050 – Thora Birch

Thora Birch

Thora Birch, born 11 March 1982. Pencil, recoloured on computer. I did this without plotting any points – just sketched straight from the reference. I was pretty pleased with it when I’d finished and thought my abilities must be improving. But then, after scanning it, I placed it over the photo to check its accuracy and it was a mile off. Everything is in the wrong place. And yet, it still looks like her – at least it does to me. So it seems as though there is a greater margin of error, in some faces, for capturing a likeness. My Laura Robson portrait didn’t look like her even though it was technically accurate, perhaps because she has a more generic face and the things that make her recognisable are more subtle. I suppose that’s pretty obvious – some people are more recognisable than others – but it appears that I’m only just grasping this.

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