This portrait of my daughter, Melanie, was drawn 2 or 3 years ago, many years after my first self-portrait had ignited my passion for portraiture. I do not usually like self-portraits - my interest is in depicting the beauty I see around me, rather than some sort of introspective exercise in self-analysis. However, I did keep that first portrait and I'm glad that I did. Not only does it show me how I've grown as an artist, it is also a treasured keepsake and triggers an abundance of deeply-hidden memories.
Here is that first portrait - I hope it will inspire other developing young artists who feel that they are lacking in talent. Who knows where those first tentative attempts at creativity will lead to?
Incidentally, though I dislike self-portraits, they can be extremely useful when there is a distinct lack of interest among your personal modelling agency. As a girl, I found that family members quickly became tired of posing for my life drawings - especially, when my skill levels were insufficiently developed to produce a flattering image of my subjects. The following picture is typical of the response I received when I scoured the house, searching for likely victims!
Not so much a portrait as a study of hair!