Life Drawing Class
New term today for life drawing classes – very bad timing on my part to start Part 4 Drawing Figures, just as the summer holidays began, hopefully, though I can get a few classes in before the end of this section.
A gentle start with Sally our model, being very patient with the 2 minute poses, which actually went on for 5-7 minutes!
Establishing weight and stance in the pose. The standing ones fairly successful but the seated pose is rather shortened in the torso – never mind, we’ve only just started!
Again, trying to establish the weight of the figure together with the gesture of the pose. Sally was lounging on a chair propped on cushions with her head resting against the wall – unfortunately, was not able to convey this very well, she appears a little uncomfortable?
Tutor decided to ask Sally to wear her black boots for added interest. Model was propped up on cushions again but this time with her shoulders and elbows taking the strain. Tried to note the joints in the knees, the weight in the elbows and the hunch of the shoulders. The muscles in the thigh were visible pushing the flesh beneath into the floor.
A tricky and compact seated pose this time. Instead of attempting an initial line drawing, I decided to cover the space with a layer of charcoal and then sculpt out the lighter shapes. This method helped me visualise the pose on the paper without confusing lines. Working in this way, I could strengthen the darks and lighten the lights easily and the image was drawn out of the charcoal background. The putty rubber became a little ineffective to bring out the real highlights, so a plastic, harder eraser was also used and this removed more of the charcoal. I was pleased with this as I have also managed to convey the weight of the chin on Sally’s hand, and created a more complete image in a fairly short time.
This was supposed to be a longer pose of about 45 minutes, unfortunately, it was difficult to set up as the model had had some back problems. We therefore had a 30 minute pose in the end. I think this encouraged me to work quickly and expressively with the pen to get the basic form down on the paper. Accuracy and form were eventually gained by going round and up and down the figure repeatedly. I then strengthened the tones, lines and shapes with conte stick. This was interesting as the liner pen initially seemed very dominant, but once a heavier, more solid medium was added, it actually gave the finished result a more delicate line, which was almost lost in the end. The model’s left arm leaves a little to be desired, but in general this was enjoyable and freeing to do after concentrating so hard earlier.
This was a gentle re-introduction to class, as we normally produce many more sketches – I’m sure we won’t be treated so leniantly in two weeks time!