Stephanie Drake

Portraiture provides an essential way of exploring the world through the presentation of the people within it, it can show something about what it means to be human; about our vulnerability, hopes and ambitions.

The primary objective of the One-Another project is to explore the interesting connection between siblings, namely the parings of fraternal (non-identical) twins.
I looked to present the relationships between the twins through dual portraits using the devices of disguise and reflection. With the intention that identity and the symbolic narrative are closely connected, and can be revealed through the portrait. This relationship has a role as arbiter of character, which I have hoped to capture in each pairing.

There is a unique connection that is held between siblings, and the choice to study fraternal twins was a mindful one, as it tackled the interesting notion of an identity that was both shared and separated in an exclusive way. The siblings share an unrivalled genetic similarity, yet differ greatly in appearance. This complex interconnected ‘self’ provides a fascinating notion that I wished to explore.

The negative space within the portraits is as important as the positive, as such the figures have been painted without interference from background information and the symbolic inferences of clothing have been removed.  The spacing around the heads provides a narrative for the relationship between the twins the viewer is invited to read into this space to explore the connection between the siblings, simultaneously the physiognomy of each character can be sought through the detailed depiction of their face.

Owing to time and practical constraints I could not be afforded the luxury of having each set of twins sit for a portrait, although this would have provided a more fertile ground for the investigation of the portrait it was not a practical solution, therefore the best method for this investigation was initially through photography, as it allowed me to gather a large quantity of information that could later be used for studies.
The drawings displayed were produced in the first instance for mapping the details and aesthetics of the face to become familiar with the forms before transferring them onto board for painting. They were crucial in the process, however I see the four paintings as the final works.

From left to right: Rosie & Zac, Lucy & Eve, Sam & Vikki, Caitlin & Eilidh

Rosie & Zac

 Lucy & Eve

Sam & Vikki

Caitlin & Eilidh

Preparatory study drawings

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