I went to Barnes and Noble and flipped through dozens of fashion (and trashy!) magazines looking for unobstructed model faces. I bought the two magazines that had the best and the most options. Before completely committing to the idea, I made two sketches in my sketchbook, fell in love with the idea and got to work.
I very carefully cut out the best photos of close ups of the models, but when I did so, I cut off all of their hair. I glued the cut outs on to high quality, cold press water color paper, and then I got to work drawing out the biggest sections of hair with pencil. Once I was satisfied with the general shape and idea, I used Micron pens to make the lines.
The first lady I finished was LYDIA. Lydia's hair came out really unnatural and even though I recognized that, I really liked the other-worldly quality to it. Lydia was an experiment in that I painted a 3/4 black border around her. I like it, but not enough to do that to any of the others, so she is the only one who has it.
Then I worked on CHARLOTTE. Her hair came out very organically for me and I really didn't put that much thought into it. It just flowed one evening and when I went to bed, I wondered if I really liked it. When I woke up the next morning and looked at her again, I loved her. Out of the ten pieces for this collection, CHARLOTTE is the one I chose to keep.
Next, I'd like to introduce you to RISA. Like Lydia, Risa has a flash of gold. I love the element that the metallic gold adds, but the tiny lines that make up her hair are really what makes this piece for me. Scroll up for a detailed photo of those delicate little lines!
TONI was a simple girl to begin with and so she needed simple hair to compliment her. Inside her afro, gold and black lines crisscross. The gold really lights up in the sun!
ESMERELDA is another one of my favorite pieces. Her hair also came about very organically and I loved the process of creating it, layer upon layer. The gold is just around the hair, so as to not disturb the beautiful little lines that make up each layer of her hair. Be sure to look at the detailed photo below!
Next up is JASMINE. Jasmine is a sweet girl, so she deserved some long locks. She also told me she was into pink highlights and I couldn't deny her.
Then we have OPHELIA. I love Ophelia because her hair turned out just as flowery as her clothes. Ophelia reminded me that I wasn't aiming for realistic hair for these ladies. I was working with pen and could make their hair into whatever I would like. I love the juxtaposition of Ophelia's face and body being real, but her hair is so obviously not.
PRESLEY was a punk from the beginning and I struggled to get her hair just right! That perfect curl was drawn over and over before I really liked it. Then I drew out the stripes in her hair. I meditated on what to do next, but I settled on those little triangles that I have been loving so much lately!
Like Presley, EASTON is also a rocker and she loved what I did with Presley's hair, so she asked for something similar, but with her own twist. Done up in purple, I love the the over all shape of Easton's hair and those little triangles were just so much fun!
I saved ATHENA for very last because I wanted the experience of the other nine to prepare me to give her something gorgeous. Her cut out is so unique that I wanted her hair to be just as amazing. I spent the most time thinking about Athena, drawing out her hair, erasing it, drawing it out again... When I finally settled on all of the main shapes, I drew them in in black and then kept thinking on what lines I was going to add into them. I consulted a fellow artist and friend, I drew out some tests on scrap paper and I settled on these beautiful purple lines. I love the way Athena turned out. She's gorgeous and definitely one of my favorites!
So, there they are! This is one of my most favorite collections ever and I would not be surprised if I decided on another collection of them in the future. I hope you enjoyed them and a peek into the process of their creation!