Thursday, December 05, 2013

WARNING - Nude Drawings

One of the requirements in art school is attendance at life drawing classes. It's a discipline of the ages and practiced by the masters for hundreds of years. Throughout my career, I've joined artists groups whenever available that offer life drawing. It's sound practice to maintain drawing skills. Some of these classes have been arranged by a group of artists chipping in for a model and some are hosted by art centers/organizations. All are's the nature of the study.
During my time in California, artist's models formed a union and received a decent union wage. Most are well paid for an unusual task. Sometimes we can talk family members and friends into modeling for us. I tie old reins around a doorknob and ask Michael to lean back and pose extreme jockey hands. Make 'em white knuckled and gnarly, please. In fact, almost all of the hands in my racing paintings are his.
To be an artist's model, one must sit still for long periods of time while vulnerably naked. We do our best to keep them comfortably warm and not insist on any poses that would cause cramping.
The model above is holding a doll that had been modified into a creepy "Chucky" character. Another artist created this cottage industry of doll customization to make extra money. It was Halloween and an absolute hoot to pose the female model with the demon doll. When creatives get together, imaginations run rampant!
The models will often fall asleep as the one above. Or they have an itch and never put their hands back into the same position. Or they put themselves into an uncomfortable pose and fidget. Most of us do our best to remain patient and professional, after all, it's not an easy job.
Some models are innovative and will show up in costume. Some have a sense of humor that we artists thrive on. Yes, we do have our favorites. One time a very plump girl posed with a bridal veil and beautiful white silk gloves up to her elbows and of course, nothing else. Some models are naturally graceful and slip into elegant poses. The model above was eight months pregnant and announced that this was her last gig until the baby was born. It was a beautiful and sensual session.
There are some instances where an artist won't find a model inspiring. No one's fault, just one of those vague energy things. Then we turn to studying body parts, as above.

It's a classic,

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