It was nice to finally do a self-portrait in oils, because that's really my primary medium under normal circumstances. But for various reasons (namely some little hands belonging to curious little people in my house), I made the choice to avoid using oil paint until I could work in the studio when my painting class resumed during the spring semester.
Time and time again, I have discovered the benefits of making art in the presence of my students. At the very least, it provides them with a real demonstration of one possible technique for making paintings. Furthermore, I think there's a lot to be said about the credibility of an art instructor that is actually making art! Granted, most college-level teachers are either required or strongly advised to make their own art, but there are always horror stories of teachers who can instruct, but cannot make their own work.
The panel is actually the remnants of an old sign. I think the effects are pretty great, and ultimately I might add more of a background to this painting. It was also challenging to paint over the slick paint of the lettering, as opposed to the rougher surface of the chipping white paint.
I should also point out the obvious: yes, I painted myself bald and beardless. In order to speed up the painting process, I used my artistic license to paint only the essentials!
#97 January 25, 2011, Oil on wood panel