Susannah modelled at the final January session. Lots of nice poses, but my drawings were a bit hit and miss.

Katrina modelled at this special ‘animation’ life drawing session with short poses. Normally there are poses from 2 minutes up, but we had several 1 minute poses and (after I begged) some 30 second ones too.

We began with a sequence of 1 minute poses.

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There were several longer poses dotted about through the session. The hand studies were drawn during a 15 minute pose, and the others were 10 minute poses.

It was fantastic to do some live 30 second drawings again. It’s such a good way to learn gesture and storytelling, and to train to speed up in longer poses.

Near the end of the session we had some more 1 minute poses. By this point I was able to get details down more quickly.

It was great to have more quick poses at life drawing. Hopefully this will become a regular thing, and, who knows, perhaps I’ll manage to convince everyone to do 10 second poses next time …

There were three models at this session, because Bill stepped in for the first few minutes as Francesca and Pete were delayed!

I tested out a new 10B pencil which was lovely to draw with. I liked being able to easily switch between a soft and sharp line (something I can’t seem to get the hang of with conte). It was also great for shading.

This was the last session before Christmas, so I’ve been looking forward to a special one next week with shorter poses.

Morna modelled for our first December session. I was struggling with the conte pastel so did most of the drawings in pencil.

I have been snowed under with a job, Christmas, and a new niece (all very exciting but quite hard work) and that’s meant my life drawing from last year has been put aside until now.

First up are drawings of model Gina, from back in November!

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Some life drawing sketches of Sarah with her cello. I struggled a bit with the conte pastel, so I abandoned it for the pencil. The cello was difficult to draw!

I’ve got one more week to catch up on which I’ll post tomorrow.

Some very late sketches, modelled by Susan.

I have two more weeks of drawing to post which I’ll upload over the next two days.

For the penultimate character I’ve drawn Kinsey, who I’ve illustrated before but wanted to explore more. I’m writing a script of Kinsey’s Sword and am beginning to think more about what her character will look like.22_Kinsey

Miss Minton is a severe but wonderful woman in Eva Ibbotson’s Journey to the River Sea, a beautiful book set in the early twentieth century about a young girl discovering the Amazon and the people who live there. I’ll be drawing a couple more of the characters over the next few days.

Back in 2009 I wrote The Dance for NaNoWriMo, or National Novel Writing Month, which takes place every November. Sarah is a maidservant in the court of the king when a magnificent ball takes place. Though she is cleaning, Sarah is asked to dance …

For Sarah’s clothes I took directly from this Crows Eye Productions video. It’s worth checking out their YouTube channel for more videos on period costume!

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Rudy is a very old character of mine, but this is the first time I’ve draw her. In her world centaurs are considered like animals and are hunted for sport (though not to be eaten). As such the stories I’ve made up about her are often quite grim. I’ve heard that many peoples’ first stories can be dark. Her stories will likely never see the light of day …

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For today’s character design I’ve drawn Esther from the Book of Esther in the Old Testament and Tanakh. A Jewish orphan, she became queen of Persia. I enjoyed researching Persian clothing and hairstyles around 500 BC, though I haven’t had time to research in great detail! For Esther’s face and figure I’ve heavily referenced Meg from Hercules.

 

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I meant to post these last weekend, but forgot. I drew them last month, using the Bodies in Motion site, beginning with 30 second poses and gradually giving myself more time. The site is excellent for capturing poses that a model would never be able to hold.

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These next characters come from Robin McKinley’s The Blue Sword, a fantasy novel I adore. As it’s set in the desert land of Damar I took inspiration from The Prince of Egypt for design. Harry (full name Angharad) is the heroine, and I show her here near the beginning of the story when she has been kidnapped by the hill folk.

Though I took time to colour her I really like the pencil lines, so I’ve uploaded them on their own too.

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I was in Edinburgh yesterday for an animation event, so I spent some time drawing in the museum on Chambers Street. I sketched a sperm whale skull and a haughty-looking llama as well as some of the visitors. The sketches are pen on paper, but the tone was added digitally.01b

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These drawings are from last week, but it took me until now to cherry-pick the best to upload. They’re all studies from Bodies in Motion; most of them are of neutral expressions but some of the short poses (between 30 seconds and 2 minutes) were of a variety of emotions. With the longer studies I really focused in on the eyes, nose and mouth to get to grips with the structure and form.

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Last week I went to a show of students’ work where Katrina Ellis, a weaver and life model, modelled with some of her fabric. It was fun, and challenging, to draw.

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