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  • Writer's pictureSemesta Cruinne

Self Portrait - Introduction and January 2021

Hi! It is the first month of 2021 and the 10th month of this series of portraits I have been working on. I want to start this post by explaining what this series really is. :)

Looking back!

“Change is the only constant” – is the known saying that comes to my mind now that I look back at this project that I started in April 2020. At that time, the lack of outside guidance on making art through the pandemic, intense reflections that occurred in an abundance of time, and an overwhelming chain of events - gave birth to the series. Till now, I have made nine artworks/series of artworks through 9 months for this project, and it is still going on.

What's the process?

Towards the 20th of every month, I would start thinking about how my month was, everything that had happened, how I felt about all of it or how I felt about myself – I tried to summarize ‘Who I was’ for the month and draw a portrait of myself. Unlike Frida, they were not all faces, but more of what was mostly on my mind about me for the month. By the end of the month, I finished the artwork and posted it on my blog online, here under the tag "Self portrait of the month".

Why though?

Art, to me, is more about the process and the experience than the product, and this project believed in that stream of thought. The project is made at a self-defined pace and allows me to take my time to think and reflect. Last month (December 2020), when I finished my portrait, I couldn’t help but notice the difference between that and the one I made in April 2020. My friend actually made me notice it. It wasn’t for good or bad. I know why I drew both and what I was thinking, but that’s precisely the point; there was a change in how I was thinking and feeling about myself, and documenting it meant a lot to me.

Elab please...?

I have been taking therapies and medication regularly for a while now. So, as I put effort into my wellbeing and since I know my selfworth issues, seeing how I see myself change, as I change deliberately – is like a milestone I want to mark every month. There is a story to each portrait; there is the use of self-made motifs, there exists a process that I feel proud to be able to go through consistently, there is a feeling of achievement in carrying a project for nine months (till now). It is not just about the portraits but also about the whole idea and system of this project that I genuinely cherish as an experience.

2021 January self portrait

Medium: Watercolor and ink

This month's portrait is an imperfect, beautiful, powerful, self-directed tool (sword) that scratches freedom on the ground that her blade touches.

To find all the works that are a part of this on-going series click on the tag "Self portrait of the month" below.

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Jan 28, 2021

More power to you. 💪

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