Love: watercolor, curvy ladies Hate: “pretty” “whimsy” faces

Yesterday was a day of anti-whimsy-faces watercolors. I saw that Traci Bautista was going to teach us how to draw stylized glam-girl faces based on magazine photos next in the Strathmore workshop and I finally had it. I think those anorexic, super skinny, no-nose, lollipop-headed, flower stem-necked images of female ‘beauty’ just perpetuate more self-loathing in the actual girls and women who can never in a trillion years, look “pretty” like that. We even call them “pretty faces”! We fill our journals with these sick images that are nowhere NEAR a reflection of real female beauty. And it is we, the women artists, who are perpetuating this on each other and our daughters! It’s worse than the magazines…which real, beautifully imperfect women and girls also use in their collages to represent their own feelings, etc. How can that be healing??? Anyway, I did several watercolors on that subject, including this one:

I experimented with designing some stylized, whimsical curvy women, and this my favorite of the ones I came up with.  I call her my little piece of magic, and I will probably experiment with Magic in other work:

This is the Slow Journaling (Daisy Yellow) I did in my Canson based on how I was feeling yesterday:

And to end on a positive note, this is the exressive watercolor I did based on the last lesson from the Strathmore workshop:

I had a blast with it.  It really fits with my love of playing with abstract shape, line, and color.

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16 Comments

Filed under Art Journal Pages, Paintings, Watercolor

16 responses to “Love: watercolor, curvy ladies Hate: “pretty” “whimsy” faces

  1. Don’t you dare go draw those cute faces! These 2 ladies you’ve drawn are soooo much more interesting. I don’t mind the “pretty” faces but they do start to all look the same, don’t they? I love what you’ve done here. Ignore that class and do more of this.

    PS: If you want to see a non-pretty face, just wait until you see the self-portrait I did at 11:00pm last night, LOL!

  2. Jo

    I am so happy to hear other women artists question the current trend of “pretty faces”. I worry about how limiting they are in defining beauty as skinny, girl-ish and white. I’ve been sitting with this discomfort for awhile as I scan on-line whimsical portrait classes looking for teachers who have a style that represents a more inclusive vision of female beauty.

    Thanks for speaking out and for sharing your divine curviness!

  3. Satina Scott

    Hey now, Melisa, no hate-talk! I would LOVE to see that portrait. You’d better post it! I guess I should post the one I did, huh? 😉

  4. Satina Scott

    Thank you Jo! It’s wonderful to find other women who are of the same mind on this!

  5. Satina Scott

    Perhaps I will look into putting together a class of my own. I’m working on doing my own youtube videos, but I don’t quite have the setup yet. I could do a free workshop with just text and photos on artjournaling.ning though. I will think about that.

  6. Kel

    wow, what an explosion of colour and individuality
    it is so refreshing to find someone not afraid to do their own creative thing
    so many people’s journal pages look like cookie cutter versions of everybody elses
    boring!!!

    of course, the amount of purchased product many use in their work for embellishment doesn’t help,
    sadly ‘product’ seems to be the hot topic of conversation on most online journal groups as everyone turns their pockets out to buy more stuff so they can make stuff that looks like everyone else’s

    in Australia the cost of that stuff is higher than Nth America
    but i think that’s a good thing as it forces me to be more creative, think laterally and come up with my own alternatives

    pretty is in the eye of the beholder
    me thinx your style is beautiful 🙂

  7. Satina Scott

    Thank you so much, Kel. I agree with all your sentiments. I think you would love Comfortable Shoes, who started artjournaling.ning You can find her videos under comfortableshoesstud on youtube, and she did a whole series of blog posts about this very topic here:
    http://www.comfortableshoesstudio.com/2011/05/cult-of-stuff-part-1.html . She’s my art journaling hero/guru.

  8. Fantastic work Satina. I totally agree with you… I was just telling my friend the other day that I am rebelling against what society wants me to be. I’m tired of always feeling like I’m not good enough just because I’m not a size 0…
    Speak out woman and speak out loud!

  9. Wow, Satina… you spoke right to my heart! I’ve been searching for a tutorial on how to draw/paint elderly faces…. or at least Crone style faces…. with wrinkles, laugh lines, age marks, etc. I saw Betty White’s 90th birthday and thought she’d be a great model… but I cant find one of her not smiling!

    Keep up the great work! I love following your blog.
    xoxo Chris

  10. Satina Scott

    Judi, thank you for telling me that, because I didn’t think about that! Raeven, sweetie, I’m so glad this could empower you. That is my highest intention. And Chris, thank you so much. And you issued me a challenge, telling me you couldn’t find a non-smiling pic of Betty White, although a portrait of her probably should be smiling, since that’s what she does! Here are some though:

    I really like this one, too, esp. for a commemorative portrait:

    Print it out and turn it upside down to get the best likeness. Another thing to do is trace it through non-tracing paper, so that all you can see are the darkest lines. That will tell you what needs to be there to get the image across on paper.

  11. Satina Scott

    Okay, for a fabulous tutorial on the correct proportions for a face, which should give you a great start on drawing them, you have got to see this kid go: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r8Nsj6_Hh7g&feature=related

  12. I love the last picture – it is so full of light, color and brightness. I’m working on pumpkins with wings and high heels. . .

  13. Your little piece of magic is great 🙂

  14. I like these pages. They feel real. I am part of a journal group, and they all seem to be exactly alike. There’s almost some kind of inspiring quote,a and they almost have the same layered technique. It’s rare to see the uniqueness of the artists. Maybe all these people are participating in these classes you referred to.

    I like that you are expressing what’s on your mind and thank you for your thoughts on the magazine women. I must admit I use them in my work often, but I usually don’t want to take the time to be more realistic.I have very little time in my life and need to get pieces finished pretty quickly. Check out my girls here http://takingitpersonally.wordpress.com/tag/girls/

    I look forward to seeing more of your work!

    • Satina Scott ~ The Indigo Mystic

      Thank you so much for your support of my work. Yes, I prefer unique, individualized styles when journaling, although I love to see all types. The book 1000 Artist Journal Pages is a wonderful inspiration, full of really unique takes on personal artistic journaling styles, if you’re looking.

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