Zanya Dahl

My childlike Self

  • Oil on Canvas
  • 18 x 24 x 1.5 in
  • Zanya Dahl
  • Not For Sale

This is my 2-year-old self with my 46-year-old self.

I felt compelled to paint these two versions of myself together because children are our guides when it comes to self-expression. Their way of being is playful, curious, open-hearted, creative, and spontaneous. I want to connect with these qualities more fully and painted this piece as a visual intention to do so.

After doing a few commissions on this theme of painting adults together with their childhood self, I was curious to find out how I would feel when painting this piece for myself.

Going through the family photo album. I found this image of two-year-old me enchanted by a single flower petal. I painted my adult self into the scene so that I can connect with little me in this moment of wonder and joy. It’s been really interesting to note, that while painting the piece, my attention was being drawn more and more to sensory experience that my adult self would previously have missed. It’s as if it brought this childlike way of seeing back to life.

  • Subject Matter: Self-portrait
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