100 days of Cementing My Style at 100%

8x10 digital collage of gouache and ink on paper, Self-portrait

8x10 digital collage of gouache and ink on paper, Self-portrait

Am I done? Is my style cemented? Would I do it again? Was it worth it?
No, no, yes and absolutely yes.

I thought it appropriate to end the 100 days of Cementing My Style with a self portrait and reflection.
I haven’t done very many of those and to be honest, I got cocky and thought I could whip it in no time. So I picked up a pen and started to draw with a photo reference. It didn’t go so well. It didn’t go well for the first 10 attempts, and I have drawn a few faces before. I traced, I scaled, I did all the techniques I could think of. Then I paused to observe, that did the trick.

I knew I wanted a simple, but resembling portrait. So, simplifying features was the goal. I found a beautiful hair rendition in one of Rebecca Green illustrations and used it as a reference. I used Rie Muñoz background lines popping to the front to give the nose, chin, and eyebrows definition. I also love the non-borderline approach so I had to use it in my shirt.

For the background the first idea was a chalkboard (I literally painted the paper with chalkboard paint) and used ink for the white lines. It was too busy for the back, so I re-did it in a softer color paper.

What I thought I could do in an evening extended for days. My 100 days took me 6 months, but I did it!

The results mark a great milestone. I’ve been seeking direction, and what is clear now is that I CAN. I can dedicate time to something that is important to me, I can produce more than I ever thought possible. I can do things my own way. I can figure out what that way is slowly. I can give myself many permissions. I can make mistakes. I can learn from those mistakes. I can create a possible ripple.

And I know YOU CAN TOO!