This self portrait is intended to give an uncomfortable feeling. It was when the sun was shining in my eyes and I had forgotten my Irlen Syndrome glasses. Irlen Syndrome (also referred to at times as Meares-Irlen Syndrome, Scotopic Sensitivity Syndrome, and Visual Stress) is a perceptual processing disorder. It is not an optical problem. It is a problem with the brain’s ability to process visual information. Basically I put on my blue tinted glasses and my eyes and brain chill out. I painted the complementary colours of blue and yellow near the eyes to make the squinting expression stand out.
I Had my email to say I was an unsuccessful applicant for Sky Arts Portrait Artist Of The Year television program for 2020. This self portrait was the submission entry for the TV show. I’m not surprised because this submission portrait looks more like an application for the living dead. This has not stopped my love of portraiture but it has knocked my self worth as an artist. I guess we are a self doubting breed as it is without confirmation that we are not good enough. I do prefer to hide away in my art studio working from a photograph but it would have been lovely to have had the opportunity to meet and paint real celebrities as I usually have my nose stuck in someones autobiography.