Welcome To My Portrait Gallery
Technically, a portrait is a composition based on how one person views another, and relates it from heart to eye to hand to paper. Place two people in a room and ask them what they see, and no two people will see the same person in the same way.
People are living works of historical art, and should be identified as such. This is the world through my eyes. Below are examples of my art work. It is my desire to share my perspective with hope that my experience will aid fellow artists in training their eyes to see.
The Wizardry Of Mrs. G.
The Power Of Light
While at my nephew's house celebrating the third birthday of his triplets (yes, I'm a great aunt), I noticed his mother-in-law standing by the stove.
Mrs. G. is a lovely lady, and was recovering from a bad fall. As she rubbed her neck with one hand, and dipped her hand in a bowl of potato chips with the other, I took her picture. There was something magic about the whole thing - the lighting, the way she helped her daughter in the kitchen, the way she hugged her grand children - that just seemed like magic to me.
This one photo was my inspiration for a series of what would be a lifelong commitment to promoting the art of the family.
A Portrait For Mother's Day
Mother And Child In Shades Of Amber
The the lady you see in this portrait is the lovely daughter of Mrs. G. This is the proud mother of five, three are triplets. This art was based on a photo taken at the triplet's birthday party. This sepia tinted photo illustration printed on parchment serves as another example of how I see parental prestige.
Portrait Of Becca's Grand Baby - Forty Colored Pencils
Baby In The Car Seat
This is the grand daughter of a very special person. One day she saw me working on some art cards, and asked if I could do portraits of her grandchildren from her photographs. She said her pictures were not that good. I told her to give me what she had, and I would try and do my best with what she had.
When doing an illustration from a photograph, often I see things that aren't there, and eliminate things that are there. I guess that is an artist's 'poetic' license. This drawing was done with forty colored pencils on 8x10, 140 lb. water color paper.
Capturing Warm Smiles
For The Love Of A Mother And Child
More often than not, many unsung heroes are the Mothers and Fathers of handicapped children. This particular mother's first born child was healthy at birth. At six months old, her pediatrician erred. It was proven that her once healthy baby was over vaccinated, which left this mother with a permanently disabled child who would live with seizures the rest of her life.
This mother is special in that she is my sister, and her oldest daughter is my niece. Although her daughter is over 40 years old, my sister has home cared for her since birth. I took a picture of them last year in our Mom's kitchen. When I took the picture, I did not see a disabled child, or an overworked mother - I saw the utmost example of The Greatest Love Ever.
My portrait was drawn on 90 lb. water color paper with colored pencils, and a prismacolor black pen.
Theresa With Her Babies
A Mother Daughter Portrait
This is a portrait of my sister's other daughter. My niece and her husband are foster parents. They adopted one little girl, and hope to adopt this baby, too. This drawing is composed of colored pencil and black PrismaColor pen on 90 lb. watercolor paper.
Note: Since this portrait was drawn, three more have been completed. My dear neice now has three adopted children. Their portraits will be added to this gallery in the near future.
A Living Work Of Art
My friend in Japan is a fine professional model. This is one of several portraits I've done of her. This composition was done with 40 colored pencils and black fine point marker on 140 lb. watercolor paper.
Drawing this portrait was a reminder that not all colored pencils are alike. A Berol Eagle Blue Pencil is not the same as a Prismacolor Blue Pencil. One has a softer lead, one has a more vibrant hue, or different shade of blue. One pencil will layer colors better than another, and others are totally non-erasable.
My odd colored pencil mix is due to my not wanting to waste anything. I use a pencil until I can't hold the stub between my fingers anymore. The colored pencils I use are a remnant mix of odds and ends acquired throughout the course of my lifetime, and range from the old Dixon, SpectraColor Venus, and Berol Eagle pencils, to the more modern Kodak, Crayola, and Prismacolor colored pencils.
Over the years, pencil manufactureres have come and gone. Different types of materials are used to make colored pencils now, and the methods for their manufacture have changed. When I run out of something old, it is sometimes difficult to match a color or product that is not made anymore. This is one reason why most professional artists prefer to use one type of pencil, pen, marker, or paint for their compositions
Mikayla's Mother - Wedding day
All Hands On Desk
Creative Minds Think Alike
This is one of four portraits I've done of Mikayla about six years ago. When I first saw my Aunt's Great Grand Daughter, she instantly became my new muse. As I worked on this drawing until the wee hours of the morning to finish it, I realized just how much we were alike. At that moment while putting on the finishing touches on our hand work, we were both dozing off at our desks.
My Portrait of Robbie
This Mikayla's big brother, Robbie. He was the first of my aunt's great grand children, and this portrait was done three years ago.
Recently, my aunt sent me a photo of Robbie at the golf coarse, and I am currently working on one of his first golf outing.
A Moment In Time Out
My Celebrity Portrait Art
La Bron James - Cleveland Cavelier
While watching a Cavs game a few years ago, an announcer was talking about the opposing team during a time out. All the while the announcer was gabbing, a camera was panning the court, never focusing on any one thing. When the camera began to pan the Cavs, Mr. James caught my eye.
For that brief moment, I saw something the camera did not. While wiping the sweat from his brow, La Bron James reminded me of a child in prayer. The time out ended, the game resumed, and the Cleveland Caveliers walked out of that game as winners. I walked away from the television set with an idea.
My portrait titled "La Bron James: A Moment In Time Out." The mixed media design is comprised of ink and colored pencil on 140 lb. watercolor paper, framed within hand made paper. It was designed to be small, sized to ACEO standards (Art Card Edition Original 2.5" x 3.5").
While drawing the portrait, it bothered me that the fans were no longer allowed to wave the giant hands in the stands in support of their favorite team. My original ACEO La Bron James "Fan Tag" was designed to hang on a shirt button.
The La Bron James Fan Tag is a one of a kind item , and "A Moment In Time Out" currently resides with a private collector.
Hillary Clinton - 2008
Candidate At The Podium
The 2008 Presidential Election had some historic moments. Hillary Clinton's magnificent run for the Democratic nominee for presidential candidate was something to be applauded.
Above is my ACEO portrait of Hillary Clinton at the 2008 Democratic Convention. The art card is a drawing composed of colored pencil and black PrismaColor marker on watercolor paper. This art now resides with a private collector.
The Palin Campaign
2008 Republican Vice Presidential Candidate
Sarah Palin made history in 2008 by being the Vice Presidential candidate of choice by the Honorable John McCain. Ms. Palin was well qualified for the position, she is well spoken and loved by the people she represents.
Above is my ACEO portrait drawing of Sarah Palin. The art card iscomposed of colored pencil and black PrismaColor marker on watercolor paper. This art now resides with a private collector.
Georgie Wears A Hat
My Interactive Children's Portrait Book
The above video is a little interactive child book I produced for my artist friend, Mary Vogel Lozinak. The idea began with my colored pencil drawing of little Georgie. As he was a bald baby, his lead looked cold to me. From that point, I created an activity book that he could learn from. Mary has the original portrait, and she said her Mother keeps the book at her home, and whenever Georgie visits, the book comes out to play with. It is hard to believe he is going on seven years old now. An idea is in the works for Georgie's little brother..
The Art Of Peace
When fellow artist, Mary Vogel Lozinak, became a Grandmother, her new grandson became my Muse of Summer 2010. With permission, I drew the portrait as I saw it. The original portrait is with Mary, and with her blessing, the portrait of "Little Magoo" is the 2010 mascot of Peace Point Stamp Products. Magoo's little brother is destined to be an official member at Peace Point, as well. My original portrait was drawn with 40 colored pencils on 90 lb. water color paper. This portrait currently resides with a private collector
© 2009 Tonie Cook