By Ben Sorscher.
Sophomore Michael Chamberlin has always had a passion for drawing. Most recently this passion has manifested itself in a series of portraits of pop singer Lana Del Rey. Chamberlin has refined his careful technique after years of art classes at Seven Hills under the tutelage of art teacher Jason Knarr, whom he praises as “an amazing teacher who I’ve learned a lot from.” The aspiring artist describes his process: “For these portraits I’ve taken pictures of her [Del Rey] from the internet or stills from her music videos and made a raw sketch of it, then adding more detail until it is eventually complete.” Chamberlin started out with graphite pencils for the portraits, but has since dabbled with colored pencils, which he believes “capture the essence of people more.”
Chamberlin enjoys the music of Lana Del Rey, especially the lyrics, and believes her photos and music videos possess a certain “element of nostalgia.” He suggests that the vibrant, elaborate sets and costuming of such videos “make her music translate very well into visual arts.” Chamberlin hopes not only to harness Del Ray’s ability of self-expression in his portraits, but also to learn from it. From a practical perspective, he feels that “by focusing on one person I learn about how to draw people in general.”
In addition to portraits, Chamberlin has worked on a number of projects in and outside of school, his favorite being a collection of fashion sketches. “When I go to college I’d like to study fashion design”, said Chamberlin, “It [fashion], in addition to drawing, has always been a passion of mine.” He is also currently taking sewing lessons to help build up a portfolio. Chamberlin’s ambition combined with his evident creative potential will surely afford him opportunities in whatever field he pursues, and will hopefully give rise to a number of equally remarkable projects to come.