P. P. and Me

Researching a short profile of the Mr. Picassohead Web site, I test drove the ingenious software, building my self-portrait from selections of facial and abstract clip art.

The first thing I noticed was none of my actual body parts match the heralded artist's concepts of the human anatomy. Well, that's not completely true. There are sideburn trims on my sink which could have been inspired by Picasso's bag of lips. And, if a "Star Wars" princess is accepted coifed in sugarless swirled bear claws, why not ears by Jelly Roll Pablo?

Mike at PlayAlthough my final canvas strikes as simplistic, it evolved through two extended sessions wherein I mixed and orchestrated squigglies, wigglies, and proboscises to sculpt my puss. The hair, interestingly, is a four-times repeated snippet of Picasso lines, rotated, flipped, or resized to approximate my solemn Curse of the Perpetually Windblown.

Prompted for a title, I named the painting "Mike at Play," because it catches me not in my Sunday-go-to-meeting professional exterior, but at my everyday comfort, quipping asides beneath a forest of boyish, snowcapped bangs.

No one would ever connect this Mr. Picassohead caricature to me if we were to pose side-by-side, but having toiled to create it from strange crumbs of the master, I am struck by how much of my essence has been captured.

There's my lazy eyelid.

There's the eternal slouch.

There's the attire, often teed, incorporating, as revealed in the companion article, "my ever-present unsightly shirt stain."

There's my left eyebrow, a manipulative marvel, if I may boast. I can raise and finesse the lad into a repertoire of contortions, while its mate to the side is untalented, forever a straight line.

On the whole, this doodle is me. It feels me -- the best testament, I suspect, to a good self-portrait.

Plus, it doesn't hurt I come off resembling teen throb Peter Noone of the Beatles' era Herman's Hermits band. Ha! That makes me smile, ludicrous as it certainly is. I remember those days and how I wished I could look like the guy.

It only took 40 years. I tell ya. Customer Service just sucks.

I've been fortunate to view Picassos in museum collections, yet I've come away from this experience with a new appreciation for his art and minimalist ways. Being able to recreate myself through his eyes was enlightening and I see we have more in common than our Blue Periods.

No comments:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...