I am painting the fourth portrait now. I started at 2 in the morning.
I love these hats because I paint them for the creator who lives inside me. Each of these hats is special because they lack design. I haven’t attempted to channel or even hide the chaos. Each of these has evolved organically. Usually I start an artwork with a sketch then paint over it. I do this more out of need, I’d say; when you illustrate for a publication, there’s a review process that entails an approval on the sketch. The hat-paintings are all done without a supporting sketch. I would start painting a face, expressions would emerge; I’d then read those expressions and paint a hat that told the story of the expression on the face.
Artists speak of inspiration, of a portrait that painted itself; illustrators don’t. But within every illustrator lives is an artist. I don’t meet mine very often, but when I do – I paint stuff that’s oddly out-of-place on this blog.
For those who haven’t seen the hats yet.
The hats happened quite suddenly. Then they stopped. For about three months, I didn’t paint any. Now, I’m painting them again.
I can’t explain my behavior. Perhaps you can. I just know when I must paint them – the why of the hats as well as the inspiration, evades me.