It’s been almost two months since I did any life drawing – that is if you discount drawing animals on the Etosha Saltpan. It is also about the same time since I did any pastel work. So I went down to the Liver Sketching Club and eased myself in between the easels, without standing on too many toes, and had a go yesterday. Here is the result. I did go in with a game plan of working off a mix of background colours, but could have thought the scheme through a bit better in relation to the selection of colours. Though I do always take a couple of different coloured papers, normally a cool and warm and dark and light and select one depending on the mood and pose at the time, so there are always many options which would need to be considered beforehand.
Anyway, it’s just a piece of paper and it got me up and running again.
I had a great photo of my wife in Simons Town on our hotel balcony looking out over the bay but I lost the memory card and many other photos along with it. I thought I might have a go at recreating the image but sadly failed with this wooden affair. The point was the light falling on the subject, lighting up the figure against the blue of the sea, sky and hills. Still, it was a bit of practice.
A little more extensive use of charcoal with the pastel though still not getting the grittiness or directness I am after.
In the one above I used even more charcoal, though probably too much and not to its greatest effect.
And finally a portrait of the child of a child of the sixties, but with the lighting so poor in the studio the features are flattened by the glaring light. Another of life’s little challenges, I expect some of you have shared.
I went to Chester the other week primarily to see a contemporary watercolour exhibition, but the person I was with wanted to visit a sculpture exhibition in the cathedral which contained a work by the brother of someone we paint with in a life group. In fact they were dismantling the exhibition when we arrived – I didnt even know it was running – but there were still a good number of exhibits on show by many world class sculptors. Some of the work was displayed in the cathedral grounds and as we were walking through in the sunshine, there were people sitting in the sun, surrounded by the great pillars and walls of the building, taking a lunchtime break. I thought I might paint something from a couple of the pictures I took.
The watercolour painting was also quite interesting, featuring some local artists, two of whom I knew – and the day was glorious for a walk around Chester.
This is a painting of a guy I was at art college with and who occasionally models. He stepped in last week when the original model pulled out. I was pleased with the face as it captured him really well, the trouble is with the hands, which I could have tidied up later, but as I gave him the painting at the end of the session, it’s too late.