Self portraits

When I first started drawing self-portraits, at 16 maybe, in art high school, I had this feeling of inadequacy that is so ubiquitous for girls and women, this feeling that my features are not quite right, that I am not pretty enough, etc. Something so general to feel not right in your own female body, no matter how close or far you are from the beauty standards. But drawing my own face, hands, my own body also had a potential of power and acceptance, of getting to really see, to really know the body I inhabit, the body I am.

I don’t really draw anymore, but I do take lots of photos of myself. Acknowledging that feeling of inadequacy embedded in my social formation as a woman, but also challenging it. Of course that most of these photos taken on film are somehow idealized and timeless, the softness of the film blurring the features and rendering the image to something very close to the mental image of myself. Still, the sinking feeling when I see a photo of myself from 10 years ago or from 5 years ago and I realize I have changed, I have grown older. But also, feeling glad I have outgrown some of the fears and insecurities from the self pictured in that photos.

I can imagine my face when I will be in my seventies. And I like this image and hope to live to see it. dec 2011_0026

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