Monday, July 19, 2010

Self portrait, even more exposed

Today was my first real day with studio time since Dylan's operation July 9th.  I felt raw coming in here, so full of emotions about his surgery, his recovery, and the rest of life.  I wish life were simple and kind.  It isn't always.

I wasted a lot of time until I calmed down enough to draw, then I approached my self-portrait again because it's what's been on my mind this week if art has knocked gently on my door at all.  I think about this piece a lot because it makes me uncomfortable to be drawing it.  And also because I realize I really like it.  The more I work on it, the more beautiful I find it.  As I draw my face, I realize I like the contours of it.  I trust my eyes.  I understand my smile.  The fall of my breasts is comfortable and, oh, so familiar.  Even the crease in my belly has become more benign. At the museum the other day, Chris pointed out a lovely statue of a female nude and showed me that she had the same crease I do.  I could see how slender and beautiful she was, so I began to allow for the possibility that I, too, am beautiful.  My body, too.  I like the openness of my posture.  The vulnerability.  Yes.  This is me.

That's the title:  Yes, this is me.

No more upside down coyness.  No apologies.  No shame.  No embarrassment.  This is part of who I am.  My body.  My flesh.  My sacred flesh.


  1. Congratulations, Susan, on this next step . . . I want to insert 'logical' before step but it feels more like 'emotional' or perhaps 'intuitive'. . . whatever, your art and your beauty captures my heart here. Thanks.

  2. Reading your post combined with seeing your self-portrait evoked quite an emotional response in me. surprise! I think because I so admire your bravery and willingness to share your vulnerability. It is a natural next step in your evolution as an artist, but taken with such care and thought. Brava, Susan.

  3. Mary Virginia CurrieAugust 6, 2010 at 2:03 PM

    I am awestruck at your courage to share your beautiful body with the world. Looking at your
    portrait makes me feel like I have walked into a sanctuary, a place of holiness, and I feel a little teary-eyed. I see some of your new techniques that you actually played with later in the summer in New York, I assume. Weren't you already headed in the direction you reached with your teacher? I am so excited for you whether you continue that way or not. I like your new beginnings. Happy rest of summer, Mary Va.