Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Drawing from Life

Meet one of my all time favorite models. This gentleman drives down from southwest Washington state over an hour to pose for us. Well, of course we pay him but he doesn't really make much when you take into account the gas money and probably a meal. What makes him my favorite is that through much experience he really knows how to model. So many people think that it can't be that hard, just hold still. Set your timer for three minutes and hold a pose. Unless you are laying on your bed, it isn't always easy. Now imagine holding a pose for 45 minutes, without a break!
Of course, there is more to modeling than holding still. This man knows how to move gracefully and seems to instinctively understand how to make even a simple pose interesting to the artists. The pose above was a 15 minute pose (charcoal on newsprint), as you can tell, there is not much detail or muscle structure. I was really focusing on getting the gesture. I knew this model was going to be here that day so I brought along my nice charcoal drawing paper and my good charcoal as well and got a nice drawing in on the final pose, which was 45 minutes.
I think I have mentioned it before but one of the things I miss the most about school (besides my teachers and fellow students of course) is the access to frequent live model sessions. Three hours, two times a month is just not enough!
I am still working bit by bit on the still life paintings. I will show those when there is enough progress to show. It has been going a bit slower lately as I have had to turn my attention to a few life matters.
I am a couple days late with this post as Sunday was filled with life drawing and then a cast party for a readers theater group that my husband has become involved with. Yesterday I went north to Astoria to stock up the pantry. We have a snowstorm bearing down upon us. They are calling for 1-2" here on the beach (needless to say, sea level), and about 18" on all the passes that we would have to cross to leave the coast. We should be snug and warm. I am hoping I will be able to get some pictures of the snow on the beach.
Off to catch up on reading some of the wonderful blogs on my list!


Anonymous said...

What a dedicated model! And so good that you still have some access to life drawing. the online life drawing was interesting, but I wonder about the sense of dimension.

R. Delight said...

Hi Evelyn, I have the same concern about the poses from the internet as you do. I only use them for quick 1-2 minute gesture sketches to get the idea of the gesture. I think that dimension doesn't count as much under those circumstances. However, there is no substitute for a live model. If you get a chance, read Karen Martin Sampson's recent post on the dilemma. I have to agree with her 100%! As a group, we pay a model $20 an hour. I mentioned a few of the drawbacks to working in a group but left some out as it would sound too much like a rant! I just spent 20 minutes writing on this very topic in my 750words.com journal. A link to Karen's blog is in my Artists Who Inspire list. That said, I am grateful indeed I have some reasonable access to a live model!

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