young vincent

I sketched this from the only authenticated photo of Vincent van Gogh, taken when he was 19. While he famously recorded himself in many selfie paintings, he apparently refused to sit for photographs as an adult. He didn’t even want to see photos of his family members.

He wrote to his sister Willemien on September 19, 1889, “I myself still find photographs frightful and don’t like to have any, especially not of people whom I know and love. These portraits, first, are faded more quickly than we ourselves, while the painted portrait remains for many generations. Besides, a painted portrait is a thing of feeling made with love or respect for the being represented.”