My on-line diary began in the 1990's from my studio in the North of England. After a lapse of ten years, I resumed posting from my present studio on the Caribbean island of Dominica.

From the far beginning, the intention has been to give an insight into my working methods, and to share the triumphs, trials and tribulations of work-in-progress.

My diary pages are followed by thousands of artists, art students and art lovers in over 50 countries.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

You horrible little man…

The critic Jean Lorrain accused Toulouse-Lautrec of taking the cult of ugliness too far.  Cabaret performer Yvette Guilbert’s response to a drawing he had made of her was, “You horrible little man”.

With portraiture, it is difficult to resist flattering the sitter.  However, when the sitter is in an irritable frame of mind the artist can mischievously use it to his advantage.  

Here’s an unsmiling, uncombed Denise on a morning when everything went wrong.  As she huffed out of the studio, I could swear I heard her say, “You horrible little man”.



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