When I knew my exhibition in the Rutledge Gallery would last from December through March I thought: that's a really long time; what can I do to make it more of a living place that would hold changes for my students, be good for me, and engage the community? Portraits. I return again and again to this practice, when I need to begin working without too much thinking. I've also found it to be a beautiful way to connect with people I would not otherwise meet, through an open call.
Each person who signed up has the option to keep her/his piece but allows me to publish it, along with the thoughts s/he thought while sitting. Below are the results so far in the order they were done - thoughts under each portrait.
January 23, Nicholas Stover:
concentration is it only
found in orange juice
January 23, Rosie Hopkins-Campbell
January 23, Casey Shelton
I'm uninterested in entertaining thoughts. I'm the subject of an artist's gaze and appreciating that is enough to place me into a tranquil, bare state of mind.
January 24, Mikayla and Meredith Dallas
- your posture
- my posture
- why some of the boards are messed up
- is it gonna get warm?
- how am I gonna draw a tree?
- watching sun on the floor
- watching you draw
- thinking about your whole body moves when you draw
- watching you examine my shirt
- stacey's glasses
- why did the music stop?
Four things I thought about while being drawn:
1. The trees on campus and the tree struck by lightning that Beth Melton showed me.
2. The smell of the oranges we had for breakfast.
3. The exact blue of Stacey's glasses.
4. My favorite quality of light.
January 24, Shelley Jones
I'm so happy to be sitting still.
I wonder if I'll have "resting bitch face" in the painting. People always seem to think my normal face is mean. I'm not mad. I like people I think. Mostly.
Why don't we go to gallery openings and concerts? Did we do that before we had a child? I hardly remember... I'd like to do that again. Or more.
Busyness is the enemy of creativity. How do I get less busy and find a space to write and think? I miss writing. Less doing.
I'm sleepy. I love sleeping.
I wonder what's written on that sticker I've been staring at for two hours? Frank?
Is my hair color toxic?
Everything is toxic.
I feel so rested. More sitting please still, please.
January 24, Lillian Audra Peel
I am thankful the sink in the corner of the room doesn't drip too loud. There's no ticking clock by the door, and no whistling or humming of any sort to distract me.
I anxiously wait, twiddling my thumbs to see the final result.
Although I am happy to be sitting, happy to be a contribution to the art taking place around me, the sun shines brightly through the tall windows and I can't wait to go play outside.
January 30, Kevin Cook, Winthrop University Women's Basketball Coach
While Stacey was doing my portrait a plethora of things flooded my mind. Would any of my past joys and pains reveal themselves to Stacey in my face. How does our face and spirt connect. You think about many thing as you sit.
(We needed 45 more minutes, so there was a second short session February 6.)
After a tough week I felt comfortable for the final hour...Energy was low but spirit uplifted.
February 7, Will Lattman, Sophomore at Winthrop
Sitting in a chair for 1 1/2 - 2 hours is a little difficult for an ADD person, because if I don't talk, something has to be moving, or if I'm not moving, I have to be talking.
If you are being painting, bring eye drops bacause your eyes will dry out.
Finally, here is man, moving: Art World, Part 1(draft/preview) https://vimeo. com/118447992 Thanks to…