For a long time, my relationship with drawing was a complicated one. Even though it’s something I’d do relatively well since I was a child, I would find little or no real enjoyment in the process, especially since I started to do this for a living. It all became mechanical, as though I was merely reproducing images, never really creating myself. If a drawing would take me more than one sitting, I would simply put it away and start a simpler one, whilst the sheets of unfinished works would continue to pile up along with my ever-growing frustration.
All of this changed only very recently, with the past three drawings I’ve made, including this very portrait. It changed when I learned to fall in love with both the process and the subject, and made it completely personal – from conception to varnishing, I devoted myself completely, not because I had to, but because I wanted to, because it meant something to me other than money or recognition. It’s something that is mine, all mine. It’s honest. All the time and labour that goes into it, from the first layer to the last, all the time spent obsessing over every single detail, rendering every fold and every hairline; it all went from boring and unimaginable to pleasantly satisfying when I learned to love it, and when made it mine.
Right now things feel very uncertain – it is far easier to make a living when you do things for others, when you do what others want you to, rather than what you want your own. Still, I’m too stubborn not to try. Even when people don’t really understand what I’m doing, or when I don’t really know how to profit over it, I want to continue to create things that are true of me, and I am jumping headfirst on this vision of being able not only to stand for self-expression, but to actually make a living out of something I love, and being able to truly love what I do. If this comes to be, I’ll be the happiest human alive.
@elloportrait @elloart #drawing