Deborah Hamon

Region: Pacific Coast


City / State: Novato, CA

The images I create are universal portraits, rather than portraits of specific girls, that explore my ideas about identity development. While I feel that the girls in my paintings have become more lifelike, I am experimenting with making the background elements more unexpected by juxtaposing realism with loose brushwork, inventive color, decorative elements, graphic lines and sometimes text. Furthermore, the figures from my paintings go on to populate photographs that I construct in Photoshop to create a believable, yet curious new reality.

While girlhood is filled with intense feelings, friendships and discoveries, it is ultimately a solo endeavor as a girl must decipher her distinctive role in the world. Whether my images evoke a narrative, explore a relationship dynamic, or focus on a solitary girl, I try to reflect this sense of isolation. With quirkiness being a cornerstone of my work, I am drawn to things that may feel slightly awkward or strangely beautiful. I try and push towards something that is a little bit edgy yet still keep a quiet subtlety in the work. I want to capture that moment when confidence and insecurity, whimsy and seriousness, innocence and knowledge can all exist.