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The Real Me?

Richard Bell’s Wild West Yorkshire nature diary,  Wednesday,  19th August 2009

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Richard by Dan Weinstein
Richard by John Gardner
Richard by John Gardner

I LIKE drawing gnarled weather-beaten trees but when it comes to drawing my own gnarled weather-beaten face, I’m not so keen. If there’s nothing else available, I’m always more likely to draw my left hand rather than go in search of a mirror to draw a self portrait.


So I like the the cool, clean, graphic look that Dan Weinstein gives me in this portrait which he drew after watching a video of Danny Gregory and I drawing on location in Dewsbury market.


In contrast my friend John Gardner has given me the look of an old sea dog - I wouldn’t look out of place in Victorian Whitby, as photographed by Frank Meadow Sutcliffe.


John took this on the patio the other weekend. His daughter held a large flash unit close to my right ear to get an effect known as feathering.


The striking sepia image would make a good dust-jacket portrait of the author for a book that I’ve been working on for some years, set in the Victorian period but for my home-page I’ve gone for the less gothic-looking full colour version.

John Gardner Photography

The feathering effect is even more striking in the larger original of this portrait.