LISA CARTER

STUDIO #223

The human form possesses an inherent beauty. However often we witness our own in a mirror or someone else’s, our eyes never tire of studying its curves and sinews. Laid bare, a human body exerts a mysterious magnetism. Looking at an image of another person, either in a painting or photograph, we find ourselves searching for something we recognize in ourselves, something universally human. For more than twenty years, I have worked as a professional artist whose portfolio spans a range of subjects, from landscapes to still lifes, but have returned to the human face and body again and again. The need to translate not only a person’s particular lines and proportions but also his or her essence onto canvas has remained a constant source of inspiration in a career spanning three countries and two continents. I have often spent hundreds of hours working to distill a person’s unique beauty as well as portray someone in whom we can all see something of ourselves. While I still enjoy engaging in this intensive process, I also balance my artistic practice with ink drawings whose immediate precision lies within my decades of artistic study. I normally finish these pieces within the space of a few hours, working from a live model inside my Wicker Park studio. Drawn with ink rather than in a medium I have the option of erasing, these looser portraits reflect the person as well as the mood of the room in the moment. Much like the surge of emotion you feel from first falling in love, these ink drawings capture my freshest impression of the human form standing in front of me. As I often layer one pose upon another to create a collage of bodies, a sense of movement builds that evokes the daily experience we all have of living inside a human form whose beauty too often escapes our notice.

 

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