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I retired on July 1st and last night finally went to my first Figure Drawing session.  If you follow this blog, you know that I was practicing for this moment by sketching figures as 90 sec. sketches of posemaniac images, or 5 minute figures from one of two nude figure photo books for artists that I bought.  I'm very glad that I did the prep work over the last several years because I never felt overwhelmed last evening.

I met my dear friend Istar at the Society for Illustrators so I would be with someone who knew the location and process.  The setting is lovely - very open space, live music, a small bar for a glass of wine during the 20 minute break, and hundreds of inspiring illustations lining the walls on all floors.  We had two models - one short and full figured, the other tall, thin, and beautifully coifed.  I frequently couldn't see below their ankles, but on the short poses, I didn't even have time to worry about it.   

The 3 hours flew by - and I did all 19 sketches - 2, 5, 10, and 20 minutes in length.  I'm just so thrilled to finally sketch live models that I'm uploading a total of 7 to this page.  All of the sketches were done with a Koh-i-noor Progresso 6B pencil  on 8 x 11" paper in a Working Class Studio, bound, sketchbook that I bought for half-price at Barnes and Noble.  I have no idea where I got the pencil, but it was smooth and wonderful on the paper. 

Two of Ten 2 minute sketches:




Two of four 5 minute sketches:


Both 10 minute sketches:




Two of three 20 minute sketches: 




Wow !Great sketches. All of them really beautifully done. I've never tried that sort of class. You can be proud of yourself !

WOW! Shirley, these are great! Congratulations and have FUN!

Wonderful Shirley, but then you have been doing wonderful figures for a long time (not my stong suit) and how brave, I would be so self conscious - but I would love to try as well!

I think they are all really good, 2 minutes or 20 minutes, you got the forms and proportions right, some even with expression... hmmmm I am thinking, I don't think I'll be able to sketch a life model, and to create sketches like these in less than half an hour, it's close to impossible really. I admire your skills and speed!

You rocked! These are awesome!

Fantastic!! This is going to change your life ;D. No, really---I predict a whole new dimension to your art life!
Congratulations, Shirley!

Wow, you can get a lot done in 2 minutes. Great sketches, thanks for sharing with us.

I'm so excited for you - and you did a great job. We had our first session of the season last night
and I remembered how hard it is to sketch from a live model - but soooo exilerating! Good job Shirley! I haven't posted mine yet- I'm having a hard time sitting down in front of my computer today, but I will soon.

Hello. I had a long look over your color experiments and they made me inspired to do something similar. Like specially the way you choose a color to explore its possibilities. About the model sketches they made me rimind of some I've done in the last two years. My model was a 40 years old,fat and very brave lady. She posed to me and my other 29 classmates. Maybe someday I'll share them with people the way you did. Anyway, thanks for sharing. Your work is inspiring.

These are wonderful sketches! Very well done. nancy

Shirley, these are terrific! I can see why you are excited about the class. You captured them so well in such a short time span.

I'm sorry I missed this post earlier. This is thrilling, Shirley. All the groundwork you put in is inspiring. I could never sketch such sure form so quickly (or even slowly!). I particularly love your approach to legs. Now I'm wondering why I didn't realise that in lieu of life classes one can achieve so much skill from photos. Brava, brava. It's going to be wonderful watching your progress.

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