Confession: I stare at people, mostly women. I think people are so interesting and beautiful. Whereever I am, I catch myself staring. I also love sifting through old photographs while thrifting. I usually unearth some wildly humorous photos perfect for personal letters or cards, interesting compositions, or unforgettable faces that inspire untold stories and pictures.
It never occurred to me that my interest in people was odd. More so, that many people aren't entirely comfortable hanging a picture, drawn, painted, or photographed, of a stranger in their collection of artwork and prints. I've been told by someone, " Your work looks like they are actual people to me but I don't know them so it makes it weird to hang on my wall." Having heard many people comment similarly to this, I wonder, aren't all human subjects used for artwork "actual people"? Why are my actual people any different from the actual people that grace so many other portraits?
There are countless portraits of famous actors and actresses, iconic artists, historic figures, and mysterious lads and lasses captured by artists throughout history. For the most part, most of us do not personally know the subject or the artist, but they are certainly actual people. Yet we welcome the imagery into our homes, onto out walls, on cards, cups, and all things in between and it's not considered weird.
Must we know about the person in the portrait to like it? Do they have to be an icon? Does the person have to be someone we idealize? Could it be the mystery of not knowing the person in the portrait what intrigues us? Am I the only person who collects portraits of strangers where the subject and artist are unknown. Are the portraits I create different because I myself am an unknown artist (in comparison to the big wigs) with unknown subjects. It's a possibility, but I really have no idea.
It seems that for most people an iconic figure must in some way feel familiar, as though the subject were a friend or acquaintance, since we are so frequently exposed to them. I could see that making it much easier to welcome the imagery into your own intimate space. Would you prefer to hang a Marilyn or a Norma Jeane on your wall?
♥ Miss Bojambo
Leave a Reply.
I created this space to showcase my past work, chronicle my current projects, and share my inspiration.