Artist Josh Connell shares his portfolio of amazingly realistic charcoal and graphite portraits that explore the human condition. See more of his work by visiting his website.
I am a self-taught artist living and working in Quinte, Ontario. I use charcoal and graphite to draw photorealistic images of people.
I am fascinated by human beings. I hope my work will reflect this. Like all of us, I change with time and so the theme of my work changes too. I strongly believe, however, that the art I create will always be deeply influenced by my curiosity for our species.
It is my opinion that we have never before been a more complex or interesting animal. This present moment has been conjured up by all of history, and we as a species are a product of everything and everyone that has come before us. This is also perhaps the most confusing time for the human race. There is an overwhelming amount of disorienting chatter in the world today and it seems to be inescapable.
I have recently completed a series of five self-portraits exploring and hoping to come to terms with some of the negative aspects of my human experience. These aspects I believe to be both supported by and the result of the dizzying confusion that surrounds me. At the time of completion, I felt I was unsuccessful in illuminating anything useful to assist me with my mental health.
Since then, I have completed four other pieces that in one way or another explore human themes or conditions. I think now, after further observation of the world and continued introspection, that I was approaching healing from the wrong direction. Focusing on the ills of humanity and of my mind was not alleviating them.
Listen beautiful relax classics on our Youtube channel.
There is so much separation in the world right now. There appears to be so many sides to take that we often find ourselves living across from one another instead of beside each other.
I think the solution to reducing our confusion and our perceived separation is likely to be love. That may seem too simple a cure, but perhaps the answer to the complexity of human civilization is not more complexity. Perhaps civilization just needs an insurgence of love.
My plan for the future is to use my art to create portraits of love, which is to say portraits of humans. Any human. My intention is to draw portraits of people and title them “Love.”
No explanations, no artist insight, just an image of a human being and the single word title. Then silence. Allow you the viewer to make your own authentic connection to the work.
Perhaps in the silence we can find a little more love.
Want to stay current on cutting edge business articles from Artsy Shark, plus artist features, and an invitation to the next Call for Artists? Subscribe to our twice-monthly Updates, and get a free e-book on Where to Sell Art Online right now!