The body is a landscape of hills and valleys in drawing terms and the more wrinkles and moles there are the better. The artist is eager and greedy to convert them into dots and splashes to enliven and energise their work. I was working with a male life model this week and I have to say he is undeniably skinny; every rib and sinew shows through as clear as a bell. Perfect for some studies but I have to admit an obese male life model would be good to draw also but have yet to find one. Copious folds and acres of flesh, normally shunned and eschewed by society and the media, would be a bonus in life drawing terms. Male or female. So if any life model is reading this, take note; you are not required to follow any diet. Ample is good, folds are visually interesting.
What medium have I been using recently? Twig and ink. I was out picking up wind blown twigs off the ground in our garden after a post Christmas gale had blown them off, neatly placing them on the bonfire ready for a Spring clean blaze,when I decided they would make ideal drawing implements. I am not sure what sort of tree it is but it’s huge, possibly a weeping rowan, and the twigs are smooth and springy. I tweaked them with my trusty secateurs into a nice angled point and quickly made a couple of dozen to share with students. They are particularly good to draw with because of their springiness, allowing a few unexpected marks to appear, and I do like the unexpected in my drawing.
Incidentally I am about to take new images of life drawing sketch books so watch this space as these will be uploaded shortly to bring colour and illustration to my blog.