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Portraiture

Faces are complex patterns. They are built of bone, lots of tiny muscles, pockets of soft tissues, and covered in porous skin. Artists use scientific knowledge of anatomy and mathematical knowledge of symmetry when drawing and painting portraiture.
by

Kristen Woodie

on 15 July 2011

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Transcript of Portraiture

"I build a painting by putting little marks together--some look like hot dogs, some like doughnuts." - Chuck Close "Everything in my work
is determined by my learning disabilities.
Face blindness-
I'm sure I was driven to paint portraits by being face-blind." Chuck Close "I have trouble in a global sense with the whole. But, if you break it down into small enough bite size units, then I make this BIG overwhelming problem into thousands of little more solveable problems. I've just found a way to take my deficits and use them." When you go up to look at a
Chuck Close painting really closely,
a detail of it, there is a sense of
confusion because you can't read it.
When you step back these very
abstract flat little cells merge
and become the face.

Here is how he builds it up:
He takes a photograph first, and
then he graphs it. Then he draws the
graph onto his canvas too.
The cells allow him to work on one
box at a time.

He goes to each one of the
boxes and transfers the contents to his canvas. By the time he is
finished there is extrordinary detail. How Chuck Plays Into His Strengths -Chuck Close Self Portraits A self portrait is an artist's image of themself. Since you look at your own face every day you should know what it looks like, but that does not make this task easy! In fact, this task is very complex and can be very emotional.
When you go to draw your face you may find that what happens on your paper makes you feel uncomfortable or upset. You will notice that it takes a lot of little details and measurements to make the marks on a peice of paper look like you.

We will talk about our project in a few minutes. Lets take a look at the work of a well known American portrait artist- Chuck Close. Our Project 1. Study the math facts of faces
2. Map out a basic face
3. Use a mirror to make the features look like your own
4. Study cross-hatch shading
5. Apply color to the self portrait A portrait is an image of a real person
that captures their likeness.

Portrait artists typically use photography, drawing and/or painting.
Their studios might be set-up for controlled lighting and with furniture for the models to pose. This just does
not look like me. . . This is a
self portrait. This is
a
portrait of Roy. What is face blindness? Face blindness is a disability that some people have. People who are face blind cannot recognize the faces of the people that they know. When it is very severe they cannot even recognize their own face in a mirror.
This happens because there are special sections of our brains that are in charge of recognizing faces. The brain's facial recognition system
does an important job for us.
It catalogs the faces of the people that we meet.
It recognizes people instantly, so we don't usually have to ask ourselves, "Is that my mom or my sister?" Because of this system we just know
automatically. Since our minds automatically process faces,
we will take some time to study them.

The drawing you see here is a pattern that
maps out the distance between the features.

Those distances are almost exactly the same
on everyone's faces. The distance
measurements are the math facts of faces. The red lines you see here
mark the top, middle, and bottom
of the head.
Notice that the mid-line is where the
eyes are located. The green and blue lines create a grid
like the one that Chuck Close uses.

Look at the boxes. What fits into a box?
How many boxes are there?
Look at the lines. What parts are connected by the blue lines? What parts are connected by green lines? Lets look at the eyes, nose, and mouth.
Full transcript