I love how portraits go through an ugly phase before resolving themselves. There’s always a point when I’m drawing when I wonder if the portrait is going to be a complete disaster or if it is going to work out OK and I have no idea what the answer will be. All I can do is keep working and hope that I will find a way to make it work. Ninety per cent of the time I do, but to be honest it doesn’t really matter. Obviously it’s great to have a portrait I like at the end of the process, but it’s the process that matters, working on my drawing to try to get past the ugly stage to make it less ugly, to resolve it and make something that feels at least partly complete.
This portrait of Fary was especially difficult and was very ugly about half way through. I left it and came back to it a couple of days later, worked on it for another hour and resolved it. It doesn’t have much of a likeness but it’s not ugly any more and I’m very happy with it.