Saturday, February 3, 2018


2/1/18 15-min. pose
A couple weeks ago I talked about our Gage model Shauna and how her energy expressed through creative, spontaneous poses kept me engaged, which made it easier for me to push through my rustiness.

Last Thursday my experience was just the opposite. Our model (I didn’t learn his name) held poses well, so I can’t complain about that. But something about him seemed lethargic and lacking in energy. Maybe he sensed that we weren’t engaged (one artist seemed distracted; several walked in late.) Maybe he was just tired. I’m certainly not blaming him for my drawing quality (or lack thereof), but instead of feeling energy being given to me (as in the case of Shauna), it seemed like my energy was fading away. Or maybe I was just tired, too.

I thought again about Peter Steinhart’s book, Undressed Art – Why We Draw, in which he talks about this unspoken exchange that occurs in life-drawing sessions. As you know, I also enjoy sketching strangers in public places who are (I assume) not aware that I am drawing them. In those cases, the communication between us is completely one-sided – I take what I can from them, and they don’t notice. Those “models” are more like fruit or other still lives (well, other than the fact that they move!) Drawing a paid model is very different because he or she has willingly come to pose for us, and the communication goes both ways. Even when the communication is not the kind I prefer (like last Thursday), I am fascinated by this process. 

And no matter who the model is, life drawing at Gage is one of my favorite ways to spend a cold and rainy winter afternoon.

2/1/18 2-min. poses

2/1/18 2-minute poses

2/1/18 5-min. poses

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