How do you know that a mouth doesn’t just disappear and you cannot see it now?
I’ve always drawn lips to be open and that it is all there when you draw. If you know how to close them, to create a look, as if the lips were on the edge of that part of the face where it had never been closed. You don’t know the shape, so you don’t know what its like until you see to pull, when your brain tells you that is that part of the mouth. It’s like a small part of that shape is in your hands.
I know how to draw faces, how to know that I am looking at the back of a man’s head. I know that he has a smile, a smile that isn’t just a smile. I know that he is smiling because he’s happy. He is smiling to hide how he’s feeling. And I know because I can see the smile in the mouth. I know that the lips are being pulled, that that is what you are to the face.
Because these people have all the characteristics I want to see and this is the way to get them, the way to go against the conventions, into the world that we are so afraid of with these faces. To let them be seen so they are there when I am looking, and when I am not. I think people are being drawn into the world of makeup through fear, but I know how to see through it with the same tools I use to see through shadows.
How am I supposed to use the brushes when the face is just sitting there waiting in my mouth? These things are only designed for use in the studio.
I know how to draw faces. They are not only my tools, my subjects, they are more important than anything else I know: the brush, the pencil, the palette. It’s my subject because it’s me. I draw them for me and I keep it real and alive. I keep it in balance with how they move when I look at it. I keep it clean and ready to go. I draw them so they will keep on drawing their lives. I don’t mind that they don’t see.
How do I know that they are the way they do? The only thing I can look at is them, because a whole other person is in front of me. That’s all I can see. This is my tool, this is how I know they are looking at me.