Joel Daniel Phillips

Region: Pacific Coast

The only way to truly understand something is to draw it.
–Le Corbusier

At the center of my work is an attempt to sincerely grasp what I see around me through the tip of a pencil and a piece of charcoal. At its root, the act of drawing necessitates a concentrated study of not only the physical attributes of the subject, but the emotional as well. Every line in a face tells a story, and rendering this requires me to touch and explore each facet of my subject’s existence.

My work focuses primarily on portraiture at a monumental scale. I am fascinated by the intricacies and vulnerabilities that we share as humans, and search for moments when our projected sense of self is transparent. I pursue ways to peel back the protective veils that we display to the outside world.

A true portrait is far more than a rendering of physical form—it is a capturing of the uninvented narratives that make us human. Seeing and understanding these stories is my ultimate goal.