The image that you see here is also my handsome new profile picture. It's a self-portrait I painted in a class last fall. I actually don't have time to tell the whole "strange case of the mouth in the painting" right now, but I promise I will. The short version has to do with the fact that I took a portrait painting class even though I don't really have a strong interest in painting portraits (in retrospect, a bad idea). I thought I'd see if I could paint someone's head with the same kind of freedom and joy and energy that I often find in painting landscapes. More often than not I found myself feeling bound up, wishing I were outside, tangling with the teacher's suggestions, and probably fighting with myself.
The self-portrait was done one week when the regular teacher was away (tra la!), and I told myself just to have fun while painting my portrait. The other members of the class had already spent one week on their self-portraits, but I had intentionally missed a week and so got to do mine all in one fell swoop. And I did have fun.
The mouth part of the story will have to wait for another day!