Self Portrait (Continued)

I have been busy with a few other projects and after some time away from this painting I decided to make a couple changes: most significantly, the position of the right arm. The previous positioning of the hand was too contrived. Instead, I opted for something much more natural (in that, it’s literally what I see in the mirror). Because this is a posture I’ve done before, my initial inclination was to avoid it, but after wrestling with a few ideas I decided it’s the best fit for the picture.

Better painters would tell you these are the kinds of problems that need to be worked out on paper before starting the painting, and I’m inclined to agree with them. Unfortunately, it just doesn’t always work out that way. Plus, I feel like too much pre-painting planning takes some of the romance out of it. Frustrating as it may be, moving the composition around feels sort of like a dance; clumsily stepping on my own feet until I find the right rhythm. Then again… I’m not much of a dancer.

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