I’ve always been crap at making portraits.
In theory, you could really make a portrait with astonishing similarities in 2 or 3 lines or brush strokes. Ever seen the work of David Downton? He’s the master of portraits.
It’s all a matter of catching the right particular that makes that face unique.
And nope, I can’t.
I start correcting and correcting the sketch so many times in order to make it better and I end up with a face that doesn’t even resemble the original anymore.
Which is pretty frustrating when all friends ask you a portrait for their birthday or Christmas and you have to say “I don’t think I can, you know, I’m pretty shitty at portraiting people” and they think it’s an excuse because you don’t want to do it or because they think you think they’re ugly (aaaah women and their insecurities) and in the end they just hate you. Pffff.
But there are girls, famous girls I mean, that I really admire and sometimes I find myself fantasizing about how I would draw them. Which colors would I choose? Which pose? And which mood would I try to convey?
So I decided to stop this portrait-dread that I have and try and paint these girls. I take it as an exercise to get better at reproducing people’s faces and maybe be able to finally make a friend happy with a portrait soon.
First up is Léa Seydoux.
I kinda like everything about her. She is a living contrast, and yet she looks like a perfect balance. Fragility and toughness, feminine and masculine, sexiness and innocence… And of course I love how she translates this complexity into the characters she plays on the screen. Her version of Emma in “Blue is the warmest color” is one of the most intense perfomances I’ve ever seen (together with that of Adèle Exarchopoulos of course, that duo was incredible).
As you can see, indeed the resemblance of my drawing with Léa is not so striking…. But I tried! In my defense, I think it’s very hard to render all her coolness (still I’m sure David Downton would have been able to catch it :p).
I’ll try to make a series out of the “All the cool girls” illustrations. I have already three more portraits in mind (a bit crazy, all French girls!). I would really like to see if I can get better at portraits and making a series out of it seems like a good way to exercise 😉
Are there any cool girls you would like me to try to paint? Who are your icons? I’m curious!