Drawing 50

I woke up, thinking - what to do today? What does one do when one turns 50? My paints were in my studio, but the only thing that made any sense was to sit myself down right away, and take a good honest look at myself before I had any time to think. I found a watercolor block, and my drawing box and thus began a project of drawing myself every day for my 50th year. To live 50 as a painter, taking a good look each day, whether I have 2 minutes or an hour, and whether I want to or not. And in the way that iterations are not just repetitions but change due to the very fact of being repeated, I will live the year of 50.

Karen Kaapcke, September 2012

The Continuation: I have noticed in this, my 51st year, that I am more my body than ever. Yet I was suddenly barely recognizing it. The need to look at it and 'lean in' with it, to work with it, has become central. As a result, my body is becoming more my own. And more universally representative of the need to be present physically in a way that most women find only happens in the younger, sexy years. 51 = drawing the body.

Karen Kaapcke 3.30.13

A few years later, and I looked into the mirror - and was struck by how foreign my belly was to me. I still don't recognize myself.

Karen Kaapcke 9.20.16
I thought I was done with this drawing.  Then a friend told me something, that got me back to work - but at first, it was hard.  Hard to listen, admittedly, and I had to to look at this in myself.  But, I didn't hesitate - and got to scraping down, drawing more.   When I pulled the ear out in a kind of pink, it was close.  That pink ear, open and listening and pink - it resonated.  But hours later, more scraping down and it not being quite right - and I found my way to pushing what needed to be pushed, and taking down what needed to be taken down. 

4.11.13, self portrait with pink open ear, graphite and craypas on vellum, 14x17",
©Karen Kaapcke 2013

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