I think with any repeated exercise, it’s inevitable that you will form and notice habits and patterns. I’m noticing my own habits and patterns in making these self-portraits. I’ve been drawing Marianna’s face so much that I can now come to expect certain kinds of forms in certain facial expressions. I’m so well acquainted with those forms that I’ve come to rely on them as a guide in several of the portraits. At the same time, these habits also signal to me that I’m getting comfortable with certain aspects of these portraits, which can quickly descend into boredom. I’m constantly pressing myself ways to keep things fresh and new to keep this from happening. I think the next big step will be to introduce hands into the portraits. I was indecisive at first about whether I would want to keep the images to faces only, but I got some amazing hand shots of Marianna that are just too good to pass up. It will be new territory, which is exactly what I’m looking for.
I did the first pass of etching ink on Self-Portrait No. 13 earlier this week: