A Little Self Reflection


It’s always a strange experience painting yourself - aside from the immediate fact that it does force you to literally analyse yourself which brings lots of memories and emotions into play .... there’s the additional problem that you know your own reflected image better than you know your own face - which is why seeing yourself in photos is always such a strange affair! You end up with the skewed impression that it’s the photo image which is flipped rather than your bathroom mirror reflection.

I think whilst trying to capture a likeness than I felt looked most like me, I have indadvertedly strayed towards avatar territory! So now I’m wondering, if this painting is part portrait, part avatar - does that make it an ‘avatrait’? Have I just created a new artform? Lol. Happy New Year A :- )

Tiny painting - very hard to do so well done. Doesn't look very Avartarish (excuse the pun) but looks good to me and I like the bakcground shot too.

Great 'in the moment' feel. Nice one.

Very nice. paintings of that size, which come up larger on my computer, are tricky to get a likeness. This looks good, I hope you are pleased with it.

Posted by Bob Ward on Wed 13 Jan 12:46:54

Thanks so much Heather - I am loving all this new vocab by the way! - yes, I agree that the little reflection in the background is my favourite thing ... a little bit of serendipity which also helped me with the title :- )

Thank you Fen, yes I liked the feeling it had of being an instant ‘selfie’ ... even if it took me a lot longer than that to recreate in paint! Thank you for your lovely comment, that’s really very much appreciated :- )

Thank you Bob, yes I am very happy with it on the whole, it’s always so hard to assess your own paintings anyway, let alone self portraits! It took me a few days to be brave enough to post this, whereas normally I share a painting as soon as it is finished. The good news is I only paint self portraits every five years or so, so I can relax for a bit now! Yes, you are completely right, the original is only postcard sized, so seeing it big - even on an ipad - does make a huge difference. That’s a good point Bob, and one which I hadn’t considered :- )

Thank you so much for posting your comment John :-) Very much appreciated!

Very good portrait Andrea.

Great work for such a small painting. Love the background and your interesting, appealing, features Andrea.

Thank you Sandra, much appreciated! :- )

Thanks Christine :- ) It’s a bit weird seeing yourself in paint in the POL gallery. Not sure I will be doing one every year (like the artist on the recent Sky Artist of the Year series)!

Thank you for your lovely comments Carole, I think those features may have been artistically enhanced in my bid to counteract the rather dark ‘A Shadow of My Former Self’ though! So hard to get an accurate balance of tones as well as keep a likeness. Self portraits are definitely the most challenging genre in my humble opinion! Thanks for commenting :-)

Thank you Maureen, very kind of you :-)

Lovely Andrea.

Thank you so much Sue, very much appreciated :- )

Hang on Studio Wall

My New Year’s resolution was to paint a present-day self portrait - to update ‘Vintage Dress’ and to counter-react the deliberately dark ‘A Shadow of My Former Self’ The result is ‘A Little Self Reflection: 2021’ A tiny 4.5 x 5.5 inches, oil on gessobord. (More background info follows in the comments)

About the Artist
Andrea Hook

I have always loved art and as a child I would frequently be found drawing the trees in the garden. I first worked as a graphic designer and illustrator in London and Dorset for fifteen years. One of my favourite posts was illustrating natural-history display-boards in watercolour & ink for Dorset…

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