Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Portrait of Paloma

Drawing children takes a different kind of skill. There  is always a chance that they might end up looking too mature for their age and be a parody of themselves! Only a very few artists, in my opinion has been able to capture that essence of childhood. Mary Cassat is one of the painters, I feel who was able to do it with aplomb! Even though Sargent is one of my most favorite painters , I always feel his portraits of children lack the innocence I would love to see in them . The portraits of the daughters of Edward Boit,  specially has a sense of mystery and secretiveness  that makes for a great work of art but it does lacks the sense of innocence and vulnerability! Of course I have to add here, that romanticizing children and sugar coating their portraits is not something I am advocating! What I want from a child's portrait is to glimpse his character but at the same time have that sense of  sweetness! But it is always easy to critique someone else work than to do one's own!
Portrait of a Child, Marry Cassat

Daughters of Edward Boit, Sargent Boston MFA
Paloma, Ishita Bandyo
The case in point is my rendering of Paloma, my two year old (going on three) ! She looks way older than her true age. I think the harsh lighting has something to with that. I feel proportionally it is not too bad but somehow, there is something missing ...... Something that makes it Paloma. She looks not only older but sort of wiser! Maybe that is who she  is, but  being her mom I still see her as the  little infant I brought home?


  1. Mary Cassatt and JS Sargent are two of my very favorite artists. Great drawing, they say drawing someone you know well (like your child) is very hard because you have a hard time getting past your preconceptions.

  2. That is very true, Mirabelle! What I saw as an artist was not what I saw as a mom! I love the comment that Sargent made that every time he painted a portrait he lost a friend! Maybe my daughter won't be too happy with him when she is old enough to understand! lol