I traveled to India some years ago. I have vivid images from my experience there. India is a beautiful place, full of colorful people and big smiles.
It has been tough listening and watching all the news about what’s happening there now. There were more than 414K+ Covid-19 cases within 24 hours…
I have been looking back to my photo archives from my trip. To my surprise, there are lots of pictures of people that I met there, because people were so kind and inviting to take photos of them. I wonder how all of them are doing at this moment. My heart goes out to everyone there.
So I have been painting these little portraits between working on my commission works. This one was painted via Zoom, last night with Henry, who I have painted and spoken with in the past.
During this pandemic, I have been using various way of preparing painting surfaces on paper, and it’s working out pretty well. I typically have used double primed linen, and I have found hard to use any other surface for oil painting, but I think I found a reliable way to paint as I do on linen on paper.
If you want to see painting process of this painting, check out my Instagram Reel on this painting. Enjoy!
Eco-Friendly Oil Painting Series
PART 1 – Know the dangers of using solvents and chemicals
PART II – Recommended Colors for Portraits Painting
Oil on Paper, 12″ x 9″ — As of today, according to CDC’s data tracker, about 25% of Americans (~82,471,151 people) are now fully vaccinated against Covid-19. I am optimistic that things will be much better in the coming weeks. To celebrate my optimism, I began painting oil portraits for my 100 Human Project–I had produced the first 50 using mostly pencil and pen.
2020 has been unpredictable. The first half of the year was especially strange. Experiencing the complete lock down of New York City, and all the uncertainty of the near future made everything so strange.
Escaping from all that uncertainty–to my surprise–created unexpected opportunities, connecting me with artists from New York City and beyond.
The selected images on this post showcases some of the works that I created from January to June. The following are the excerpts from my Instagram posts:
January 3, 2020: This is the final product that transitioned me from 2019 to 2020. I finished it around 11:30 AM today.
January 26, 2020: Oil on Canvas – 30” x 24” – Daedalus & His Wings — This is the final view of my latest project. Sending huge thanks to Donato for the inspiring pose!
February 17, 2020: Oil on Canvas—27” x 48” inches: This is the final product. This project—which was executed from Jan 27 through Feb 14—brought lots of good personal memories. Besides my own stories, here are 5 stories that caught my attention in the course of 3 weeks: (1) Kobe Bryant and daughter Gianna died in helicopter crash, (2) The Coronavirus scare accelerated as new cases of the virus found in U.S. patients–noticeable number of people in New York City has been wearing face masks, (3) On 5 Feb 2020, Trump was acquitted on 2 Articles of Impeachment, (4) Pentagon diverted $3.8 Billion to pay for a wall along the U.S. border with Mexico, (5) Bumble Bees are disappearing due to climate change.
February 28, 2020: I am about to check out “Countryside, The Future” exhibition at #Guggenheim. Oh. In case you are wondering, I safeguarded my latest portrait—still work in progress—from coronavirus. Swipe to see how the painting developed today: I worked on the face and the hands, btw. PS: Seriously speaking, stay safe out there and remember to wash your hands often!
March 10, 2020: Painting slow and painting fast—After spending 2 weeks on my last painting—I need another day or so to finish that painting—I returned to paint an #allaprima to loosen things up a bit. I find it helpful to paint a long and short paintings concurrently and also drawing constantly—See my post yesterday for samples: As some of you might know from looking at my drawings, I am a big fan of quick drawings, especially line drawings.
April 11, 2020: Oil on Linen – This is my first finished portrait of my wife, one of the dedicated New York City Teachers, who has been teaching our New York City students during the COVID-19 pandemic.
As some of you know, the NYC department of education unleashed distance learning to 1.1 Million Students, while continuing to provide FREE ‘Grab and Go Meals’ to all those in need. My hat goes off to teachers, the department of education, and supporting organizations.
This portrait was executed in 3 phases on the following days: April 5th, 6th, and 8th.
May 13, 2020: Oil on Linen, 10” x 8”, title: Raising Covid-19 — Here are the latest stats on Covid-19 (World) 4.3 Million+ confirmed Covid-19 cases, 292K deaths. (United States) 83K deaths—28% of the confirmed deaths in the world thus far come from the United States. I suspect comparing these stats among countries don’t mean much since the majority of the countries are not counting—or testing for that matter—the same way we are counting here in the U.S. No worries, though—We are still # 1.
May 28, 2020: As we welcome the return of traders to the floor of the NYSE this week, here is a painting to remember this epic week—a life portrait of my friend @dougholtstudios, a fellow artist here in New York City.
June 12, 2020: We have welcomed the reopening of New York City after so many weeks of being quarantined. Some states that had opened up first have been reporting increased Covid-19 cases, but that is no surprise. One thing is for sure: reopening of our economy will require relentless forward movement.
Here are the latest stats on Covid-19 (World) 7.27Million+ confirmed Covid-19 cases, 413K deaths. (United States) 116Kdeaths—28% of the confirmed deaths in the world thus far come from the United States.
The Portrait Society of America‘s International Self Portrait Project is an online-only contest during the current COVID-19 health crisis, challenging artists around the world to paint, draw or sculpt their quarantine self-portrait.
Click here to view my work and many other self-portraits from so many talented artists.
Why 4 Million+?
On 24 July 2020, the number of COVID-19 cases surpassed 4 Million+ in the U.S. Hearing the news initiated this self portrait, eventually leading me to paint my left hand to symbolize 4 Million, and to name the painting 4 Million+.
In case you are wondering, the figurative painting painted next to my self portrait is from a life portrait class at the Art Students League of New York. This project was interrupted due to COVID-19 back in March 6th. On March 21st, when there were only 8,403 confirmed cases in New York City, I hung this painting near a window where I paint. I spent whole lot of my time painting and producing during this pandemic with the painting near me, so I was compelled to include it in my self-portrait.
I invite you to view my submission from the competition website below: