Yesterday I participated in another online life drawing session with London Drawing. The model was Andrea: @andrea.morani_lifemodel on Instagram. Andrea was in his studio in Italy. The 200 or so people drawing him were distributed across the world.
Here are some monoprint sketches of Laetitia, a ballerina with the Opera de Paris. This was a life drawing session , 9th May 2020, organised by @londondrawing. 200 people took part, from all over the world.
London Drawing (@LondonDrawing) organised another online life drawing session, this time with the model David Wan (@DavidWanLondon).
These pictures are monoprints, made by drawing or pressing on the paper which is placed on top of an inky sheet. What you see is the reverse of the sketch. The places where I pressed took up the ink. It’s like drawing or pressing on top of carbon paper, if you remember carbon paper. I like the technique because I can’t see what I’m drawing, so the lines tend to be more free, and I worry less about “getting it right”. The dark patches are made by pressing in the paper with fingers or an object, so it’s possible to get very dark tones quickly, which I like. It’s also a bit unpredictable, at least for a beginner like me, I have, so that the picture is a bit of a surprise. It helps that the picture is a mirror image, so when it appears, it’s different from what I drew.
If you’d like to see examples of a master of this technique, see the website or instagram account of John Carbery, @johncarbery.
“London Drawing” run Life Drawing sessions in libraries and various other locations in London. Right now, they can’t. So in an imaginative and entrepreneurial move, they are running life drawing session online. Yesterday I mastered the technology and had a go.
Here’s the result. The model is Adrian (@modbodadrian).
How is drawing a life model online different from just copying a photo?
Well, there’s the time factor. The model can only hold the pose for a limited time, and so I have to draw quickly. The shortest pose was 2 minutes and the longest about 20 mins.
Then there’s the fact that the model is making an effort: he’s there and he’s doing his best to create a striking pose and keep still. So I want to honour his effort and do my best also. That creates a useful dynamic to concentrate.
And there’s the fact that each of these pictures records a moment in time: the person was there, in their space, and the rest of us were dispersed about the country (and some in the USA!) all drawing the same model at the same time. So this is my record of the event.
It was a good experience and I am grateful to London Drawing for organising this and to the model for his good humour, experience and professionalism.
The session was conducted over “Zoom”, with about 20 people drawing, and two online organisers and the model.