In early December, I was invited by my good friend and fellow artist, Maria Do Rosario Tavares (Miza to me) to give a painting demonstration for a group she is working with in Chester. The subject, ‘life painting’ – one of my favourites. It was only a two hour session, but a very good one. The group and the model were lovely.
To warm up I made this rapid watercolour/gouache of David, the model.
Those who have followed my blog, probably equate me with hummingbird images, which of course is right:) However, today I thought I would share with you just a tiny fraction of the nudes i have painted in the last few years.
Twenty minute – full sheet watercolour and felt tip pen study
I love short poses – preferably five to 20 minutes max. This enables me to capture the energy and movement of my subject….
five minute watercolour study
I was fortunate to go to art school at the beginning of the sixties. For the first year, we made charcoal drawings of nudes, almost exclusively. I quickly learned what an important foundation block the observation of the human form is.
Twenty minute watercolour study…(all the white is dry white paper)
In the late sixties, it was said that the ‘busts were thrown out of the studio windows’ and were replaced with a less formal mode of study. Personally, I feel that if you have a strong foundation block – it frees an artist to explore with more self confidence….much as I believe, that ‘self discipline equals freedom’
Ten minute study using one of my favourite models
Along with nude models we also worked with ‘costume models’ learning how to capture the human form beneath the drapes of fabric – again honing observational skills.
This man modelled for me in Paris….a beautiful dancer. I often do quick portraits of my subjects in a nude painting session.
It’s exciting to see that ‘life painting/drawing’ is back in vogue. I believe that many people who attend life sessions recognise how relaxing it is…..in many ways it is a form of meditation.
twenty minute watercolour –
After the painting session, Miza and I returned to New Brighton a suburb of Liverpool. Later, we took a tube train which ran beneath the River Mersey…..(it was not crowded !) this took us into the centre of Liverpool….where we met fellow, blogger, artist, and all round amazing person, Dina Cuthbertson, and then my goodness did we have fun:)
Twenty minute portrait of Scarlett – during a life painting session.
I left Liverpool knowing that I want to return. The people were so very friendly and I hear more and more about the art scene there….excellent galleries, etc.
The magical hummingbirds were clearly with me during my quick but very sweet visit – always reminding me to drink from the sweet nectar of life…..