Book Review: Mixed Media Self Portraits

Creating self-portraits can be an incredibly cathartic experience, when made from textiles and assorted odd bits, they can become fascinating three-dimensional explorations into a person’s heart and soul. After examining some of the more famous self-portraits by the likes of van Gogh and Rembrandt, Prato challenges readers to examine their surroundings and themselves.

Beautifully illustrated with a wide range of compelling self-portraits, readers are taken through a range of exercises designed not only to teach but also to draw out the inner person. For those who claim they can’t draw there are a variety of computer techniques outlined that will get you started. Prominent features like eyes or nose become much easier to tackle when taken step at a time with the aid of a mirror. Basic color theory, use of photographs, creating journal dolls and masks and more are covered in sufficient detail to allow artists at any level express themselves.

The instructions are clear and concise with an upbeat, encouraging tone. Prato has done an excellent job of providing textile and multimedia artists the tools to self-exploration that will likely produce interesting pieces.


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