The BFF project consists of 127 drawings combining the faces of friends. Inspired by my two-year experience working as a forensic artist, I drew the faces of 64 pairs of combined friends. I then drew a series of composites of the composites, until finally arriving at one drawing emergent from all 128 faces.

I drew using charcoal pencils on 8.5 x 11″ Stonehenge paper – the same size used when I was working as a forensic artist. From 2007-2008, I accepted photo submissions for the project through my website. The first 64 people who sent in usable photos were included, and drawings were made in the order that the photos were received. Participants include people from many countries including the USA, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia, Brazil, and China. After years of intermittent work, the final drawing was completed in May 2018.

For Sets 1 and 2, I chose individual features from each face to be combined into a composite portrait (similar to the process I used while working as a forensic artist). For Sets 3-7, I averaged each individual facial feature together to create hybrid faces in an effort to remove my subjectivity from the compositing process. Hybridized names were created for all drawings as well.

From the initial set of 64, the original drawings have been sent to the friends of the people who sent in the photos (at least, to those I could still get in touch with) – an experiment in gift economy.

Set 1Set 2Set 3Set 4Set 5Set 6Set 7

This video shows every combined face in the project surrounded by the photos or drawings it is derived from.

This video shows the lineage from each photo submission through all seven sets of drawings to the final composite face.

BFF Set 1

BFF Set 2

BFF Set 3

BFF Set 4

BFF Set 5

BFF Set 6

BFF Set 7

Set #7, 1: Xeriotoph (Naritoph & Xeriomir)

Time-lapse rendering of the final drawing.