Portrait by Varosha: https://linktr.ee/Varosha
I never expected that I would have a portrait painted of myself. While I have sat as an artist’s model for a life-drawing class in my late twenties, the results were only sketches, and I doubt my face was the object of interest. In any case, I never saw the finished products at the end of the session, and I’m certain they would not have survived the passing of time.
Painted portraits are quite a different proposition. They tend to be the hallmark of people with power or fame. Why would anyone paint me? I don’t hold a position of authority and the only thing I’m famous for is leaving my belongings behind. So, when the callout came from the London Writers’ Salon for subjects willing to be painted during a writing session, I thought to myself, I’m in!
Varosha is a Bristol based writer and artist. She is currently Artist in Residence with the London Writers’ Salon, and her project is called ‘The Daily Faces.’ The concept is quite simple but oh so clever. Over the period of about a month, she will paint 32 portraits of people who join the daily Writers’ Hour. These paintings will then be laid out to look like two Zoom screens. In other words, they will look just like what we see when we log in – random faces all coming together to write in silent companionship for an hour.
I didn’t know when the actual painting would take place. Then, out of the blue, I received an email from Varosha to say that she had painted me during the previous writing session and attached was a photograph of the portrait. I didn’t expect to have such a strong emotional reaction to the painting. I absolutely love it. While I look more serious than I usually am, the likeness is astounding and reflects the way I look during the writing process. I also appreciate that when I study the portrait, I see that she has captured something of the essence of who I am. All this without having met me! I feel deeply honoured to have been chosen as one of her subject.
I am glad I had no idea when Varosha was planning to paint me. I am sure vanity would have kicked in and I would have chosen a brighter lipstick and maybe even tried to strike a pose or two. I certainly would have planted a fake smile on my face to ensure I didn’t look grumpy. As it is, the portrait is an honest portrayal for which I am grateful.
I invite you look at the rest of the portraits Varosha has painted during the Writers’ Hour, at: https://www.instagram.com/explore/tags/thedailyfaces/?hl=en