Scratched Self Portrait

I have been thinking about applying my scratching process to other watercolor studies. Today, I developed an icon based on my brother Mike*. He used to hit himself and bite his hand.

Pencil Drawing - Mike Icon

Angry Mike Icon
9″x12″ 90# Sketch Paper

Here’s a photograph of Mike in the process of slapping and biting himself:

Autistic Mike hitting himself

I applied a light yellow/red glaze on my paper and, after it dried, etched the above icon into my paper. The scratches were invisible, so  it was easy to a portrait of what I think I look like, without getting confused by the lines of the icon.

I used a dip pen to fill my scratches with ink.

Watercolor: Self Portrait with Icon

Self Portrait with Icon
9″12″ 140# Cold Pressed Watercolor Block

The idea behind my double self portrait is that something of my brother Mike is etched into my own personality.  The ‘angry Mike’ icon was just the one I used today. Other icons could be used interchangeably.  I’m not so sure how legible the above double portrait is. Can the viewer see both at once? Can the viewer even read Mike’s face?

Note: I don’t even know if Mike was angry when he harmed himself. Some doctors suggested that his behavior was Tourettic** in nature, which means he couldn’t help his actions.


* For those just joining me, Mike is my older brother who is autistic, low functioning and nonverbal

** Tourette’s Syndrome is a medical condition where the subject acts on uncontrollable urges.

5 thoughts on “Scratched Self Portrait

  1. Pingback: re-blogged. Sublimating?-Overcoming?-Understanding? Otherness thru Art? | Winning with Lynne, again! :)

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