psychological portraits

Mental Health Month 

May is the month of Mental health awareness. That’s so important, I’ve always said that there’s nothing in your general well being more important that having a good mental health, that helps you in so many ways… For example if you have a problem with your legs or arms you can use your mind to have a good attitude that helps you to deal from that bad condition, but if your mind it’s the one that is in bad condition you have a harder mission. That’s way we always need to take care about our mental health, not to be afraid to speak and look for help when we feel / think there’s something going wrong. 


ci guardano, ci  osservano, qualcuno sorride ironico, qualche altro ci guarda con arroganza, o con fermezza. Se ci spostiamo il loro sguardo ci segue, ci controlla, ci interroga. Sono i ritratti eseguiti da Antonello da Messina, un punto importante della pittura italiana in cui l'abilità pittorica esalta quella psicologica del personaggio ritratto.  Chi era l'antico marinaio, un parente ? un amico ? chi era il vecchio che ci guarda con altergia e supponenza? chi il giovane dallo sguardo fermo e deciso? chi la ragazza che un semplice telo azzurro, appena aperto con ancora evidente il segno della piega, trasforma in una madonna, dallo sguardo sereno e profetico eppur benevolo e puro nella sua semplicità. L'uomo è uno scrigno dalle mille serrature e quanto vi trovi dentro cambia a seconda della serratura che usi, questo era forse il messaggio che Antonello ha lasciato in quelli sguardi che cambiano di personaggio in personaggio e che scrutano la nostra anima interrogandosi anche loro su di noi.

they are watching us, they are observing us, someone smiles ironically, a few more looks at us with arrogance, or firmly. If we move, their eyes following us, controls us, makes us wonder. They are the portraits done by Antonello da Messina, an important point of Italian painting in which the pictorial ability enhances the psychological portrait of the character. Who was the old sailor, a relative? a friend ? Who was the old man who looks at us with  arrogance? who the young man with the firm and determined look? Who the girl that a simple blue tarp, (just opened with still evident sign of the fold), that became a madonna, from serene and prophetic vision and yet benevolent and pure in its simplicity. The man is a treasure trove of a thousand locks and what we can find inside changes depending on the lock you use, this was perhaps the message that Antonello left in those eyes that change from character to character and have been surveying our soul even questioning about us.

anonymous asked:

you said that you felt as though the crucible is a far more character-driven piece of work than many others perceive it as; may i ask for your opinion on some of the characters? i love the crucible, and i love hearing your thoughts on things perhaps even more so. thank you!

Absolutely—that Miller took pains to describe them at length, to give us a glimpse of their psyche before they step on scene, is a touch I absolutely loved; I wonder how this plays out on scene, and if directors have incorporated the psychological portraits in performance.

The trio of my favourites comprises, of course, John, Elizabeth, and Abigail. John particularly strikes me as one of the great figures of literature: crippled by his flaws, but aware of them, striving for a redemption he would not allow himself to seize, changeable, violent and tender, deeply brave, and yet lapsing time and time again in tremors of outspoken fear, I found him so compelling. Because of the medium, he is forced to express what he would most likely keep in check in a novel: and giving a voice—a defying, sometimes mad voice— to the stream of his consciousness, his anger, his panic grounds the play in timeless humanity—beyond its social commentary. His context, the metaphorics behind it, everything is secondary—what matters is John himself, and how a man reacts when his life is just streaming out between his open fingers.

Elizabeth is the other side of this crisis: and because she’s first described through other words, she appears timid, demure—but her reserve breaks down as the play advances, and her wiser, calmer walk to the scaffold, the nagging voice of her realism creates a fascinating dynamic within the couple, and between herself and her environment, especially against Abigail’s extreme reactions, her explosive theatricality.

Abigail I fell in love with immediately, before I knew what the play was about, before I understood she was the bad apple of the bunch. The way she replied to her uncle, her barely hushed arrogance and violence, the capricious possessiveness of John, the sensuality of her words—mingling sex, love, witchcraft, and destruction alarmingly, same vocabulary, same images over and over again. This charisma and confidence are quickly put to “good” use in the control she exerts from the other girls. When she’s definitively refused by John, rather than checking her behaviour, she opens the gate to the dormant monster inside her: and her cruelty, her irrational frenzy, the pettiness of her retribution are truly frightening. I would love to know how this plays out on stage—if the tension, the fear she instils in others are as perceptible as it is on the page.

In any case, this is all completely subjective, but, gosh! Miller really infused his historical figures with an astounding life and presence.  

The Sound of the Ocean is Dead

Fandom: Hawaii Five-0

Link to story

Author: Portrait of a Fool

Summary: It’s terrible the way fifty eight hours can feel like forever. Like it will never end.

Warning: Includes violent/sensitive subject matter

Words: 27,399

Genre: Angst, hurt and comfort

Main character in turmoil: Steve McGarrett

Comment by reader:  All I can say is how short fics can sometimes ooze more whump and recovery than actual long fics…

Excerpt: “ Breath hitching in his chest, Steve struggles to push himself up from the road and onto his feet again. His shoulder is still jittering away, worse now than before, like a broken wing flopping uselessly and he can’t catch his breath. It’s not going in far enough to do him any good. He’s sweating and still, he’s cold. There’s a mountain sitting on his chest that shouldn’t be there and he cannot breathe.”

See what they all have in common? Aside from being paintings?

6 Mind-Blowing Discoveries We Just Made About Famous Art

#6. Portraits Usually Show the Left Side of the Face Due to a Weird Brain Bias

Sam Kean, author of The Tale of the Dueling Neurosurgeons, studied this weird phenomenon. He says that if the choice of which side to depict was totally random, we would find that gallery collections have roughly a third of all portraits facing straight forward, a third facing to the left, and a third facing to the right (obviously). However, studies show that this isn’t the case – about 60 percent of subjects sit with their left cheek facing the viewer, their left eye practically in the middle of the painting. It’s twice as common as it should be.

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In our recent post on Philippe Halsman’s photographic work with Julie Andrews in the late 1950s-early 1960s, it was mentioned that the famed photographer returned to work with Julie again during the filming of Hawaii in the summer of 1965. In the few short years that intervened, Julie had suddenly become one of the hottest movie stars on the planet – courtesy of Mary Poppins and The Sound of Music – and was in extraordinary demand. So it was that in July/August 1965, Philippe Halsman was dispatched to Honolulu “to shoot Julie Andrews in the filming of ‘Hawaii’“ (Wilson, 4).

Ostensibly on freelance assignment for Look magazine, Halsman took a series of portraits and candid shots that ended up gracing the pages of not just Look but a host of magazines and newspapers throughout the world. Halsman photographed Julie over several days and in several contexts with the most widely circulated images stemming from two ‘glamour’ shoots he did with Julie on the film set at Makua and a third candid shoot with Julie and infant daughter Emma relaxing on Kahala beach near her Honolulu residence.

As discussed in the previous entry, Halsman’s guiding philosophy as a photographer was to get “beyond the mask” of his subjects and express something of their inner emotional being (Halsman, 1981). “A true portrait,” he declared, “is a photograph which captures some of the essence of the subject’s character, and reveals something of the personality or nature of the person” (Desfor, 3-E). To facilitate this effect, Halsman would, among other things, engage his sitter in deep conversation, “making the subject forget he or she is being photographed” and use “music, props or words” to “register a subject’s spontaneous reaction” (ibid.).

We have no record of what passed between Halsman and Julie on the beaches of Hawaii, but whatever tactics the photographer used were clearly effective because, once again, he achieves a refreshingly candid and original view of the star. At once natural and unguarded, Halsman’s Hawaiian shots depict Julie in a dynamic range of moods and guises from pensive, sensual and playful to carefree, joyous, and affectionate. Press copy accompanying the shots made frequent note of the fact Halsman was able to get Julie looking so exceptionally relaxed and at ease:

“Sun and sand often create mirages. For instance, our cover girl – Hollywood’s most wanted actress, Julie Andrews, looks as if she’s relaxing on a beach. That’s a mirage – no female has any time for beach-combing, who in three years has raked in more money than all the Presidents since Harry Truman…On the day portraitist Philippe Halsman staged the ‘relaxation’ shot on an Hawaiian beach, the little English Cinderella girl had arisen as usual at 5:45 a.m., gulped a cup of black coffee, spent two crack-of-dawn hours on the ‘Hawaii’ set having her face and hair fussed over while dictating letters and discussing publicity projects, had sweated through eight hours of camera glare to eke out two minutes of worthy film and snatched a plebeian lunch at the company commissary” (“No Time,” 19)

For our money, part of the reason Halsman was such a good fit for Julie as a photographer was that he gave her space and license to move…literally. Unlike classic portraitists for whom stillness and poise is a paramount objective – it’s not without reason that traditional portraits are called “sittings” – Halsman regularly encouraged his subjects to physical activity as a way of both loosening up and letting out their inner character. His so-called “jumpology,” also profiled in the last post, was the most famous example but Halsman would frequently exhort his subjects to move in other ways – dancing, skipping, walking, whatever felt comfortable or came naturally to them. In many of Halsman’s Hawaiian shots, we see Julie mid-action: twirling, strolling, crouching, clowning. Even in the seemingly still shots, there is a suggestion of movement and/or an emphasis on physical gesture with Julie leaning forward, cocking her head, raising her arm.

Julie has often commented that, because she is by nature an active, effervescent sort of personality, “stillness” doesn’t come easily to her. Indeed, apropos Hawaii Julie claimed that she initially struggled with the part of Jerusha because “I wasn’t as subdued as she was. My personality is more bubbly. And I felt I wasn’t doing anything, just repressing myself and being her” (Gelmis, I-6). Director George Roy Hill even joked that “She’s always doing something, bubbling and bouncing, but the part of Jerusha was very still, so I had to put her in a vice and tell her, ‘When in doubt, do nothing’“ (Stirling, 164). By allowing Julie to indulge her penchant for physical and emotional ebullience, Halsman arguably captured something of the inner essence of the star, creating some of the most memorable portraits of her from this part of her career.


Desfor, Irving. “Tips on Taking True Portraits.” News Journal. 8 February 1976: 3-E.

Gelmis, Joseph. “Julie Andrews: Happy Superstar.” The Toledo Blade. 29 September 1968: I-1, 6.

Halsman, Philippe. Sight and Insight. Garden City: Doubleday, 1972.

________________. The Mask Falls: Psychological Portraits. Baltimore, MD: Harris Galleries, 1981.

“No Time on her Hands.” This Week Magazine. 18 September 1966: 19.

Morgan, Thomas B. “Julie, Baby.” Look. 28 December 1965: 47-56.

Stirling, Richard. Julie Andrews: An Intimate Biography. London: MacMillan, 2008.

Wilson, Earl. “It Happened Last Night.” The Morning Herald. 31 July 1965: 4.

© 2016, Brett Farmer. All Rights Reserved.


for yoongi’s b-day!!! i love him. what a smol marshmallow. i love him so much 

  • lazy………………wants to hire a maid to wash his palette every day
  • but it’s too bad. he has to do it himself
  • sometimes he makes his favorite model jeon jungkook do it instead but jungkook doesn’t mind (he gets paid more $$$)
  • seems very mean but is actually very nice to his models, don’t tell him this though (”i’m only nice to him because i can’t afford to lose him!! no one in seoul has thighs like jeon jungkook”)
  • treasures all of his brushes
  • but they eventually get worn out and he has to buy new ones and he lays the old ones in the trash v gently makes sure they’re comfortable
  • likes to say that he has one good drawing out of like a hundred
  • “what are you saying???? they’re all good” “you’re not an artist park jimin shut up”
  • kim seokjin is also a regular model of his like have you seen that face
  • but he’s also v stuck up like pLS,, stop doing poses just SIT DOWN
  • sometimes his boyfriend comes over and yoongi gets very, very uncomfortable…;; no…this is my job…..i have to draw your boyfriend naked and im very, very sorry
  • and namjoon is totally okay with it like yes he has an attractive boyfriend this is just the shit he has to deal with
  • jin just likes modelling
  • “fuck whY do i have to deal with this like it’s honestly not my problem if you can’t fucking DRAW” his apprentice jung hoseok has to deal with this every day
  • when asked hoseok said “i swear he’s actually nice he’s just an old grumpy grandpa at first glance. and second. and third, and fourth”
  • also min yoongi hates watercolors. they are the bane of his entire existence. like you can’t cover them up. you can’t do anything once they’ve dried. one wrong move and bam everything is ruined
  • he hates watercolors. 
  • acrylics are where it’s at motherfucker
  • oil paints???? yes they’re nice but a pain in the ass to dry sometimes when he needs to get things done fast
  • plus jin steals all his wax paper to fuckin bake he should be PAYING yoongi for this but no
  • he needs his goddamn wax paper to oil paint 
  • his biggest pet peeve is people asking him if he can help them with crafts and projects and sculptures (*cOUGH* kim taehyung) like NO. JUST BECAUSE I DO ART D OES N’T MEAN I CAN DO ALL THE ART
  • sculptor kim taehyung is just a huge annoyance honestly
  • one day his best friend park jimin and jungkook meet. and no no no . the worst day in his life
  • they are smitten someone help them
  • min yoongi hates that he’s the catalyst of this relationship
  • disgusting
  • because HE’s forever alone
  • like thanks hoseok for introducing me to this sculptor kim taehyung but don’t fucking do pda in front of my virgin eyes
  • why don’t people understand that he’s asexual like PLEASE stop trying to hook him up 
  • no, he doesn’t get a boner from looking at naked bodies
  • art + life are very separate
  • people don’t understand his obsession with rembrandt
  • god. his life dream is to go to the netherlands. 
  • rembrandt van rijn was the greatest man who ever lived. it’s a pity he died at all
  • “can YOU paint the nightwatch??? no???? well then fuck off”
  • “can YOU develop chiaroscuro??? no???? FUCK OFF”
  • “can YOU create your own style of etching while being prolific as a psychological portrait painter??? NO???? WELL THEN FUCK!! off”
  • he only uses big words when he’s ranting about rembrandt, his one and only greatest love
  • constantly laments the greatest tragedy: rembrandt died penniless
  • always wonders why he doesn’t get more commissions b/c he’s pretty famous like he’s done a few exhibitions of only his own work
  • then
  • he checks his email
  • and it’s like “…woah. there’s someone trying to commission something from like two years ago. oh, this one is from last june. ahh, i remember reading this too bad it was like three months ago oh well” 
  • paints things for his friends for their birthdays
  • also tends to enjoy using charcoal + graphite + pastels
  • paints what he wants
  • saw jimin staring out of the window with light shining on his angelic face
  • painted it (jimin cried for like 3 days when yoongi gave it to him)
  • saw hoseok planting flowers in the garden
  • painted it
  • saw taehyung going to the bathroom
  • didn’t tell him jungkook was already in there oops
  • is actually offended when someone doesn’t recognize his name like PLEASE yoongi you aren’t that great yet
  • has to beg his friends to buy him new paints sometimes 
  • always running out of white paint 
  • “one day when im rich and famous,, i mean, more famous, i’ll buy the canvasses with the thicker wood backing i PROMISE”
  • one word or symbol to describe min yoongi the artist?
  • tsundere

On this day, 17 February 1905, the assassination of Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich, general-governor of Moscow, was committed in the Kremlin by the member of the Combat Organization of the Social-Revolutionary Party  Ivan Kalyayev. 

Grand Duke, son of Alexander II and uncle of Nicholas II, had a bad reputation and was known for his strong conservative position and antisemitism. Also he was accused of the tragedy on Khodynka because he was responsible for its organization in 1896. 

The bomb was thrown to the carriage with Grand Duke and tore his body to pieces. Kalyayev was arrested at the scene because he was in a daze and had no strength to escape. The last photo showed him after the assassination. Later Kalyayev was hanged. 

Among his comrades Kalyayev was known for his idealistic nature and romantic poetry. His figure inspired many authors - Alexander Block, Leonid Andreyev (The governor), Zinaida Gippius, Maxim Gorky, Albert Camus (The righteous) and so on. Also there is a book of his comrade, revolutionary Boris Savinkov,“The pale horse” based on this story. Savinkov described there a psychological portrait of Kalyayev and the book contains a lot of interesting material about revolutionary activity of that time.


The Fits (2015), dir. Anna Rose Holmer

A psychological portrait of 11-year-old Toni-a tomboy assimilating to a tight-knit dance team in Cincinnati’s West End. Enamored by the power and confidence of this strong community of girls, Toni eagerly absorbs routines, masters drills, and even pierces her own ears to fit in. When a mysterious outbreak of fainting spells plagues the team, Toni’s desire for acceptance is twisted.