In the absence of people to draw for the first part (I’ll come back to it), I’ve made a start on Part 2 and since I’m not going to use nude models but still need to find anatomical form that isn’t hidden by clothing, I’ve searched online for images of dancers and gymnasts. The first images I found immediately put me in mind of Paula Rego but my execution falls way short!
The image I’ve used is from a 2015 article in The Conversation about Force Majeure and their production of Nothing to Lose. Disturbingly, while successive attempts generally bring improvements, I think my first effort has more life in it. The arms, head angle, chest – and most other parts, come to that – are out of wack so I’m going to vignette some of them using zoom so I can get a closer look. Conte is becoming my go-to sketching medium. Maybe I should hide it for a while and try something else.
Dancer is Ally Garrett, photo credit Toby Burrows.
Not sure this is improving but I’m hopeful. At least my model doesn’t need a comfort break!
Tomorrow – same image, different image? There are four more dancers I can do a dismal disservice!
12th June, same image but this time from memory to reduce distracting focus on detail.
These feel much more alive and consistent with the spirit of the dancer. The initial drawings obviously helped me get to the shapes she makes and the proportions, but leaving the original behind seems to have brought out more movement.
14th June. I’ve been doing some quick sketches from art sites and one or two featuring more ordinary poses. Fairly awful but here they are, willow charcoal and linseed oil and a couple using charcoal pencil which seems quite firm.
I’m having trouble with heads and faces; the men with ‘beards’ don’t have beards, but I can feel the ‘feel’ coming on. A few more of these and I’ll start rounding up some live bait in the hopes of not rendering them scary. Charcoal with linseed oil is an interesting combination, especially on a gesso-prepped surface, but it’s also quite lively and liable to do its own thing then be unamenable to change.