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BacktoBasics:AnArtSeriesAboutWomeninMusic

Paley Jean Martin
Paley Jean Martin Editorial at TIDAL // Artist at Paley Jean
4mo Brooklyn, NY, USA Story
Back to Basics: An Art Series About Women in Music

A few months ago, I started an art series called Back to Basics. The series comprises black and white line drawings of the women in music -- Lauryn Hill, Rihanna, Celia Cruz, SZA and more -- who inspired me. 

The title Back to Basics refers to my use of solely paper and pen. Consisting of only black and white line drawings, the series focuses more on the pose, the expression and, of course, the person than the frills of color or mixed media. Further, the drawings are intended to capture the essence of the artist instead of perfecting an exact replica. Without color, each woman feels distinctly unique and somehow the same -- a collective of strong, influential artists from around the world, each one with her own story to tell.

I've always been slightly obsessed with portraiture and body language. Portraits capture a frozen moment in time, and yet ironically invite us to shape our perception of a person and the world surrounding them. (Instagram, anyone?) We have the ability to tell a story with our bodies and faces, and that is something that will always fascinate me... 

In this series, which is still ongoing (yet currently on pause), I found pictures of each of these artists that represented how I perceived them: Sade cooly leaning over to smell a rose, a young Celia Cruz girlishly grinning with delight, the list goes on. 

You can click here to check out more of the drawings and feel free to comment if you'd like to see one of your favorites in this collection. And if you have the time, tell me what they mean to you!


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Paley Jean Martin
Editorial at TIDAL // Artist at Paley Jean

Hi, friends! I'm a Brooklyn-based artist, writer and radio host! I currently work at TIDAL, make art as a passion and side hustle and host a weekly radio show called Sweet Sunday Radio. I'm excited to join this awesome community and am always open for collaborations whether in art, music or life in [...]

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