Journeys with the Global Human Family

Faces of the World Centerpiece Painting
Portrait of the Global Human Family, original oil

This centerpiece painting provides the view of our incredible earth from outer space – surrounded by the open faces of 25 people of all ages. If you can imagine reducing the worlds population through the faces of my 25 friends in this global portrait, you would have some insight into the approximate color shape of the world as we step into the 21st Century.

In place of our present racial separation, I prefer to view, understand, and respect the people of our planet’s population as one global human family with millions upon millions of ovelapping color combinations, face and anatomical body structures, and an amazing diversity of ethnic and multicultural blends.

As a portrait artist with an easy and curious attraction to the people of our planet’s human drama, I have chosen to reflect in this painting, the trust and acceptance of the “open child” in the faces that I both appreciated and enjoyed. Each portrait also celebrates an important visual statement about the interesting facial differences in each individual, the culture and ethnicity each represents and the colorful common images in our planets human relations mosaic.

The above painting is followed in the succeeding web pages with selected examples from both my Faces of the World exhibition and book, with its original art photo reproductions of over 500 representative portraits of our human diversity and similarities in my 24 geographical regions of the world.

With the exception of the above centerpiece painting, in all of the 24 regional portrait paintings in my book (of which 5 examples are shown below), the placing of each separate portrait closely relates to the location each person lives in the corresponding regional map of our planets fascinating geography. For example, the portrait images at the top of each painting live in the north, at the bottom in the south, etc. of each region.

The Continent of Africa

Portrait of the Continent of Africa
Portrait of the Continent of Africa, original oil

Since most anthropologists agree that the human race realized its beginning on or near the African Continent, I selected this unique land formation of our Planet Earth as my first of 24 regional paintings. Africa’s 11,506,000 miles range over some of the most diverse – and legendary – landscapes in the world, from the banks of the Nile River, the sands of the Sahara Desert, and the jungles of the equatorial forests to the peaks of the Kilimanjaro.

As a land of urban and wilderness extremes, aboriginal, and modern lifestyles, Africa is perhaps best illustrated by its southern region. Its citizens range from the hunter-gatherer Bush people survivors in the harsh climate of the Kalahari (represented by my Bushman hunter friend in the lower center of the painting) to the urbanites of modern Johannesburg in South Africa, with its high-tech industrial complex. Among the vanishing cultures of the African continent, the Bushmen exemplified for me the very best of the African spirit. They shared with me their special humor, open laughter and graciousness in ways that exceeded the best definition of the word hospitality.

“My sincere hope for this book is that it will serve to remind its readers and its author of the need to give renewed understanding and respect for the innate human value and importance of all our global citizens.”

The British Isles

The British Isles encompasses four culturally different countries under the official name, The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. The countries representing Great Britain are England, Scotland and Wales.

Like the diversity of its spectacular landscape, the ethnic background of its people is surprisingly more varied than almost any other nation of similar size on earth. Recorded in its facial diversity is its history of successive invasions by five major peoples – the Romans – the Celts and Saxons from the Alps and mainland Europe – the Vikings – and the Normans of Northern France. More recently, this diversity reflects immigration from both inside and outside the boundaries of its former British Empire.

Separated by the Irish Sea from Great Britain and occupying five-sixths of the island of Ireland is the country of Ireland. To many visitors it is perceived as the most fiercely independent country to occupy the British Isles, having separated from the United Kingdom in 1921 to form its own independent nation, leaving Northern Ireland as a member nation of the UK (United Kingdom).

Portrait of the British Isles
Portrait of the British Isles, original oil

” A mature spirit of openness allows us to see, appreciate and respect each person as an individual candle of human worth. A mature spirit also fosters the most inclusive communication between humans of all racial, ethnic, cultural and religious families.”

South Asia – Subcontinent

Portrait of South Asia Subcontinent
Portrait of South Asia Subcontinent, Original Oil

India, Nepal, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka

Nearly 33,500 years ago, Aryan invaders from Central Asia spread over South Asia and founded one of the oldest civilizations on earth–India. Today this seventh largest country with a population of more than 850 million still nurtures its ancient heritage, one which has been tempered by many hundreds of years of foreign invasions and influence.

My painting depicts people from India’s three major races. In the north and in large sections of the Indian peninsula, the Aryan, a Caucasoid race, dominates. In the mountainous Himalayan region, which extends two thousand miles from Kashmir in the east to the spice coasts of Malabar, dwell people of the Mongoloid race, as represented by the three faces from Ladakh in the upper left corner of the work. In central and southern India, an aboriginal people known as the Vedda, or Dravidian, reside. From the heartland of India north to the magnetic charms of Kashmir, Ladakh, and Nepal, and east and south to the mesmerizing climes of Bangladesh and Sri Lanka, I enjoyed the cheerful, relaxed, but hardworking people of South Asia.

“When humor, especially the luxury of self humor (laughing at one’s self), flavors the human drama, something happens that literally frees one’s spirit to discover the goodness in others. It’s the oil that also opens the mind to trust certain conditions that may exist beyond one’s physical and psychological control.”

Islands of the Pacific

Micronesia, Melanesia, Polynesia

The vast Pacific Ocean spans a third of the globe, embracing three broad divisions of Oceanic peoples and cultures: the Micronesians, Polynesians, and Melanesians. Unfortunately, the original social structures and traditions of the Pacific island people have been disrupted over the past five centuries by various Western intrusions. Since Captain Cook’s arrival in the eighteenth century, especially, the West has adversely affected the region causing disease and commercial exploitation.

Yet, in spite of the continued Westernization of the Pacific islands, the people remain tied to the natural rhythms of their tropical environments. They live simply and openly, and maintain a healthy romance with the ordinary and everyday enjoyments. From the very young to the very old, their smiling faces reflect a carefree joy and genuine happiness with existence. Their friendliness, hospitality and sense of humor and independence will leave its imprint on those who take the time to appreciate the fascinating blend of cultures, races, and ethnicities that make up the inhabitants of the exotic western and southern Pacific islands.

Portrait of Pacific Islands
Portrait of Pacific Islands, Original Oil

“The deeper I journeyed into the human forest, the more convinced I became that to effectively interpret the human family and truly make my work live and breathe on canvas as a credible artist, I had to personally experience the people, their ways of being human, their instincts and their sense of community and family living. This was the only authentic way I could successfully translate the pulse of their culture and the many emotions that spilled out of each soul.”

Bhutan – My Shangri La Paradise

In this Bhutan web presentation, I have included for the reader’s benefit the full background narrative instead of the slimmed-down version used in the previous four examples of the regional features. In addition I provided a different composition and finished painting the unique apparel that each individual is wearing, instead of only an image of the clothing because of my premiere opening time constraints.

Surrounded by the dramatic Himalayan mountains of Tibet to the north and India to the south, this little nation, known as the land of the “peaceful dragon”, has produced a fiercely independent, self-sufficient people.

“No race, ethnic or religious group, possesses a superior awareness or intelligence over any other on this miniature earth in the limitless space of our Universe. With only different modes and levels of opportunity, we are all children of a common family learning through a similar preschool curriculum the expression of living and giving.”

Portrait of Bhutan
Portrait of Bhutan, Original Oil