What Next?

January 27, 2010

In need of a break from thinking about what to paint, I instead attended an uninstructed figure study session at the Art Students League on Saturday afternoon. Our model held the same pose for three hours, including breaks of course! Although it took me about 15 minutes to find a good viewpoint in the crowded studio, it was refreshing to be surrounded by artists instead of painting alone in my apartment or at a plein-air location. It felt good to “catch a pose” without thinking too much, but the bad news is I have run out of canvases.

Saturday’s model was straightforward to paint. She held her position well, her features were not too angular and her pose was not overly dramatic. My previous attempt at capturing a nude model’s pose occurred in Michelle Torrez’s class last spring. Although daunting initially, I grew to love the exercise of capturing the gestures of models who held poses ranging from 3 to 10 minutes, or a final long pose lasting 20 minutes.

I tried to remember Michelle’s advice on mixing paints to create accurate skin colors. Although my accuracy in rendering her skin tones is questionable, my value contrasts are not. Considering this was my first attempt at a nude in almost a year it is a success!

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1 Response to “What Next?”


  1. 1 Andrea @ Fork Fingers Chopsticks February 1, 2010 at 1:55 pm

    I picked a watercolor class for my first-ever art course. In this beginning class I expected to paint still life’s like fruit bowls and flowers. Much to my surprise, in my very first class I was painting nudes and doing skin tones. I didn’t even know how to hold or use the brush. The class was a lot of fun but in the end I decided my tastes favor acrylics/oils and more abstract work. So I think your experience (and end result) can be considered superior!


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