I have fifty pages to go on my first hardcopy read-thru of my novel, and a multitude of edits to be made starting next week. But throughout this week, I alternated between being a writer and a portrait artist.
If you follow my blog, you know that my self-reward for “finishing” this novel was to paint a portrait of my character Jalal. I used graphite on paper, but because I use multiple layers and fine detail, this can properly be called a painting.
There are three reasons I’m not completely satisfied with this portrait, and though I say that about every portrait I create, only one reason is because of my perfectionism. That reason is that this is not quite the image I intended to capture. It started out the way I wanted, but kept shifting slightly … sort of like the novel! So it’s entirely possible that at some time in the future, I will try harder to capture my true image of Jalal.
The other two valid reasons I’m dissatisfied are that I was out of my favorite paper and used a substitute that did not give me the result I expected in the skin texture. Plus, this is the first work I’ve done since I broke my hand last summer and because my newly crooked little finger alters the way I normally hold a pencil, I had some trouble adjusting.
I’m also dissatisfied with the digital image of the actual portrait. I’m not only a bad photographer, but I have a horrible digital camera for photographing artwork. Graphite is hard to photograph anyway because of the sheen, but even with manipulation, the contrast in this image is off and it’s too pixelated.
All that being said, if you’d care to see my image of Jalal click here.