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Archive for the ‘Life drawing’ Category

FaceHand
When we have a model in drawing class, I sometimes can’t resist and I join in for a quick study. I love drawing hands.
Stabilo Aquarellable pencil on Gloss paper.
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14OneMinutes copyWhen we have a model, the poses range from twenty minutes to one-minutes.  I like to start the class with a couple of fives and only then go into the fast and furious ones.  One-minute poses are exhilarating and also terrifying.  Hence. the fivers at the start.

We’ll have a set of six one-minute poses.  I encourage my students to draw all six on the same page, allowing the figures to overlap.  This creates a visual intensity and adds the element of time, not only in creating the illusion of motion, but in the urgency of the crowded lines themselves.

13MarchMultiStephI draw along—hey, it only takes six minutes to do six poses.  Students can then see what my page looks like, in all its raggedy incompletion.  While the next, longer pose is in session, I’ll work some atmospheric markmaking around the figures, tying them together and at the same time making them emerge out of and vanish into the invented darkness.  The scribbly anatomy studies then hang together as an image.

For studies like this I like to work with Stabilo on gloss paper.  Gloss paper has no texture and therefore no pressure is required.  Then, for the second stage of adding the dark “background,” the Stabilo, being water-soluble, allows for all sorts of smudging and atmospheric effects.

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14EACshowFeet2

This very fine exhibit opened a few days ago and will be up til Feb 16.  Come in whatever you can throw on to keep warm or slip into your most retro patent leather boots, but do hoof it over to the Evanston Art Center to catch this show.

14EACshow114EACshow214EACshow314EACshow5

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13AnatomyYesterday was the ninth of twelve classes in this fall term.  We had been working on all sorts of topics:  drapery, still life, shading, three-dimensionality, hands, faces, contrapposto, composition, upside-down drawing, the works.  All difficult issues.  Why not add more difficulty, I thought, and give them the difficulty of choosing what to work from.  I set up a still life and brought in images of faces & hands to struggle with.  And then one more thing:  pages from Barcsay’s anatomy book.  To my surprise, most of the class went for the challenges of anatomy.  It’s the driest of topics, but there they were, eagerly gathering around the table where the xerox copies of the muscles and bones were spread out.

You get a work out when you try to draw all these muscles in their right place. It’s an accomplishment in itself and a valuable exercise that helps you draw more loosely and with more confidence when you face the live mode.

When the anatomical studies are placed on the same page, crammed together and made to partially overlap, the result is greater than the sum of its parts.  The page (above, by Gaby Edgerton) is clearly about studying anatomy, but the rhythm created by these dense forms nudges the composition out of mere academia and into the category “art.”

13BarcsayMusclesJenö Barcsay’s (1900-1988) anatomy book has been around for about forty years.  I like to use it in class, because the illustrations lack flair and heroism.  It’s actually a little boring (just the facts, ma’m)   and that spurs a more advanced student on to invent a way of drawing and a way of putting the body parts on the page that perks us up because it feels a lot like art.  Killing two birds with one femur.

(There’s some glare on the photo of Gaby’s drawing because I use a little instant camera in a room with rows of ceiling lights.)

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13StudioGallKaren

Now it’s my drawing students’ turn in the Studio Gallery.  There are thirty-three drawings on exhibit, grouped by artist.  The work stretches over a two year period. You’ll see a variety of styles, in both still life and head/figure studies. 

13StudioGalMaggyDrawing is an intimate medium. You can’t look at a drawing from across the room.  You have to get up close and personal.  This is the medium that gives you the feeling that you are entering another mind as it tries to grasp the complexities of perception. Drawing is closest to my heart.

13StudioGalLinneThanks to Cynthia Bold, Linné Dosé, Gabrielle Edgerton, Karen Gerrard, Ale Podestá, and Maggy Shell for submitting your work.  Thank you, Ale, for helping me with hanging the show and applying your good eye.

13StudioGallAleThe work is for sale, at negotiable prices.  The show closes Oct 27. 

13StudioGalGabyDrawings are hard to document by camera.  You’ll just have to come in and see.  Here’s the notice from the Evanston Art Center web site:

http://www.evanstonartcenter.org/exhibitions/sketches-studies-studio-gallery

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130516LifeStudiesKEH3BlogThese are two-minute poses. Between poses, there’s no time to switch to another page.  All six poses are scribbled on the same paper. I encourage my students to let the figures overlap because overlapping takes us away from the clarity of illustration and into greater tension and dynamic.

Above, the page I did in class.  Below, the page as I developed it later in my studio.  I used the Stabilo-All-Aquarellable pencil on gloss paper, 11 x 17.

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130516Classroom1blog

When we have a model in class, I sometimes draw along.  These are ten-minute poses.  I worked with the Stabilo-All-Aquarellable pencil on gloss paper. Height of drawings, 11”.

130516Classroom2blog

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