Drawing became stressful to me long ago for a silly reason. I became too hard on myself, and would criticize my work if it did not come out exactly as I intended. As such, I would only show people a drawing that I’d worked long and hard to perfect. (After a time, I slowed down to drawing only a few times a year.) Much of my work went unseen, even, in a way, by myself. That’s one of the reasons I like to go through the plethora of drawings I’ve done after much time has passed; I can distance myself emotionally from the work, and find more satisfaction.
This emotional backdrop also no doubt contributes to my being so moved by the story of Cassandra Bankson, a very pretty nineteen-year-old model from California who reveals her acne-ridden, unmade-up face in a ten-minute youTube tutorial on making up your….you guessed it: acne-ridden face. She achieves a flawless look with make-up, but what’s more amazing is how this young woman steps out of her comfort zone in order to help others. What a mensch!
I read about Cassandra in a magazine, and I found her face so compelling that I had to draw it. I grabbed the nearest writing utensil (a fine black magic marker) and some paper destined for the recycling pile, and just blew out a drawing. This was going (for me) WAY out of my own comfort zone: my preferred drawing media is pencil and eraser. Taking a stab at a facial portrait with a pen is stressful because you know you can’t make corrections. And if you hate getting a picture wrong, this does not bode well. Especially if you plan to show it to people.
I would not say I nailed this pic (if I’d done it with pencil, I’d be able to expand the jawline and improve the facial proportions), but for some reason I was pleased with the result….I somehow captured her essence, and that is what I usually am most going for. So despite its imperfections, I release this pic in the spirit of Cassandra Bankson’s willingness to go out on a limb. My hat is off to her (and my concealer is ON) for her contribution, which I am sure has helped many, many people. You go, girl.