Stacy is my neighbor from 15B. Stacy is a happy person, cheerful, earnest and expressive. She was very pleased to model for me, and we spend some time visiting, chatting and snapping pictures. She is an experienced model. We have another artist in our building, Michael, an art photographer – Stacy sat for him in the past, and so knew what to expect and what to do.
As a result I had a great selection of references: happy Stacy, posing Stacy, glamorous Stacy, Stacy being clever or amused or coy, she is such an actress – so many expressions. But this Stacy the Drama Queen is my favorite. Here Stacy is distressed over the state of Illinois politics. How do you choose between a thief, a liar and a clinically insane? – she asked me rhetorically. Tough choice indeed. When I brought this question to my husband, he chose a thief. Personally I prefer clinically insane, they all are just that to be in politics. But I am getting to be way too cynical here, and we have voted already anyway.
Stacy’s shirt deserves a word. Usually I am quite loose about drawing clothes in my portraits. I change colors and designs, inverse lights and darks, and use clothes to support what is going in the face without a second thought. Last week however we had a little discussion on WetCanvas about taking artistic license to sitter’s clothes. A little factoid came out: one of the very few commissioned portraits by Modigliani – the Amazon – was refused by the sitter, baroness Marguerite de Hasse de Villiers, not because of the “distorted” likeness, but because Modigliani painted her jacket yellow instead of red. I was so bewildered by this that I took pains to draw Stacy’s blouse exactly. The psychedelic pattern quickly cured me of my temporary insanity.
#27 of 40. Graphite, Moleskine Cahier sketchbook