I mentioned in my last post that I had tried to “loosen up” in my approach to life drawing. But loosen up from what?
These drawings may provide some sense of how I used to gravitate to detail.
After I finished art college in 1983, I started to go to the British Museum to make very detailed drawings on the spot. It was a sort of “boot camp” for getting past the discomfort of people looking over my shoulder while I was working. The more a drawing neared completion, the more they looked. And I discovered that crass generalizations about particular nationalities have a grain of truth. Americans wanted to talk, Italians sat next to me (sometimes a very welcome distraction…) and English people – well they frequently pretended they hadn’t been looking in the first place.
The single portrait here is of a friend, Marie Thérèse, known as MT. That was genuinely her daily styling at the time. I worked from photographs of her, but Ramesses was drawn directly in the Egyptian Galleries – from life as it were!