The Portrait Project photo shoot

North Coast Artists' Guild presents:

The Portrait Project photo shoot

Saturday, January 17, 12 noon - 4 p.m.

Arts Center

Participants only; not open to the public.

The North Coast Artists’ Guild is hosting a new show called “The Portrait Project,” designed to bring the community at large and the arts community together. The actual show is scheduled for May, 2015, at the Gualala Arts Center but the preparations are underway now to sign up portrait sitters and artists for the project. If interested in participating in this project, either as a sitter and/or an artist, please contact Rozann Grunig at to make arrangements to be included in the photo shoot, the exhibit or both.

Photo of Jeff Cotton, by Harvey MendelsonPortrait of Jeff Cotton, by Perry Cordill

This is a three-phase project. Phase one is taking portraits of people in the community. Phase two is enrolling artists in any medium to interpret the portraits and phase three is a show starring each portrait and the interpretive work together.

Phase one of this project is scheduled for October 25 (an additional session has been scheduled for January 17), when portrait photographer Harvey Mendelson will be available at the Gualala Arts Center to take portraits of anyone in the community interested in participating. “Sitters should ‘come as you are,'” says Mendelson. “Don’t worry about hair or make-up, just plan to have fun.” Mendelson uses a single drape in each photo, the unifying element that ties the project together. “Sitters can use it as a cloak, a head scarf, over a shoulder or just hold it,” Mendelson notes. “Be creative!” The cost to have a portrait taken is $20 and the sitter will receive a copy of their portrait.

In phase two, artists, working in any medium, will be given one or more portraits to work with. They are encouraged to interpret what they see in the portrait, literally or figuratively, and create an entirely new work. Portraits will be available to artists starting in November, 2014.

Photo of Patrick Parks, by Harvey MendelsonPortrait of Patrick Parks, by Patty Bird

In May, 2015, the Gualala Arts Center will be the venue for the show that will bring the portraits and the interpretive artworks together. Each portrait will be framed and matted by Mendelson, then placed next to the corresponding interpretive work(s).

If the weather is inclement on either day of the photo shoots, the project will move to the studio space on the second floor of the Arts Center. Portrait Project registration forms to participate in The Portrait Project exhibit are available online or at the Arts Center.

Photo of Ciel Yogis, by Harvey MendelsonPortrait of Ciel Yogis, by Hope Sivera