This work represents the beginning of a new project exploring the manifestations of the alter ego in myself and in others. I argue that We all have an alter ego, but how many of us share or discuss this side of ourselves? Many I have spoken to have elaborate internal visions of themselves that they have kept private – mainly because they have never been asked what their alter ego is- but when I have asked the question ‘what is your alter ego’ I have often been surprised at how often that people not only have one, but have a detailed description of what this ‘other self’ is like.

Thus far the most common theme I have come across (with casual asking) are themes and characters from Greek and Norse myth. What is it about these stories that have such enduring appeal? There are of course variations, and not everyone has an internal legend that they maintain, many have more glamorous versions of themselves within that they ‘allow out’ from time to time.

My little informal study has prompted me to ask more, and potentially paint people’s alter egos as a contribution to portraiture as a whole, and thus make the internal external. We all have hidden selves, what happens when they are revealed to others?


Alter Egos: Making the Internal External

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