Tag Archives: portraiture

Dropping in on US burlesque shows!

Minda Mae for Disabilitease by Suzanne Forbes July 19 2020Livestreaming shows means I can be anywhere, anytime, if I have the strength.

As I mentioned in this post, I am choosing to limit what I can do according to my level of fatigue, and set goals that are realistic. That means not trying to draw everyone in a show. I dropped in on day 2 of the Disabilitease Festival (which should not be confused with the UK-based show with the same name Disabilitease, which I also drew!) with the intent to draw a couple performers.

I drew the Festival producer Minda Mae, above, doing a beautiful seated bellydance.

Skirt Vonnegut for Disabilitease by Suzanne Forbes July 19 2020And I drew Skirt Vonnegut doing their Existentialism number, for the second time!

I drew Skirt several times last year during their tenure in Berlin, and they are a friend and serious collector of my work, so it was great to get a parallax view of this cool routine.

I also dropped in on “Burlesque at Home“, a great show I would have loved to have seen and drawn all of.

Miss Jessica for Burlesque At Home by Suzanne Forbes June 16 2020Above, New Orleans icon Miss Jay Broussard!

Aka, Jessica Champaign. What a legendary performance! Miss Jay was the finale.

Paul Aleksandr for Burlesque at Home by Suzanne Forbes July 23 2020And this is the lovely host, Paul Aleksandr.

Fellow creepy creature maker and glittery goth clown Paul Aleksandr hosted from the UK! I loved their blue look.

I am so grateful to my Patreon Patrons, whose monthly financial support lets me keep documenting an international bouquet of burlesque and drag performers while I work safely at home.

Portraits of my friend Tom, 1990.

June 12 1990 Tom at Dunn Bros by Rachel Ketchum aka Suzanne ForbesJune 12 1990 Tom at Dunn Bros by Rachel Ketchum aka Suzanne ForbesA big part of the praxis of portraiture is drawing the same people over and over.

You have to do it over and over, so you start to understand what characteristics make a face distinctive, what features identify someone. I had a teacher at Parsons who taught us that ear placement is critical, too!

Tom June 12 1990 at Dunn Bros by Rachel Ketchum aka Suzanne ForbesTom at Dunn Bros Coffee, June 1990.

Tom was one of my closet friends in early sobriety, during a year where I carried a sketchbook everywhere I went. He is a fellow New Yorker; we met at the halfway house after I finished my four months and while he was doing his. We become instant sobriety buddies and confidantes. Eventually he moved in for a while with me and my roommate Anita.

tom1990 Tom at Dunn Bros by Rachel Ketchum aka Suzanne ForbesTom at Dunn Bros. Coffee, summer 1990.

We went to recovery meetings almost every night, and went for coffee before or after.

Tom April 17 1990 by Rachel Ketchum aka Suzanne ForbesTom, outside Dunn Bros.

We spent a lot of time at the coffee shop!

Tom and Evan summer 1990 by Rachel Ketchum aka Suzanne ForbesTom, right, and Evan, a guy I briefly dated. Summer 1990.

1990 sketchbook with Tom by Rachel Ketchum aka Suzanne ForbesA sketchbook page from 1990 with a collection of heads, including two quick sketches of Tom.

I used to scribble and doodle and sketch in my notebooks, something I gave up completely after I became a courtroom artist and then a comic artist.

My pencil doesn’t move unless it’s work, since about 1992.

That’s ok, because I have delightful mixed media crafts and projects to play with!

None of these drawings had ever been photographed; until now, no record of them existed – if we had a fire or flood they would just be gone forever.

I am so grateful to my Patreon Patrons, whose monthly financial support makes it possible for me to take time to document my art archives.