Frequent Questions

How often do you draw and when do you upload new images? The creation and post dates don’t seem to match.
I make a drawing daily, but I give myself 24 hours to add each to the blog. This gives me perspective on the piece as well as time to photograph and post.

How do you decide what to draw?
Other than the self-imposed rule that the drawings have to be self-portraits from life, my project parameters allow for fairly open-ended experimentation. To narrow the possibilities, I usually choose something that has caught my attention on a particular day. This may be positive (look at the lovely curve defined by my hip) or slightly less than positive (I feel bloopy). I’m also inspired by different art media. Sometimes I feel compelled to render in charcoal while other times I want to fling mixed media at a loose gesture drawing.

Do the drawings chart progress in any structured way?
Each Saturday, I create a full figure 18” x 24″ drawing. Over the course of each month I complete one three-quarter view, one front view, one side view and one rear view to serve as benchmarks.

Aren’t you embarrassed to draw yourself naked and put it online?
Yup, a little, though not entirely for the reason you might think. I’m a figurative artist, so I see and draw lots of nudes. Perhaps because of this, it seems only a little blush-worthy to bare my own bits. What IS difficult is sharing the drawings themselves, especially those I consider less than successful. However, I have come to realize that raging perfectionism chokes my art practice, and so I hope to break its hold by putting the cringe-tacular out there with the good. There’s value in honesty, right? …right?

What are those numbers at the top of each post (223.0, etc.)?
Alas, those are not hourly blog views or the amount I’m getting paid or anything cheery like that. The numbers are my daily weight in pounds. DrawDown got it’s start as journaled weight loss. Although the concept has expanded, I still feel it is important to record.

…So this is a diet?
Egad…. be careful how you use the dreaded “D” word! While I am making some healthy lifestyle changes, weight loss is only one measure of progress. Ultimately, the project is about coming back after a difficult time and, more generally, about what makes me who I am.

You put the numbers on there, so weight must be important; what if you don’t lose any?
Weight loss was the inspiration for DrawDown, but it is no longer the central goal. That said, yes, the ugly duckling in me—the one who wonders what the golly heck happened to swan phase—is desperate to shed pounds. However, even if I didn’t like to eat (which I do, because it’s amazing), my metabolism is regulated with prescription drugs rather than biology. Under these conditions, shrinking my waistline may simply not be possible. However, other positive changes are.

Did you know you’re not supposed to weigh yourself every day?
Boy do I! My scale is clearly possessed by a trickster spirit who delights in sneaking his icy finger onto the pressure sensor thus causing the number to inexplicably jump two pounds. True story. And, seriously, if he’s going to pull that crud, why did I just eat the Boring Salad of Boringness instead of Pasta ala Cheese-slab?!? Ka-sigh. But, I must remember my earlier words; namely, the ones explaining (to me as much as anyone else) that the big picture is about much more than tush-to-jeans ratio.

This isn’t attractive; does it really need to be on the internet? Can’t you just obsess in the privacy of your own mirror?
The internet is a critical place, so perhaps it’s natural to wonder why I put my less-than-ideal struggles online. As an artist, I am driven to communicate content I find powerful or relevant. Although some people will be happier navigating far far away from this site, I hope others will find meaning in what I am attempting.

Where can I find more information?
Please check out details about concept, structure and goals on the inspiration and project parameters pages. For more information on me as an artist, visit my website www.dlzartner.com.

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