SJJ – Self Portrait

This is the last spread of this project – mind I still have to go back and work the taped pages.  The background was prepared with torn pieces of papers, receipts etc in this case – an alternative to shredding – then gessoed. Over this we were instructed to write “Today I feel…..” for at least five minutes.  Then to the self-portrait. This was to be done with our hands – good ol’ finger-painting.  I have resisted doing this for about a week, no idea why but determined to get it done today.  Of course, once I started I really enjoyed it.   I have taken artistic license with the colour – I am not orange – more a pasty shade of pale, plus my fingers were too wide to put in all the wrinkles,  but the hair is almost right, I have had white hair since my early thirties.   This was great fun to do returning me, as it did, to childhood playfulness.  I will be using this ‘technique’ again – I would encourage all to try painting with your fingers.

Opposite the portrait the background is made up of my finger and hand prints, over which I stamped a few lizards and printed from a lino-cut a fabulous raven/crow.  These two creatures have meaning for me. Oh and at the top-centre two runes which I pulled before starting.

It is a shame this particular project is over but I am going to continue in this journal to play and try out techniques old and new.


About Jill An artist inspired by nature in all her glorious guises and the ‘inner’ worlds I have inhabited in the past, present and future; also those of other wanderers I meet along the way.
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16 Responses to SJJ – Self Portrait

  1. Lori says:

    I like your face looking from beneath the veil of your words. Great project.

  2. grrl+dog says:

    Hey! Thanks for finding me and taking the time to comment, fellow Soul Journaller.

    I have yet to do my portrait, but I like the shading of your face…you sure your aren’t really orange? Nice runes pulled.. Perth always meant ot me an open gateway, and combined with laguz, my first impression is that your open for some interesting intuitive messages coming your way…. Just a thought. Now on to tackling the mess that is my art table.

  3. Such peaceful work Jill and the text by Rumi is of particular meaning to me..Many many years ago I did a class on Rumi at the local convent facing the beach where the nuns now live and run as a retreat for the Kilbride Sisters …very open minded women and the man who did the course on Rumi was a priest …We sat on a winters night around a wood fire in a small room at the old convent only 4 of us (which was built well before the turn of the century) it formerly being a home for wayward girls then an orphanage…my Mum told me that her Mother worked in the kitchen which was below floor level and very dark so that would have been 1860-1870’s or there abouts…
    I had never heard of Rumi before and as the course only ran for 4 weeks it was all too brief …..
    Lois (Muse of the Sea) 25.8.08

  4. Beth W. says:

    I am brand new here — too new to say much, yet — only that your art is stunning to me and inspiring as I sit in the early morning rainy darkness in a pool of light at my laptop in the middle of a longleaf pine forest near Pensacola, Florida. Thank you.

  5. woodnymph says:

    Good work! I especially like the eagle.


  6. shewolfy728 says:

    These are really neat, and I especially like the face with the words on it.

  7. manonf says:

    You succeeded in adding shades so your face looks alive and expressive! Both works are pleasant to my eye. 🙂

  8. Claire says:


    Jill, this is gorgeous… in part its so like what we were doing as part of our identity project! In part its so you. I understand teh crow/ raven, but I’d love to know more about the lizard symbolism
    I’m still way behind on this project. I’m sure I’ll get there, I’m not so sure I’ll do it with such style

    Claire XX

  9. Kerry says:

    I’ve never wanted to do a self-portrait graphically – afraid it would be dull – but yours is stunning!

  10. Karla says:

    I am amazed really, at the amount of detail achieved with your fingers. I think it’s great!

  11. paintinglady says:

    I love the self portrait – ahhh fingers too big to do the wrinkles eh? I knew there was a reason finger painting was so good!

    Fabulous work – hope you do some more of these pages.


  12. pearlz says:

    (: this is brilliant, i really love seeing your work!

  13. kate says:

    hi – sorry i thought i’d already commented here and just realised i haven’t! forgetful or what?! Anyway well done for completing more of the soul journal challenge than me (although i only did a few days so i suppose that’s not hard!). Love the way you’ve done these :o)

  14. pearlz says:

    I enjoy the way you describe your work as well (: and thought I’d just leave a comment to say that.

  15. Alis says:

    This is great! Not easy to do a self portrait but you have done a great job, and with just fingers too!

  16. Lubna says:

    Oh wow! Love the self porttrait and the flowing script – it all works so well:-)

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