I spent the little window of free time i had this weekend walking up to the Gage Academy, Seattle’s famed art school, for their 2012 “Drawing Jam”. It sounded too good to be true–you walk in and they have everything set up for you: easels, supply stations, and each room is open and filled with live models, some in costumes, acrobats, nudes, and even an elaborate set-up of scaffolding. And, for teens, it’s FREE. Yeah, Too good too be true. But, there’s no catch.
If you live in the Seattle area, artist or not, Drawing Jam is an amazing opportunity, and is definitely worth going to next year. I have only sketched a live model once at a one-day class, so i was psyched about getting a chance to really explore it in-depth. And I DID. Although I didn’t get any great ketches out of it, the whole event was an amazing experience and extraordinary practice.
And here are the pastel-colored ones:
Then, there’s the nude. Being a high school student, I’ve never drawn a nude before, and the thought of it always seems a bit uncomfortable and awkward. Growing up, you don’t see much of the human body, with society these days considering it’s image “scandalous”. But we all have one. And I believe people should become more comfortable with the beauty of it. Anyways, I saw the nude sign and was immediately interested, thinking that when else was i going to have the opportunity to draw a nude until college? So I went right on in, and was greeted by a dark grey room full of quiet artists sketching a group of female acrobats, their faces painted and their hair in dreads, very native looking (they reminded me of the movie Avatar). I had no idea how people were drawing them when they moved around so quickly though, and so i decided to leave. Later, i regretted it, telling myself i wouldn’t get this opportunity for a while. So i went to another nude drawing session, where there were two males and one female. The room seemed a bit lighter and less intense, the models were still, and live music played from the corner. I set up, decided to begin with the female, and got into my sketching zone. Looking back on it, what i was most surprised about was the fact that i wasn’t bothered by the nudes–i figured it would be uncomfortable, but once i got in there sat down, set up and just accepted my surroundings, i didn’t care. Then it began to amaze me that this was the first time i had done this. We were born naked. That’s that, that’s natural. It was the first time I’d drawn a human in the natural state.
All in all, this was an amazing expereince from me, very eye-opening, and i learned so much by just exploring. I will definitely show up at Drawing Jam next year!