Last weekend, I was having a chat with my boyfriend when I happened to mention Frida Kahlo. He had no idea who she was. Somehow, he had managed to go almost 30 years without seeing any picture of the iconic woman or her artwork, and I felt the need to rectify that. I dragged him to my computer and Google Image searched her name, talking all the while about her life and her struggles, her colours and flowers, and of course those magnificent, defiant eyebrows.
Consequently, I’ve been thinking about Frida all week, and when I picked up my sketchbook last night it was to draw her face. Or, rather, to draw a face…Fridafied. I started with a pen drawing but I ultimately ended up on Photoshop, where I completely let loose. I layered colours over colours and textures over textures. Pattern, blur, filter, smudge. Spots, dots, swipes and stripes. I ended up with a whole series of Fridas, which is what I’m showing you today.
A lot of her artwork is dark and morbid, which is not my usual cup of tea. I doubt I’d be as interested in the artwork if Frida herself wasn’t such a dynamic and colourful figure. On the flip side, I’d probably find her flowery hairdos and rosy cheeks a bit sickly sweet if I didn’t have the artwork to provide contrast. It’s as though you have to view her and her art as a package, in order to appreciate both fully. They complement and provide context for each other…and they’re both pieces of art.
Oh, oh Frida.