Artwork of Hayden McGovern
I draw portraits using hard pastels, conte, or charcoal on various colors and tones of textured paper. I start out each face with soft construction lines, and once the structure is established, work circularly around the piece adding both extremes of dark and light with swaths of value. I then use this chiaroscuro base, with the color of the paper as a middle-tone, to find the gradients between and reveal form. It feels almost like sculpting, carefully adding and blending values to “chisel out” the subject from the paper. I use a mix of realism and impressionism to capture emotion and powerful expression in people, and at the same time, let out or work through my own difficult emotions in the process. I like to draw self-portraits as a way of self-expression; exploring, accepting and showcasing personal sides of myself that may otherwise stay hidden. Each piece is a personal, vulnerable reflection of what makes us human. I hope that one day my collection of work will allow me to be seen and understood. Thank you.