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The Weary Gladiator

January 22, 2015

I don’t usually post nude figure drawings on this blog. I have another page for that (over here).  But, as my life drawing classwork gets better, there’s becoming an overlap between the academic stuff, and the urban sketching. The way I’m doing spontaneous watercolor portraits – it’s all sort of all the same thing these days.

Anyway, I won’t make a habit of  it. Posting too many life drawing studies just gets repetitive. But I did go to a couple sessions the other week – as part the traditional “It’s January, let’s go back to the gym”, kind of new years resolution :)


[Figure drawing workshop, various 10, 15 and 20 minute poses, watercolor, working wet-on-dry]

The model for this session was an older gentleman, in great shape for a person of any age.  In his youth, he must have been a handsome beast.

I always give models a little code name in my head. This guy was ‘the weary gladiator’.


I don’t know if he’s been a life-long art model – but he clearly knows how to set a pose. One of the best I’ve seen in Montreal. You occasionally see models use a wooden pole for supporting a raised arm. But not many models use posing blocks. Simple cubes of wood that let you raise a hand or foot, or brace a neck.  It’s an old-school technique that really helps shape the body. In traditional ateliers you might even find block and tackle to allow hanging a model from the ceiling.


This was at UQAM at the Sunday afternoon quick pose session. It’s a good work environment, (tables, easels, benches), always with good models. If 5-20’s are your thing, I recommend checking it out. I will say, the spots by the door are back lit by the skylights at this time of year – so head to the back of the room unless you like silhouette shapes as much as I do.


8 Comments leave one →
  1. Luce permalink
    January 22, 2015 12:38 PM

    i very much enjoy your blog

  2. January 22, 2015 12:42 PM

    Reblogged this on hebrideanpostcards and commented:
    What an inspiration, as well as the good example!

  3. January 22, 2015 2:16 PM

    I love the restraint in these sketches.

    • January 22, 2015 2:34 PM

      Thanks! But the restraint is really a result of time :) that’s the beauty of sketching – you impose limits on yourself, to see what you can do with the time allowed :)

  4. January 22, 2015 3:22 PM

    You do so well with watercolor. These are lovely.

  5. Robin King permalink
    January 22, 2015 3:53 PM

    Oh, my gosh! Wonderful! You bring so much emotion to these. They tell stories…



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