contour drawing with watercolor in a sketchbook
Last summer I took an evening figure drawing class at UW Madison, and was very excited and engaged in working from direct observation, something I do fairly infrequently. The only difficulty for me was that Madison is 40 miles away, which requires almost an hour driving each way. The class got over at 10:00 PM, which is late for me, and there was lots of road construction which added to my frustration. So, I thought I had the problems solved when I enrolled in a class called "Figurative Painting" on Sunday mornings this summer.
The timing is fine, and I like being able to drive during the day, but this class also has a couple frustrations for me. For one thing, most people are painting in oil, a medium that I am just learning. I did use oil one week, and liked the results well enough. It's just that I don't want oil paintings of people reclining in chairs. What do I DO with the darn things later? Also, instead of there being a series of poses, this is a three hour session with one pose. Every week someone reclines in the overstuffed chair, and sits there for the entire time. I understand that the model needs to be comfortable, but they also look bored, and I hate to admit it, but I am too.
ink and watercolor in my sketchbook
The way I have been trying to deal with this is by doing series of quick draws, some on paper in a medium-sized sketchbook, some on Tyvek, some on Arches watercolor paper. This time I even moved around a little to get a different vantage point, but the studio is rather crowded, and I don't want to disturb other people who are slaving over one painting.
charcoal and watercolor on Tyvek
Of these three, the last one is the one I worked longest on, and I like it least. It seems stiff, and perhaps a little long in the torso. My color choices weren't too exciting either. Looking at my efforts from Sunday and seeing what I've written makes me think I just need an attitude adjustment. Maybe I should just go out and pull crabgrass for a while.