The 200 Faces Project
How it all began...
In 2009, I was feeling the pressure of being a recent college graduate in an economic crisis. I was finding it challenging to remain creative and still pay my bills, and for a time found myself simultaneously working 4 part time jobs, because of the student loans I was carrying. It was a crash landing into the real world, after the structure and safety of the academic setting, where projects were defined and I had felt productive.
After experimenting with a self-portrait, I painted a few friends and family members. When I had 10 portraits finished, I displayed them at an exhibit in Lewiston, Maine, and decided to publicize a goal: I would set out to paint and sell 200 portraits to pay off my student loans. By doing so, I hoped to accomplish several things: become debt-free, build my portfolio, hone my skills, establish an artistic reputation, and stay inspired to regularly produce art.
By making 200 Faces public, I was held accountable, and I soon found that it grew beyond my expectations. It became a widespread community art project, and I received orders from other states and countries.
I loved having a goal to work toward, and appreciated every new challenge that each painting provided. I painted adults, children, couples, families, dogs, and cats. Some serious, some joyful, some with a hint of humor or strong personality. Some were memorial paintings to honor those who had passed on. I truly enjoyed making connections and learning the stories of the people and animals that I was painting.
This body of work represents the beginning of an ongoing journey to explore humans and animals on canvas for a glimpse into who they are, and the relationships that connect them. I look forward to the future and the faces it will bring!