It’s where my art began, just painting the people around me. And that continues, since the people pictured here are some family members, close friends and neighbors. You can be more honest with portraits you chose to make of people, whereas commissioned portraits can require a good dose of “improvement” and flattery, especially if they are of adults.

On Halloween I used to take photos of the kids that showed up in full regalia at my door, and went to the elementary schools as well to take pictures, which I then used to paint from. Children have wonderfully unvarnished expressions, and will put on some drama if asked. Everyone is either in character, or making a social debut with a lot of vulnerable shyness. I love the contrast between faces and out of this world costumes.

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