Illustration Friday: Poise

 Dr. Sketchy Atlanta #2
(click images to enlarge them)

Perhaps an unusual choice for this week’s Illustration Friday topic, anyone who can model so unselfconsciously for life drawing strikes me as the epitome of poise. This model in particular managed to look positively serene while wearing french powdered wig in a very crowded and noisy bar while people were staring at her and scribbling frantically.

While I was attending the SWSX conference in March, I had the great fortune to attend an event which included a session of Dr. Sketchy’s Anti-Art School.  There’s more info at the link, but in brief it’s like a life drawing class except instead of in a formal art studio it’s at a bar or club, and instead of a nude model you have a cabaret or burlesque performer in costume.

Dr. Sketchy Atlanta #1

In this particular case, the life drawing was going on in the back of the club, while an actual burlesque show was going on at the main stage. Because it was part of the conference it was packed, but I managed to snag a stool and pad of paper in the drawing area. The performers were lining up to model when they were between sets, they were so excited to participate. It was very cool!

We only did five-minute poses. It has been sooooo long since I did life drawing like this, much less while balancing a pad of paper on my knee sitting on a barstool, but it was great fun.

Dr. Sketchy Atlanta #3

Unfortunately, just as I really felt I was getting warmed up, the rest of my cohorts were ready to move on. But I got several very nice sketches done, and they even managed to survive the night intact.

There are Dr. Sketchy’s clubs scattered all over the country… if this sounds like fun to you, google to see if there’s one near you!

2 thoughts on “Illustration Friday: Poise

  1. What a wonderful idea! I used to love life drawing classes when I was young (teens and twenties), and while I still love the human figure, I am not particularly interested in drawing nudes any more. I would much rather draw folks in a noisy bar than in a life drawing studio. I’ve been hauling my sketchbook around, but I’ve found that most people move around way too much, even when they look like they’re being still. A five minute pose sounds wonderful to me.

    I really like these sketches, especially the middle one in red with two people.

  2. Thank you! I have a couple others from the set I may post, including another with one of the models from that middle image in a very similar pose.

    I have the same problem with drawing people in public spaces. Now I just have to try and make it to my local Dr. Sketchy’s! (which unfortunately meets alternate Monday evenings, not the easiest time for me to slip away….)

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