Esther. Portrait.

by Anna Colombo

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I made this drawing because the image conveyed to me the transparency and serenity of children through their clear eyes.

The portrait is generally the representation of a person according to his real features and appearance; refers to an artistic work created in the fields of painting, sculpture, drawing, photography or even, by extension, the literary description of a person.

In art it represents one of the most relevant subjects, even if portraiture was anciently considered an inferior genre to the historical scene, which had as its subject the actions of important figures of the past.

The portrait is never a true mechanical reproduction of the features, but in order to define itself as such, the artist's sensitivity comes into play who, in the creative process, in the choice of pose and expression of his work, interprets the features of the model according to one's own taste and according to the characteristics of the art and the time in which he operates. Some artists practiced portraiture widely and almost exclusively but it also happened that entire civilizations rejected it.

The Tuscan art historian Filippo Baldinucci defines him as a "figure taken from nature".

I find myself in this definition of him. A portrait will never be truly alive as a real thing in itself, but realistic, capable of reproducing details and capturing expressions and mood.

In my case then the use of photography intervenes.

Taking a portrait without photography requires a very long shutter speed. It happened like this even before photography itself was invented; it is said that Cezanne forced his protagonists to pose up to a hundred times, or that Goya preferred to have a session as long as the whole day; other painters only drew the face live and subsequently completed the body, clothes, background in the studio...

I'm certainly not Cezanne or Goya or a famous artist. All my art is based on careful study of existing photographs. I reproduce them on commission or when they communicate emotions to me. Doing it in a suitable time, without pressure, without expectations on the part of the subject, allows me to work better, respect my privacy and also to draw with serenity, with the hope that the result obtained will also be able to reassure and capture the nature and characteristics of the person who wishes to be portrayed.

It is not essential to use colors to convey emotions or to capture the expressions that make the drawing similar.

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