Art: Live Figure Drawing 1 of 4


Figure Drawing 20190711 02

“Snoozing Nude w/ Tattoos”

Last week I took my first ever Live Figure Drawing class. Well, it wasn’t so much a class as a session. The model was there, artists were there, and we sketched away without instruction.

Going into this experience at the Mansfield Art Center, I had somewhat of an idea of what to expect. A nude person. Charcoal. Fast sketches.

Beforehand, I asked for input & tips from others who had either taken a live drawing class or modeled for one. Some quoted tidbits:

  • “I love doing live figure drawing!! My advice is to just let go. They change up the times for each pose. Sometimes you might only get 1 minute to sketch. Sometimes 20. It’s incredible brain training.” ~Andrea Wittmer
  • “Naked people make me nervous. Probably post-tramatic-commune-living-disorder.” ~Tim Gorka
  • “Loosen up with quick 20 second sketches done with something unerasable like a Sharpie, go for capturing gesture with long lines first, then horizontal lines for shoulders and hips (capture how the angles look, the way the weight is carried) avoid a quest for likeness perfection in the beginning. As you get more comfortable with the process and executing the basics quickly you can build on more detail as time allows. Life drawing was my favorite in art school.” ~Rhiann Wynn-Nolet
  • “I modeled for 10 plus years and rather enjoyed it. I was always amazed at what was created.” ~Bryan Gladden
  • “Life drawing really helped me in understanding anatomy. Body parts are larger than I thought. Like heads, the shoulders, torso, feet. And men are more challenging. As for the nudity, the first time was a little adjustment, but then it was no biggie. I’d try charcoals to start with because they can be wonderfully goof-proof and make great shadows. And have fun! Now I want to go.” ~Anniston Jory

So the model posed. I sketched. The 2 hours went by quickly. I ended up with maybe 7 sheets of varying sized paper with 1 – 12 figures slapped all over them.

Figure Drawing 20190711 08

“The Elbows Have It”

Afterwords, a few of us did an informal show-and-tell of what we created. The model peeked over our shoulders. For one piece, I added green & blue pastel to match her real-life hair. She loved that one.

I signed it, snapped the pic below, and gave it to her. It was the first time she’d ever received one of the sketches from any of her modeling.

Life Figure Gift

“Chilly Nude”

Once home, I looked back through my work from the evening. Some parts of some sketches were pretty okay for an initial attempt. Other parts were downright horrible, off, screaming with their bad proportions, lack of model likeness, room for improvement. But that’s why I need the sessions.

As I do, I started thinking: “Hmmm… what if I push these ‘throwaway’ sketches a bit further? Develop them into finished pieces? Add to the composition with acrylic?”

So that’s what I did. I further challenged myself to make these pieces feel current but also like they could’ve been created in the 1960’s or 100 years ago. Kind of a non-vintage vintage feel. For my palette, I chose muted colors that would help convey this.

Three of these reworkings are now signed & framed.

Figure Drawing 20190711 03

“The Body Is A Boat”

This was session 1 of 4. I’m hoping to see personal progress by the end. After each session, I’m gonna work at least one of the sketches into a “finished” piece.

And, I reckon, soon I’ll be able to offer input/tips for another artist giving Live Figure Drawing a shot for the first time. My first tip: just go for it.

 

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Art: Blank Encyclopedias


Blank Encyclopedias - Blank

This poor, neglected site. I tell ya what.

I’ve had a lot going on. Been making tons of art, writing & submitting too much (apparently) unpublishable poetry. Basically I’ve been enjoying an extended period of experimental creation. Plus my partner & I are opening a store. <— [Much more to come on that last one later.]

I think we all make this plans, resolutions-of-sorts. Like, I’m gonna do this, commit to this, and this time I’m gonna follow through on every bit of it. And, well, occasionally that works out.

So one of those things I’m gonna do, is post my art more regularly. I mean, I make plenty of it. Might as well chronicle, throw it out there, get my creations seen by a few eyes other than my own.  It feels like maybe I’ve made this plan before…?

Well, I’m making good on it in this very moment anyway.

Blank Encyclopedias - A-Z

This series is titled Blank Encyclopedias.

The concept is that they’re a set of encyclopedias, templates, that need to be filled. Writing, sketching, collage, etc. Stick to entries that begin with the letter on the cover? Or select one based on the first initial of your name and just go hog-wild with the content. Whatever. They’re blank until someone fills them.

The artwork is acrylic on canvas-covered blank journals/sketchbooks with unlined paper.

Process-wise, I gave myself permission to just go freeform with the imagery, no planning. This is me playing with hand lettering & typography, directly applying stark-white acrylic to the black covers, making bold marks. I then added neon washes for color.

I decided to make these Blank Encyclopedias 2-sided. So if the A is flipped over on a short edge, the Z is upright. The same with the B and Y. And so on. [I’ve filled a few of my personal journals like this: writing on only one side of the page, flipping the journal over & then writing on the back.]

Yes, these are for sale. Once 7 are paid for, my costs will be covered.
Art sure ain’t gonna make me rich. Yes, I’ll ship them to your front door.

Small Blank Encyclopedia – 4″ x 6″ – $10
Large Blank Encyclopedia – 5.5″ x 8.5″ – $15

I’m thinking these might be perfect for jotting down this plans. Shoot, some those might even come to pass.

 

Poetry – Recent Publications


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Rusty Manhole Cover at a Nearby College

I won’t even tell you how many rejections I’ve received for my poetry.
But, see, I keep writing, learning & submitting.

Every now & then a lit journal sees what I think I see in my poems.
A couple of my accepted pieces have gone live in the last month.
[There’s even an audio version of me reading one.]

Check ’em out:

Graveyard Shifted No 20190108 published in River, River

Brown Silk published in Toe Good

& should you be so inclined, you can pick up a print copy of Flying South #4
which includes my poem, Grandmama’s Ghost Stories.

I’ve been a little resistant to putting pieces on here. That counts as “publication” to some journals, so I can’t submit them. But I’ve got a lot of backlogged pieces. I’m ever-so-slowly leaning towards posting some poems right here on my own site.

I’d love to check out your poetry, too. Got a link? Drop it in the comments.

 

 

Awe Movement Quiz No 20190525


The awe of:
1. Who each of us is or may be
2. What any material can do
3. When life makes sense
4. Where balance collides w/ itself
5. Why sound & color ignite
6. How change even happens
7. If curiosity

Awe Movement boundless expands.
We question, imagine, unravel.
We learn love by trying.

Art. Music. Writing.
Wandering, doing, being.
Sift, sort, combine.

Q1: What is pure & true if not awe?
Q2: Is stillness also movement?
Q3: Have you ever wondered?

We Stand With Standing Rock


So, I performed some poetry etc in support of Standing Rock.
I happened to be wearing a bird mask for part of it.

#waterislife #allthesparrowsare1

Voices from the Borderlands

15420897_10154356588862830_684050273966762102_nIn late July, the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe filed a lawsuit against the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers stating their concern that a pipeline slated to be built encroached upon ancestral lands.


It’s a five dollar donation to get in the doors of the Standing Rock Solidarity Benefit show, to be enveloped in the warmth, the glow, the murmur of conversations cut frequently by loud laughter. It looks like someone’s family reunion with folding chairs and cheap plastic table cloths, a buffet set-up with six donated Two Cousin’s Gut Buster pizzas and cheap booze. As the place slowly fills with people, the room becomes a beacon in the cold night, a bright light in a row of dim buildings, a convention of friends new and old, setting the stage for solidarity.
September 4th, Dakota Access begins clearing ground for the pipeline, bulldozing over sacred sites and burials. Protesters are attacked…

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