Coffee with Strangers number 5 and 6

023 030I am really loving making these portraits. Over the last two months, I’ve been thinking a lot about gestures and the way they animate the person in question. For both of these models, I have static just sitting pictures as well as shifting, conversational ones. I’ve noticed that once people start talking, their posture and presence transforms. It’s incredible; when I just talk to other people I barely notice it, but doing these portraits, it’s almost like I’m looking at two different people.

I’ve started to be a little more aggressive with the three dimensional dissonance- both of these texture placement that work contrary to the lines of the figure itself. I’m excited that the one on the right still is identifiable as a woman. In the past, the texture I’ve put in the faces of women has acted almost like additional lines, aging all the women I’ve done until they’re 40, 50, or 60. This woman (I think) stays young, but also has a lot of interesting things going on.

I’ve been using heavy primary colors along with subtler boundary lines their complement. The gentleman on the left, especially. I’ve also been using off shades of color complements to try to off set the confidence that primary colors come with. The man painting uses a weird balance of pink and turquoise, which worked in a way I’m happy with.

In general, I feel as though this series is getting stronger. The model I’ve used on the last three has let me complete the paintings (relatively) quickly while still putting in the attention I rely on to even complete paintings. I’m excited, I really feel that anyone could be a good painting. I also am really enjoying hands. Once again, I’m having a hard time locking down inside myself what these paintings accomplish in terms of meaning- it’s not what I was doing with buildings at all, I don’t think. It’s been powerful in my personal life to interact positively with strangers. I’ve felt more restful and prayerful doing this project. I think those are the boundaries of whatever meaning/state these paintings have in me. I’m really encouraged by these two and I’m excited to keep going.

I am really thankful for the support of my community and, if you’re reading this, I really enjoy people seeing these paintings. Let me know what you think.

Thanks,

Nathan

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