Sunday, 11 December 2011

Catching up with Channel 4's Life Class: Today's Nude series.

A quick sketch done during the John Berger/Maria Muñoz episode.    I really need to go to a regular life class.  As you can see! 
But I found Maria - dancer and one half of Mal Pelo- so fascinating to observe  - her tough yet elfin androgynous grace. 
All episodes are intriguing though. I loved the encouraging guidance and sensitive comments by tutor Judy Purbeck in episode 2.  Once begun, I had to watch the lot in one session. They are only half an hour long each and as I was drawing along each time, they really sped by!  My only criticism would be that there was sometimes too much commentary in situ. I was quite happy for silence to reign, sometimes artists (Hume and Ocean specifically) seemed to feel an obligation to speak (very distracting for the artist and observer both, I think) rather than just leaving us to observe/draw.  Perhaps an occasional split screen might have been more useful at certain moments to reveal how the featured artists were progressing along.

Watch series one here (UK ONLY? Probably)
There's also a great flickr pool of others' drawings in direct response to the programmes here

As Maggi Hambling (the artist who accompanies us in episode one - a definite highlight!) and others emphasised: although the series makes a great introduction to life drawing, it's a completely different experience - a privilege actually - to really draw "from the life".
Why not have a go?  Is there a class near you?

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