Life Drawings / March 13

I have been spending a great deal of time working with and posting the results of my iPad digital artwork. It has been a long time since I worked with my favorite medium for life drawing, pastels. I finally got back to using them yesterday at the local life drawing group. After working on the relatively small format of the iPad (I use the 9.7 inch version), it felt good to get back to pastels and real paper measuring 18″ x 24″. But I must say that it was a bit of a struggle. Having worked in the digital medium for the last two and a half months, it was something of a shock, like being in a foreign country speaking a somewhat rusty language!

I find that the medium I’m working with tends to dictate certain elements of the style of the finished work. If I’m doing block prints, the carving of the block creates a certain angular look. With pen and ink there is a different feeling, more line oriented and with pen and ink & watercolor, yet again a different result. Using the pastels for life drawing, holding the pastel stick along its length, I use broad swatches of color and bold line (especially in the shorter poses). This is a more “physical” kind of drawing for me and I missed doing it so it felt good to get back to. It will take a while to feel fully comfortable drawing with pastels again but I enjoyed rekindling the experience of using them.

Short poses
Five minute pose – pastels
Five minute pose – pastels
Five minute pose – pastels
Five minute pose – pastels
Longer poses
Twenty minute pose – pastels
Twenty minute pose – pastels
Twenty minute pose – pastels

Author: Jeff Gold

I'm a retired musician (oboist) now living in Vermont and exploring various avenues of art, urban sketching, life drawing, block printing and digital abstractions.

6 thoughts on “Life Drawings / March 13”

  1. I love seeing your pastels, and it seems to me that you have not forgotten how to speak this language at all. In fact, to me it seems that you have returned home with these pastels. The figures have a volume that no amount of digital “paint” can create. So beautifully done Jeff.

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    1. Shari, Thanks so much for your vote of confidence! I’m very pleased that you like them. I did enjoy getting back to using the pastels. I will no doubt be going back and forth between analog and digital drawing. Thanks again for writing.

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  2. I agree with Shari! Doesn’t look like you’ve forgotten to me. I have used pastels a lot in life drawing and like being able to make big sweeping gestures. I’d really like to get back to painting in acrylics though – but it needs longer poses and the groups I go to here have a max of 20 minutes per pose! Dang

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    1. Thanks Jon. If there are facilities for using water based paints in the facility where you meet, you might still try to use acrylics. There are a couple of people in our group who sometimes use water based paints and mixed media even on the shorter poses. It may not work with your normal method of acrylic painting but you might find a way to splash it on and still have a usable result. Just a suggestion. Thanks again for writing. I really do appreciate your comment. Keep in touch.

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