If you’re a reader of my blog (first of all, Thanks!) you’ll know that Diane and I decided to celebrate our anniversary with a 6 month adventure rather than a cruise or trip abroad that would only last a week or so. She to really immerse herself in workshops and open studio time at the Scottsdale Artist School and me to devote time to developing my carving and gilding of picture frames. Being in a 2 bedroom apartment definitely means I don’t have any power equipment so focusing on the carving is my main thing. In addition though, I interviewed and was hired as a portrait model for the school. This has been a really cool experience and although it isn’t my usual woodworking thing I’ll blog about it anyway.
For the past two days I’ve modeled for Rose Frantzen, a very well known artist from Iowa. She has studied with artists that I’ve heard Diane talk about for quite some time. In case you think modeling is just a matter of sitting there and “looking pretty” let me tell you it’s not quite that simple! For this session there is another model, half of the class of 17 does me one day and the other half painted her. The next day we’ll switch so everyone has the same models and experiences. Rose goes from one to another and instructs them in her beautiful style of portraiture and listening to her gives me quite an education! In keeping with my first post of How Others See Me I’ll put together a slide show of each days work. Keep in mind that I’m on an artists stand, lit up, and the artists are around me in a semi-circle so each of their views is different. The skill level of the workshop participants is evident in their work. Keep in mind they only had 6 hours of time that is divided into 25 minute segments with a 5 minute break. They all take photographs so they can finish the portrait at their own studios if they desire. We take an hour for lunch. Here are the results of Saturdays work:
As a teacher I really enjoyed listening to Rose as she went from one student to the next helping and encouraging them to learn and achieve what she has to show them. The energy in the room is evident and infectious! Like me, she’s a definite hands on teacher which I feel is the best way to teach. Don’t ever put a paintbrush in my hand and expect something good to happen but between the conversations Diane and I have and listening to Rose explain the techniques of shading, edging, color, etc. I could be an “armchair artist”. Really a great class and experience, here are the results from the second days sitting:
You’ll notice the stick that a few painted in today. Rose had me hold the stick to create a curvature in my shoulders. In case you’re wondering how the same pose is achieved after a break the chair and floor are taped the first day to show my basic position. On the stick I marked where my hands were and then found a spot on the wall to focus my eyes on. The artists would have me make very slight corrections to the tilt and angle of my head so the shadows and highlights were consistent for the entire day. I have a break in my modeling schedule until the latter part of this month so it’s on to more frames.