The Ancient Romans were so incredibly skillful at creating a likeness in portraiture that they felt they needed a new "challenge" in the art-making. This challenge came in the form of adding the element of the subject's personality, in addition to simply what they looked like. This was a huge step forward from the idealized figures of the Ancient Greeks; true, their sculpture was skillfully crafted, but merely resembled the subjects and would be difficult to be labeled as "realism."
This trend continued with the artists of the Baroque era, who stretched beyond the idealized faces and figures of Renaissance art. One of the best was Rembrandt (whose self-portraiture is an influence on this project), who emphasized his subjects' personalities and emotions perhaps even moreso than their likenesses.
I have been accused of being a moody, grouchy person. And I'll admit that I have an occasional bad day - hell, we all do. And I will also admit that the appearance of my self-portraits have tended to perpetuate that notion a lot of the time. I've often explained that this is simply the way I choose to portray myself on any given day. But today was different: a particular chain of events led me from being merely irritated, to downright angry, and then all the way back to nearly ecstatic. And that is when this portrait was made.
But aside from that situation, I think this self-portrait probably captures me perhaps better than the vast majority of the previous artworks in this project. I don't take too many things seriously and am always ready to make a joke or quote a goofy line from a movie. I prefer to be light-hearted and am an extreme optimist.
In other words, this is pretty much the real me...
#195 May 3, 2011, Ink