Meet Gabriel!

At the end of SOFA Day 1 Sami and I were sitting on a bench in front of his gallery. Sami was warming up to my collecting faces for portraits.

“Want this guy?” Sami pointed at a dark man studying a display of glass sculptures. “I know him, and he is handsome.” I wanted the guy, but was too tired to do my spiel again after having repeated it a dozen times that day.

Sami stood up and grabbed the man by his sleeve. “Here,” he commanded, “stand over here! She is going to photograph you for a portrait!”

The man took my hand and held it. “Gabriel.” He said in a soft voice. “Like the angel, you know?…” I knew. Immediately. My fashion statement of combat boots and a fleece 6 sizes too large apparently mattered very little.

Gabriel Eid is an art director of Galerie Frédéric Got of Paris. He brought some amazing bronzes to SOFA. Gabriel posed for a dozen of photos for me; and they looked good on the 2.5” display of my camera. But when I looked at them large they did not satisfy. They were average. Reasonable quality and showing likeness, they all were missing his personality.

When I found Gabriel again the next day, this time in his gallery, I got to experience a full blast of French charm. Gabriel speaks in a low voice making you step in closer. In 15 minutes of the second photo session I got more compliments and pointed interest in me and my work than I have had in a month. This can be addictive! I also got my winner shot.

#33 of 40. Graphite, Moleskine Cahier sketchbook

Share this:


  1. Reply
    lesliepaints November 28, 2010

    My goodness. His eyes can see thru me…. Very cool. I also like the texture in the jacket that you captured, Alex! And chest hair???? WHOA. You have learned so much and it is really fun to watch you carry this to the places you want to go with your art.

    • Reply
      Alex Zonis November 29, 2010

      😆 about your comment on chest hair! Yes, this the second time I put chest hair in, this one was easy – the hair was dark. The other case was white chest hair in the shadow under the shirt. That was hard. I had to do negative drawing and then tone it down until is was the right value. This project teaches me amazing things.

  2. Reply
    Carol King November 29, 2010

    Well, Hello Gabriel! He looks like the kind of guy who can sweep a gal off her feet with those dark eyes and that French accent!

    Ooh la la!

  3. Reply
    Artswebshow November 29, 2010

    Glad you got your winner shot.
    Your drawing is as always really good.
    Portraits must be your forte i guess

    • Reply
      Alex Zonis November 29, 2010

      I love you :D, Richard! If a year ago someone would tell me that portraits must be my forte, I would burst out laughing. I did my first portrait in August 2009, and it was a disaster. But I wanted to do portraits very badly, so I made my mind that I would practice until I get it. This sketchbook of portraits is result of that decision. Yes, it is The Sketchbook Project 2011 with all its rules, the book will go to NY and all that, but the most important thing I am getting from it is a sustained concentrated practice. And it seems this practice is beginning to show the results. Thank you so much for your comment – it made me really happy!

  4. Reply
    Nellie January 20, 2011

    Hello, your work is lovely, specially when you know Gabriel, I am a friend of him from long ago, I would like to contact him could you help me!

    Thank you in advance!


    • Reply
      Alex Zonis January 20, 2011

      Thank you for your comment, Nellie! I am so pleased you recognized Gabriel in my rendition. He gave me his card at the show, I am going to email you his email address – don’t want to post it on the internet.

      • Reply
        Gabriel April 10, 2011

        Merci Alex
        This Sunday I find out by chance that you realise a great artwork of me BRAVO… you knew really how to capture my eye expression ( le regard)…it is not easy I know , my regard is bizzare soemtimes Lol.
        send me your email and cell phone.
        i will conatct u
        By the way i will be this week in SOFA New York , let me know if you are around.
        all the best

    • Reply
      GABRIEL April 10, 2011

      Merci Nellie

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Animated Social Media Icons by Acurax Wordpress Development Company