The next step

I have worked from the live nude periodically since the early 1970's. This blog starts in my second year of working almost exclusively from the figure.

In the fall of 2015 I reintroduced still lifes and an occasional cityscape into my painting repertoire. Rather than abandon this figure blog or start a new one I decided to just add them to the conservation.

All drawings and paintings posted on this blog were done entirely from the live model.

Thursday, September 14, 2017


From April through early August of this year I was on what could best be described as a figure drawing jag. Then, as high summer took hold, garden sunflowers began to bloom setting off a floral painting spree. I approached both these subjects with a good deal of fervor but inevitably over indulged. A more moderate diet might be in order for the fall.

Female Nude, oil pastel on toned paper,
9" X 9", 2017

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Six By Six

A local art center has an annual show titled "Six By Six". No entry can exceed six inches in any dimension, including the frame. Viewing last years exhibition I decided to try my hand at the format. I have done plenty of small scale work over the years but not with the figure and not in a square. These limitations turned out to be more challenging than I had expected. (For more examples see 1/7/17 and 2/24/17 posts).

Male Nude Study, oil on panel mounted canvas,
5 3/8" X 5 3/8", 2017

Friday, August 25, 2017

The Model

Working from a live model there is no predicting if your efforts will be successful - there are simply too many variables involved in the process. However, ones chances of a good outcome are greatly enhanced when the model displays a level of proficiency that challenges your own.

Female Nude, oil pastel, 13" X 9", 2017

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Year Four

August 9th marked the fourth anniversary of this blog. Counting the two years I kept a private art diary that totals six years of introspection regarding the figure. From the beginning, the point was to verbalize my working methods and intentions with the hope of making at least some incremental progress.

Reclining Nude, oil pastel, 9" X 11", 2014

For the last year or so my desire to scrutinize the intricacies of live figurative work has been waining. I'm more interested in just looking and reacting. It follows that the content of this blog will evolve to reflect this new reality.

Friday, August 4, 2017

Thirty Minutes

A large percentage of the drawings appearing on this blog are from the local figure drawing group I have attended for the last seven years. Each session includes some warm ups followed by progressively longer poses with thirty minutes being the longest. Undoubtedly, some attendees would prefer more extended poses while others find fifteen minutes sufficient. A half hour has proven a good compromise.

Thirty Minute Standing Nude,
oil pastel on toned paper,
9 1/2" X 5", 2012

A thirty minute time limit forces one to work deliberately and with an appropriate sense of urgency. It is important to reinforce this working cadence. One can easily fall into bad habits given too much time.

Friday, July 21, 2017

The Pose

My favorite poses are usually the simplest ones. An extended arm and subtle twist - what more could an artist want.

Female Nude, oil pastel on toned paper
11" X 9", 2017

Monday, July 10, 2017


This figure study has avoided my discard pile multiple times. I like the strong shadow. But it is the bent finger of the upper hand that keeps it in my collection. I had a long comfortable working relationship with the model. She was a professional. Starting the drawing I could be confident of her being aware of and holding this subtle nuance.

Nude Withe Shadow, oil pastel on toned paper, 9" X 9", 2012