ROMULUS — The vivid colored pencils on Hari Jiwan Kaur Khalsa’s art table stand out against the pristine whiteness of the snow outside as well as the pale decor inside her studio.
Khalsa, dressed in white from her socks to the turban wrapped around her dark hair, leans over the table, carefully copies the details from a small pencil and pastel drawing on to a large sheet of watercolor paper.
Khalsa, 48, searches for the essence of the subjects she draws. Her soul portraits — illustrations of her impressions of people and the divine messages meant for them — have pushed the former commercial artist in a way she never thought possible.
“The design is as if it’s already been figured out in advance,” she said. “I’m just transcribing it. I don’t think I could have thought this up if I’d tried.”
For Khalsa, the soul portraits are a way to help individuals get a better sense of self and work through a variety of personal issues.
A detail of Hari Jiwan Kaur Khalsa’s soul, as drawn by herself.
Now that sounds like a good racket to get into. Nobody can complain that their “soul” portrait doesn’t look like them. And if it looks like light with bright colors who is going to say, “Sorry I don’t quite think that is my soul.” I wonder if she does group soul portraits. Judging by her self-soul-portrait I don’t think she suffers from low self-esteem.