Last week I didn’t draw, except for my practice at home. Instead I watched and listened to a lot of live music at the 30A Songwriters Festival, which I blogged about in my last post. And last Friday I attended a yoga presentation on the Root Chakra, the first in a 7-week series, a subject which is all new to me. Then on Tuesday a friend and I got together and brought each other up to date, all good. And Wednesday, a whole bunch of artists I hadn’t seen for a while were at figure drawing, at the regular weekly session at Studio b., which was exhilarating.
So whether a positive result of my fledgling efforts to allow more energy to flow through the Root Chakra, or good old-fashioned open communication with a dear friend, or listening to so much good music, I felt very confident in my artistic expression this week. I found myself very quickly lost in the process of executing each pose. When I lose myself is when I enjoy it the most and feel the most successful at capturing what to me is the basic emotive and visual essence of the pose, whether I am focused on the light, or mass, or shapes, texture, or line.
Our model struggled with the standing pose at top left. Supporting herself on one leg with a locked knee, she wasn’t able to hold it for as long as she had intended. Nevertheless, even with the pose a little shorter than expected, I felt completely comfortable with the end result, leaving portions of the drawing a little sketchy. In fact I think I am enjoying that more and more, developing only the more important area of each pose, although I need to be careful not to always leave the feet undeveloped, because that might be suspected laziness. Feet are difficult to draw.
The drawing at upper right is the only drawing I was unsure about, when I was finished, because her right elbow creates a triangular shape above the woman’s throat. Effective composition requires the artist to be judicious, to leave out visual description which merely confuses. So I worked on this drawing when I got home, removing the elbow shape entirely, and then drawing it back in. Sometimes it is that little quirk of confusion that requires the viewer to puzzle for a moment, and engage a bit more, holding his attention for a bit longer. And in this day and age of instant communication, holding someone’s attention is like gold to an artist.
Speaking of attention, to those of you who wade through my blogs each week, from the bottom of my heart, thank you! You don’t even have to say anything, though I love it if you do — I feed off your collective support. May we all give support to each other for our efforts at creative expression, whatever the avenue!
Most of my images are available for purchase. Contact me if you are interested. — Joan Vienot
1 thought on “Figure Drawing: The Power of the Group, Chakra Work, Music and Communication”
Joan, as always I so enjoy and appreciate your willingness to share your art journey. The clarity of your thoughts as you work your way through process reveals a deeper level of understanding allowing me to see it through the artist eye and soul. One of your thoughts “developing only the more important area of each pose” resonates personally for me. I struggle with this concept continually, it’s become the main focus of my own mark making, how to leave out everything I consider to be noise, leaving just enough information for a viewer to complete the intention. Keep up your great work and thanks for sharing.