The artwork of Christopher J. Paulsen

About the Artist | Resume | Artist Statement | Latest News | Purchase a Piece | Main Page

Bodies of Work:



"House & Home"


"Sad Robots"


"On Beauty"
Runway Model 1
Runway Model 2
Runway Model 3
Cheerleader 1
Cheerleader 2
Cheerleader 3
Eye Candy 1
Eye Candy 2
Eye Candy 3
Model/Actress 1
Model/Actress 2
The War Wife
Liberal Arts
Who Knows You Best?
Dania Koren
Mi Magnolia

"Plastic Plants"

"The Hiking Trip"

"Bite-Sized Paintings"

Bite-Sized Painting Sale Precocious, a webcomic by Christopher J Paulsen The Sycophant, tbe sketch blog of Christopher J Paulsen

"On Beauty" Artist's Statement


The subject of the "On Beauty" series was formed from frustration and lack of focus. I needed a clear goal for painting and recreating drawings from my sketchbook was not it. One day, I followed a link someone sent me to a website featuring runway models from New York City's Fashion Week. Models! Of course! Beautiful women have inspired artists as long as artists have existed. Why did I not think of them?

I laughed at my own politically-correct nature. The "enlightened" crowd embraces a much wider concept of beauty - almost to a point where traditional beauty is rejected.

Models are derided because they represent a beauty that is unobtainable. These beauties are a product of make-up, lighting, framing, digital editing and a lifestyle that isn't very healthy. This impossible standard can impact women's self-esteem and distort men's fantasies. Models are very, very easy to hate.

But, by representing ideals, models are also vehicles for artists. Models can be treated as refined forms that can be shaped to fit a vision. Regular people as models can ground a work with all their regular-person flaws.

For this series, I have collection various images of women representing traditional/disputed concepts of beauty; such as runway models, swimsuit models and cheerleaders. Each of these women represents a form used to enhance their product. They make an edgy dress look elegant. They show off a swimsuit at ideal proportions. They keep interest piqued at sporting events.

Note that I have chosen not to address nude models. In the case of nudes, the form is selling itself. I am interested in beauty when it is used as a vehicle to promote something else.

With my beauties, I will use their forms as vehicles to enhance my paintings. Using the models as a jumping off point, I will abstract their forms and build upon them with my own ideas of beauty in painting. The women will be exaggerated to a cartoonish state and their curves and angles will be broken down to reveal the geometric underpinnings. The colors will be cheerfully vivid and capriciously chosen. By the end, the artwork will be expressly mine.

My use of models to get to my study of beautifully form can be seen as both conceptual and shallow. I embrace this contradictory nature, as this theme exists in some way through all of my work. This work is meant to be fun. After an emotionally draining year, a series such as this is refreshing.