Intentions of my Artwork – Samurai

In this post, I will be going over my intentions for the piece I call “Samurai” and look to see if I succeeded or failed.


In this piece, I wanted to paint I realistic face and draw attention to intense eyes whilst also giving context for such expression. I found myself brainstorming on how I could create a portrait that gives context to emotion. My first thought was a double exposure like these two pieces of mine that were featured very early on in my project.

Elizabeth - Double ExposureModel - Double Exposure

But that didn’t feel natural and wouldn’t be entirely truthful to the dry brush style I was experimenting with so I ended with the reflection of enemies in a drawn sword ready for battle. I then used the sword as a divide giving small highlights to the eyes and mouth where I could draw ferocity from.

My intentions were for the viewer’s eyes to start at the Samurai’s eyes travel down and across the sword horizontally before landing at his teeth.

Samurai - Analysis

Did I succeed? No. Whenever I look my eyes are drawn to his then his sword (Katana) but the shadow created from the sword and the helmet hide the teeth making it so that the viewer’s eyes stop at the bottom of the sword before travelling back up.

I do like this piece even though the viewer’s eye doesn’t travel in the intended way, my favourite bit about this piece is my tilt-shift effect by using “Gaussian Blur” to draw contrast between highly detailed foreground and the minimalist styled background.


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