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.

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Double Trouble

One of our veteran models arranged for a second model to be present at a recent Fredericksburg Figure Drawing session. For most of the attending artists it was their first time drawing multiple figures. Impressively no one appeared to be the least bit intimidated. The majority did solid drawings that included both figures.

Two Models, oil pastel on toned paper, 12" X 14", 2016

I have only vague memories of my early attempts at two models but clearly recall they did not go well. For the longest time I was convinced that one figure at a time was quite enough. It took the jolt of three models to shake me from this complacancy (see September 28, 2013 post).

On the technical side having two bodies occupying the stage is a good exercise in spacial relationships. When it is one of each sex there is the added interest of the soft curves of the female form contrasting with the more angular shapes of the male figure. All this before we even address the social and psychological ramifications multiple figures present. Oh my goodness.


Sunday, January 15, 2017

The Creative Spirit

I would say that all the art and inventions of humankind are products of a creative spirit. As a painter I have long been aware of this powerful force and have discussed it multiple times in this blog. A creative fever recently caught me in a realm unrelated to painting or drawing. It came on unexpectedly and involved sticks - lots and lots of sticks.

Abstract, Mulberry branches and sisal twine, 79" X 107" X 52", 2016

Trimming trees this fall in my small urban back yard I found myself in possession of a plethora of branches and twigs. In the past I have constructed small wattle accent fences with this harvest but somehow this years abundance called for more. What transpired was an enjoyable two week period that resulted in three sculptures. The airy abstract above was the first and my favorite of the group. The urge to work with sticks passed as quickly as it had come. Now it is up to mother nature to reclaim my inventions.


Saturday, January 7, 2017

Painters High

Runners high - that feeling of euphoria long distance runners get during and after a run. The jury is still out regarding its actual cause but as a former runner I can attest to its existence. With the winter blues stalking me I have become acutely aware that painting and drawing produce a similar effect. Lets call it a "painters high" (drawers high doesn't sound right). Furthermore, working from the live figure produces the most potent and longest lasting high.

Female Nude, oil on linen, 6" X 6", 2017

I have long referred to drawing and painting as "my therapy". I'm not imagining things. There is an entire field of medicine devoted to art as a healing tool. One can obtain a masters degree in art therapy. There is even an American Art Therapy Association. The simple act of putting pencil to paper or paint to canvas is unquestionably good for ones body and soul.