There were no art classes – because of the holiday – for over a week. For some unexplained reason I began to wonder why I was taking drawing classes. Previous to retirement the only “extra-curricular” activities I did had a purpose – professional enrichment, teaching others, meeting requirements etc. I have no desire (we won’t talk about talent) to exhibit or sell nude drawings . . . For some reason, simply seeking personal enjoyment seemed strange at best and hollow at worst.
I’m still not sure why my disquiet and only share it wondering if you, too, have questioned just doing something simply for self-enjoyment?
* * *
This model was known for his muscular, regal bearing. He has lost weight and thee is a vulnerability that wasn’t apparent before.
20 Minute sketch, conte crayon
10 minute sketch, charcoal
20 minutes sketch, charcoal
As a psychotherapist I knew that one of the biggest pitfalls of all relationships* was “seeing” others through the clouded lens of our own eyes. We humans tend to think everyone feels as we do and should understand what we know. It’s hard to take someone else’s position because we live in the bubble of our unique experiences and interpretations. In psychological terms it’s called projection. I was surprised to see this phenomena in artwork.
During the breaks in life drawing I noticed that many (not all) drew the model in “their own image”: Short students tended to draw the models legs too short; stocky students drew her a bit too stocky and; muscular students created muscular images.
Although all art, whether dancing, singing, painting etc. is ultimately a “projection” of the artist I’m wondering if what sets apart renowned artists from amateurs is a true reflection of the artist rather than an “accurate” rendition of the subject?
Charcoal, 20 minute sketch
Conte Crayon, 20 minute sketch
Each sketch, 20 minutes
To read about the pitfalls of relationships click here:
Mervin the Mole Rat sez: “Her art is a projection of wishful thinking . . .”
Tone on tone – My favorite
She’s quite possibly tone deaf
This is the best of the lot. What? You didn’t think I’d post my sketches that look like they were drawn by a monkey?
I’ve figured out (pun intended) two things:
- I prefer drawing women or men with a bit of flesh on the bone. There are more curves and lumps which make it more fun to draw. Most of the models, like the one today, have beautiful “hard bodies”.
- Everything I do lately points to my limited concentration span. While others bemoan not having enough time to finish drawing during the 40 minute poses (two – 20 minutes with a break in-between for the model. Try sitting perfectly still for 20 minutes) I have done two or three drawings. I would prefer to think it’s not concentration span but it’s because I don’t particularly like “realism” and am not interested in getting an exact likeness . . .
“Ouch. We monkeys have talent, not to mention feelings. . . “
Last day of life drawing for this semester. I’ve missed several classes, something I would have been loathe to do in my high school and college years when I never ditched nor dropped a class.
I distinctly remember the first time I stopped attending a class simply because I no longer enjoyed it. Wish I could say it was a daring and rebellious move . . . it was a community college class that I was taking just for enjoyment. I was in my 40’s and high time for a bit of rebellion . . . don’t you think?
But I digress . . . here’s the best of the last sketches . . . in my opinion
Starting with my favorite
Caught the likeness of both his front and his back . . .
All these sketches were 20 minutes or less. I’ve discovered that my attention span is smack dab in the national average of 20 minutes. Ah . . . the things you learn in drawing class.
First week of art classes. It’s amazing how “rusty” I felt after just 4 weeks of not drawing. The model had not ONE ounce of fat anywhere on his body.
Charcoal, warm-up sketches
I decided to push myself a bit and drew a few quickies using pen & ink. Ink is a bit intimidating since I can’t ERASE.
Pen & Ink sketch
Pen & Ink Sketch
I drew him to look like an old man! . . . in my defense his head was shaved . . .
Not only didn’t the model have an ounce of fat anywhere on his body he didn’t have an ounce of hair anywhere . . . at least not in the places I saw . . .
If you are an art buff or interested in the psychology of nudes read this article Why The Nude Still Shocks. Not only is it interesting it underscores my past reluctance to put up the sketches of men as opposed to women. (see Equal Opportunity Nudes)
The model this week was male but he was wearing this warrior “get-up” that the men in the class seemed to enjoy drawing , . . must be a testosterone “thing”. I say “TAKE IT OFF!”
Ten days into walking like a drunken sailor without the drink or the sailing. My husband drove me to art class. It was nice to get out of the house. The vertigo is much better but I’m still a bit wobbly.
At first, looking back and forth from the model to the drawing pad was a bit disorienting and I was very tired after class – probably because my brain was working hard to compensate.
The focus for this session was using brown wrapping paper, black and white charcoal.
“Wobbly is the least of her worries . . . She’s always been wonky & wacky . . . “
The general consensus among my women art classmates is they prefer drawing female curves rather than male muscles. Next week I’ll ask the men. One of the women said her husband was VERY upset she would take a class where the focus was staring at nude men.
For these sketches I threw muscles to the wind and just drew. I took a few liberties (like cutting off the models head because he was wearing a ridiculous helmet which I refused to draw and beefing him up a bit to match my own fantasies . . .)
I’m only sharing the back views I drew . . . don’t want to upset any of YOU that I’ve been staring at full frontal nude men . . .
15 minute pose, charcoal sketch
5 minute pose, charcoal sketch
20 minute pose, charcoal sketch
Did quick sketches with colored pencils in class.
I ate my model . . . ouch!
Hot off the drawing board – from today’s art class.