Today, I’m embarking on a year long project to make portraits of all 250 of my Facebook friends.
Here’s how it will work; About once a week for the next year I will randomly choose 5 friends to portray and find a photo or two of them from their photo pages to use as a reference. I may use paint or pencil or ink or I may do it using digital tools - a stylus and computer tablet. It will depend on what is available to me as well as what I feel would be the best way to portray you. Now, ideally I would like to do this in person but it isn’t very practical with friends all over the world. If you are a local friend and would be willing to hang out and let me draw or photograph you for your portrait, let me know. I would love to do that.
I set up a page called “The Portrait Project” on Facebook and I plan to post the portraits there. If you like this idea and want to follow along, then just “like” the page and the portraits will begin to appear on your wall. I will post the portrait using only your first name to identify you. I won’t “tag” it but if you like it and want your friends to see it then I would encourage you to tag it yourself. You have my permission to use the digital version of my portrait of you in any way you would like. Also, if you don’t want me to post your portrait, just message me and let me know.
So, why am I doing this? Well, setting up a project like this provides a structure and focus for me to sharpen my skills and experiment with different approaches to painted portraits. Choosing to do this with my facebook friends makes it interesting for me - and hopefully for you too! It’s more fun drawing people I know. I have found that when I draw someone - especially someone I know - I gain a greater depth of understanding and connection to that person. I can’t think of any better group of people to do that with than my friends and family on Facebook.