Great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you
the strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars to
change the world." Harriet Tubman
Harriet Tubman: abolitionist, activist, Union spy and scout, nurse, writer, humanitarian and early supporter of woman's suffrage movement.
Called the “The Moses of her People” she was a courageous and committed “conductor” of the Underground Railroad. Tubman was never caught and never lost a "passenger" of the nearly 300 slaves she lead to freedom. Only 5 feet tall, she was strong and fearless, she carried a pistol and dressed in disquises!
Harriet raised funds to help freedmen, and in later years was an activist, joining Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton on the movement for women's suffrage.
She is considered the first African American woman to serve in the military and died in 1913, about 93 years old, with full military honors at Fort Hill Cemetery in Auburn New York.
As part of this project, "A Tribute to American Women Leaders," I have recorded the development of each oil on linen portrait. I thought this would add more viewer engagement with the subject, the portrait and the portrait progress.
I chose to portray Harriet Tubman as a younger woman, when she was still so strong and vibrant, also, because the public usually sees her photo image as an older woman.
usual, I begin my portraits with a oil paint block in, just to get a
base of color down on the canvas, upon which I will build up layers of
paint. At this point, I am not concerned with the likeness during these
early stages, as with the building up of layers of paint the facial
structure will begin to form and the features will fall into place.
|Early block in and reference photo for portrait ( on left)|
|Further blocking in of paint layers|
|More development of the features|
Harriet Tubman was elected into the National Women's Hall of Fame in 1973.
Tubman, Harriet - National Women’s Hall of Fame (womenofthehall.org)
To learn more about my "A Tribute to American Women Leaders" project visit this post on my blog:
For more information, to contact me or to see more of my portraiture, please visit my website: www.susandurkee.com
Thank you for taking the time to read this honorary blog celebrating such an important American woman leader.