New Art: Selfies From Alternate Universes #11 & 12

SFAU #11 & 12, by Eric Wayne. Digital paintings, 3/2018.


If you are new to this series all the images are based on recent photos of me after being fed through Faceapp (which can change age, gender, etc.), then altered in Photoshop, and then painted in Corel Painter. None of the people actually exist, and thus they are like portraits from parallel dimensions or alternate universes.


A couple more fellows for the collection, and it’s now an even 6 males and 6 females. It’s not a diptych, I just often share them in pairs for comparison and contrast. Though I do think the pairs are interesting and they could be shared that way. At the bottom of the post I’ll share the 6 pairs so far and you can vote on your favorite.

It occurs to me that people may think this series is very narcissistic. I can see why. I am the subject. But here’s a fun fact for you. I never took a selfie until I started this series. Of course I’ve taken a handful of pics of myself over the years (usually for a job application), but I hadn’t taken one with my smart phone. I just hadn’t bothered. And when selfie-sticks came out I thought they were a joke (literally, as in I laughed). But now, for this series, I have to take selfies to get fodder to work with! But I am definitely not the sort of person who posts new selfies on Facebook every so often. In fact, part of the reason I started this work is that there are so few pics of me that there may be a whole decade where there isn’t a single photograph I know of documenting my existence (say, 30-40). This preamble is because #11 looks like a selfie proper.


SFAU #11

SFAU #11, by Eric Wayne. Digital painting, 20×25″ @300pdi., 3/018.

This is a younger version of myself, mostly, was and relatively straight forward as compared to #9 & #10 (the old woman and  the little girl). Below is the original photo and the final painting (looks like a photo when zoomed out):

Original photo and final painting.

I altered the composition, of course, removed extraneous crap, warped the ground (so it’s more rounded), and invented more of the right shoulder in order to create more space on the left. Photoshop! One of the reasons I chose this image to work with is the hair. It’s very difficult to fake hair, and I have to do it in almost every image, but this one had glowing strands on the top. It helps round out the series having different sorts of details in different images.

Here are a few details:


SFAU #12

SFAU #12, by Eric Wayne. Digital painting, 24×26″ @300pdi., 3/018

If you are middle-aged, like me — and some would say I’m already old, ’cause I’m 52 — sometimes you look older than other times. When I work on these older versions of myself, I start to think that’s really not so far off from what I already look like. I get used to it and accept my age. I know I’m not bald and I don’t have those extreme bags under my eyes, but I start to believe I’m a lot closer to that stage than I really am.

I decided to dig up the original photo for a before & after pic, which I’ll sometimes share in my blog posts, but not in the final series (because I don’t want to be in it exactly as I am). I was surprised how much younger I still am:

Original photo and final version.

The app didn’t make me bald. I did that in Photoshop. It also doesn’t know that the top of my head isn’t rounded but comes to a bit of a point. I know that because I’ve shaved my head before. There’s some Photoshopping of the background to get rid of distracting elements. I got rid of one window and made another bigger… The photo comes from a restaurant, but I gave it a bit more of a metal shop or warehouse feel.

Here are a few details:

And here are all 6 pairs in order (click through to see them clearly):

I do rather like them as diptychs, I think. It adds another dimension. A good thing about working digitally is I don’t have to choose, they can be presented either way.


~ Ends


And if you like the (experimental) sort of art that I do, and you don’t want me to have to quit or put it on a back-burner, please consider chipping in so I can keep working until I drop. Through Patreon, you can give $1 (or more) per month to help keep me going (y’know, so I don’t have to put art back on the back-burner while I slog away at a full-time job). Ah, if only I could amass a few hundred dollars per month this way, I could focus entirely on my art and writing. See how it works here.

Or go directly to my account.

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Or you can make a small, one time donation to help me keep on making art and blogging (and restore my faith in humanity simultaneously).

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4 thoughts on “New Art: Selfies From Alternate Universes #11 & 12

  1. I really appreciate the details, the paintings look very photorealistic otherwise. So far I seem to prefer the older versions, as I find more emotion in the lines and wrinkles, and they’re more experimental and farther from your image. See, they don’t come off as narcissistic at all.

    Can I vote when you’re done with the series?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I don’t know when I’ll be done. I have so many candidates I want to realize, and art for me is largely experimental and about discovery. I would never have predicted #9 and #10. And so I’m interested to discover what more images will reveal or how they will develop. I don’t know what I will discover about myself, or about people in general, about identity, consciousness, and so on.

      You’ve seen 12 of them. Try to imagine what 13 might look like and see if I surprise you. It’s already under way.

      I rather like that the ones that look the most like me are the least interesting because the least revealing. If that weren’t the case I wouldn’t be doing the series. It is somehow more penetrating to see different versions of me than if I just did normal ones. And the ones that look like me are also strangely not me because, for example, I wouldn’t take a selfie to begin with. What initially drew me to the app is the rife possibilities in the terrain of digital manipulation of images, which is a enormous part of my art. But perhaps in a slightly different life I would take vain selfies. It would be wrong to assume the ones that look the most like me ARE the most like me, ironically enough.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Wow. You look man-pretty. 555 And then you look frightening. If people knew what they looked like when they got older, would they take better care of themselves? Accept it? Hmmmm.

    Liked by 2 people

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