This artist drew self-portraits on 50 different drugs (Photos)

50 days, 50 drugs, 50 self-portraits

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Bryan Lewis Saunders is a Tennessee-based performance artist, poet, and illustrator who has drawn at least one self-portrait every day since March 30, 1995. As of now, he has over 8,700 self-portraits, collected in stacks of hardbound sketchbooks.

As an experiment, for 50 days straight Saunders took a different drug every day before doing his self-portrait. All of the drugs were free, either given to him by junkie neighbours in his rundown, $18-a-month apartment and doctors who see his art and assume he’s psychotic – he can’t decide if he thinks he is or not – or administered to him during brief mental hospital visits. The frequent drug use gave him mild brain damage that was thankfully repairable, and he’s still adding to the collection, albeit with more time in between.

The drawings are personal, varied, and reflect the experience of the intoxicants they’re associated with. Portraits on weed, salvia, and butane honey oil are whimsical, with an almost child-like use of primary colours. More frequently, they reflect anxiety, darkness, and a fracture of self-identity.

In a profile on The Guardian, Saunders says that he hates that people only know him for the drug portraits, so if you like these, consider checking out more of his work on his personal website.
 

Acid

1
 

Ritalin (doseage unknown-snorted)

2
 

Marijuana (Kine bud)

3
 

1 Glass of Pruno

4
 

4mg Risperdal

5
 

250mg Soma

6
 

Marijuana (G13)

7
 

Morphine IV (dosage unknown)

8
 

Psilocybin Mushrooms (2 caps onset)

9
 

2mg Nicotine Gum

10
 

Nitrous Oxide

11
 

Opium

12
 

PCP

13
 

5mg Percocet

14
 

Salvia Divinorum

15
 

100mg Seroquel

16
 

250mg Soma

17
 

100mg Tramadol

18
 

100mg Trazadone

19
 

20mg Valium

20
 

2mg Xanax

21
 

50mg Zoloft

22
 

10mg Zyprexa

23
 

Marijuana Resin

24
 

10mg Loritab

25
 

300mg Lithium

26
 

Huffing Gas

27
 

5mg hydrocodone/ 7.5mg Oxycodone/ 3mg Xanax

28
 

10mg adderall

29
 

1 sm Glass of Absinth

30
 

10mg Ambien

31
 

1 “Bump” of Crystalmeth

32
 

DMT

33