment

So far I have found myself trying to draw Frida in a portrait style – not that this is my goal but I feel I want to get to ‘know’ her face and presence first. (also watching documentaries) Whether or not something that I like will come of all this fussing around, I do not know, but it feels right.

I have also spent an incredible amount of time pouring over other artists impressions or designs of Frida. Most seem to centre on the Iconic image while others make an offering of love through their art or seek to honour her story. Plenty are awful but the majority succeed in creating another way of approaching Frida, with originality, sensitivity and skill.

I wish that there were lots of photographs of her smiling with her teeth visible. For some reason she seems more exposed in these few shots that I have managed to find.

Her usual way of being comfortable with the camera is to hold herself behind her mouth and eyes– as if she gives permission and patience to the camera as long as it respects her way of being beautiful and being seen. (I am not speaking of vanity here, but of Frida’s way of sharing her full possession of herself.)

When you see her teeth, she seems to leak out all over the place – like a little damn bursting inside a happy child, excited and vulnerable, even her eyes completely change. In them is a fleeting delight and shyness at being seen. I think these few photos (and footage) are the most lovely of all.

There is also another angle which I feel increasingly drawn to, those of her own self portraits –

To draw Frida, as Frida draws herself, but to be the one drawing…interesting circle.

Lastly, it is impossible to not draw oneself into a portrait of another – impossible

creating an added twist which is the most interesting of all;

When I draw someone carefully and give myself to the drawing, that persons image becomes a part of me, as if they are family or a loved one – I cannot help it, It happens every single time. To do good work, I must invest and love and mull over and over – tying myself into a strange bond.

This is not a problem until I stumble upon a picture of the one I drew, or a photograph, or even bump into them – then there is immediately feelings of intimacy surrounding the meeting and it can throw me for quite a loop till I remember that I had drawn them once…….

I felt I was getting ‘somewhere’

frida compare

in this one, I uploaded my pencil sketch and did some more drawing via my tablet on Photoshop…..

Hoards of horses

I was inspired today to spend some more time drawing, painting and perfecting one of my favorite subjects – yes, horses. These are of course stylized to the hilt and that’s fine. But back in the day, when dreams of being an artist were contained in my little girl heart, I thought everything should be ultra realistic…..Now, I happily disagree.

Enjoy 🙂1-painted pony horse 001-001

5 horses prance

1-grey silver jumping horse 001 2-silver prancing black horse 0013-hand detailed rocking horse design 001  4-flying ornate horse 001

One for you

ImageI don’t know about you but I tend to fixate on parts of a picture and then feel lost as to its surrounds. One way to help overcome this has been to cut out the individual pieces and then worry about lay out later. I can move them around and then build a scene using collage. A helpful tool to deal with road blocks!

Here are a few unfinished things that I have been playing with. If I finish it, I will call it ‘One for you’



I finally feel that I am getting the hang of ‘colouring’ faces properly. For the longest time a decent skin tone or hue just baffled me. No matter what I did, it was hit and miss. When I felt that it worked, I couldn’t understand why and when I felt that it didn’t, I was no more the wiser.

Lately I have begun colouring faces by laying down a sort of mustard yellow, and then building up pinks and whites with pencil over the top – So far, this combination is moving me further down the road toward what I find pleasing.

Being an artist is being ‘a work in progress’. Not so much about the outcome but the ability to try and try again, make loads of little errors and embrace it all with a spirit of understanding and co-operation. When I look to other artists that are well established at a level that I aspire to, I remember that they all probably started out their journey with a basic talent and desire that probably didn’t look much different to mine. That’s an encouraging way for me to look at it. 🙂
Here is a simple but beautiful drawing/painting of an Angel. Inspired by the coming Christmas season.
ANGEL full res signiature

here is a link to some other heads and faces that I’ve done over the years.