November 1st was declared the international self portrait day for artists 8 years ago. I believe it began at ConceptArt.org, please correct me in the comments if I am mistaken. This year it’s moved to Facebook. So many quirky, funny, beautiful, odd and interesting self portraits were painted.
Painting self portraits are a great practice and one I highly recommend at that. You always have your model at hand and you can practice working from life. The best way is to use a mirror because you train your observational skills when doing do, far more than you do by painting from a photo.
When you paint from life you are translating 3D into 2D, and to do so you really have to look hard and understand what you are seeing, whereas when you paint from a photograph the choices have already been made for you and you’re instead translating 2D into 2D, it is easier but doesn’t give you the same practice.
That being said shame on me, I did paint from a photo this year. My model wouldn’t sit still!
Here’s a brief video of my portrait in progress:
And here’s a selection of portraits I really liked from artists I am friends with: