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The Birds, Leytonstone, 18 October 2022

1 Nov 2022

First the bad news. This was supposed to day one of a Tuesday-Wednesday booking for Leytonstone Life Drawing at The Birds. Sadly only a few hours before I arrived, group organiser Jennifer was told by the venue that she could no longer make use of the upstairs function room on Wednesdays. My two-day gig had halved. All I could do was make the most of this evening.

On the plus side, so many artists turned up to draw that it felt as though I was posing for two evening’s worth of people in one go. We started with quick stuff, five 2-minute poses, followed by three 5-minute poses: standing, kneeling, standing, standing, and standing; then sitting, standing, sitting again. It hardly sounds inspiring seems when I write it like that, but do allow for varying rotations, contortions, twists and angles.

At this point I believe the original intent was to continue with two poses of 10 minutes each. Jennifer was keen to pop home and fetch some extra lighting, however, so she delegated timing duties to a trusted regular attendee and asked for a 20-minute pose instead. No problem. While I stood with my left hand raised, right hand down and out, those who wished to sketch for shorter periods simply moved about the room.

After a break for drinks and socialising, artists were given a choice: would they prefer one pose of 45 minutes or two poses of 25 and 20 minutes? It seemed only a third of the group felt sufficiently impassioned to take part in the show of hands, but the clear preference was two poses. For the first, I stood with both hands outstretched at waist level; for the second, I sat with left leg outstretched, right crossing over, left arm up

What a great session for a talented group. It was another of those rarities in which I’d felt I was smiling all the way through. I would have loved a second evening with them but, alas, it wasn’t to be. And now Leytonstone Life Drawing needs a new home so anybody reading this with a venue in Leyton and a passion for art, get in touch! Send ideas to J_wolfmail[at] – Thank you. 🙂

From → Art

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