15 May The Human Form as Art….Most. Beautiful. Subject. Ever.
Figure Drawing, Tony Wood
What could be more beautiful than the human form? Perfectly created, each one of us unique and special, no two alike. How is that possible? My mind cannot take it in. We are all beautiful: humans of all ages, shapes, sizes, races, backgrounds and beliefs. It can be hard to remember that when life gets in the way. My mom used to say that is why God makes us sleep. We are quiet then, peaceful and silent. (well most of us) When we are silent, true beauty surfaces. It is easier to see past our differences. To see the beauty that is the life in front of us.
This is also why I have discovered a true love for paintings and drawings of the human form. Paintings are quiet and still. They don’t talk back and don’t make you feel strange when you stare at them. In paintings we have the unique opportunity to look at someone. REALLY look at them! Study every line. Every curve, every wrinkle. I find portraits fascinating too! To stare into the face of a stranger, looking deep into their eyes, wondering what their story is. Where did they come from? Where are they going? What are their dreams and goals? Have they reached them? Did they have a good life?
I recently met someone who I think is a brilliant artist in both human form and portraits, Tony Wood (www.twoodstudios.com / artist featured in the thumbnail shown above). I purchased a charcoal sketch of a woman from him and have been given an opportunity to sit for him while he paints my portrait. I am so thrilled at the opportunity for someone as talented as he to study me and put his impression of me on canvas.
I remember when I was a young woman, 21 or so, I had returned from an extended stay in Europe and decided to visit California for the first time with some friends. It was our first night in San Diego and we went out to a very upscale bar, where the young-professional, after hours crowd had gathered. We weren’t there terribly long when a man came over to me and handed me a piece of paper. On it he had drawn a picture. It was ME! Just as I was. Sitting there, drinking a glass of wine and laughing. I couldn’t believe it and he didn’t stay. All he said was my energy had captivated him, my smile was radiant and I had inspired the sketch. He thanked me and left. I have no idea who he was but I still have the sketch and will never forget that night.
Now here I am…….lets just call it a few years later…….and I have the opportunity to pose again. This time I will be aware that I am posing. I hope I don’t mess it up with my nerves. I will most assuredly post and let you all know how it goes. In the meantime, as always, I urge you all to actually go into a gallery the next time you pass one, and stop at the portrait or at the figure drawings. You know, the ones you usually walk right past. This time stop. Look. Stare if you need to. Its ok, they aren’t looking back. Study the lines. Look at the shapes and forms. The play of the light. Look deep into their eyes. You just might discover an appreciation of the human form too. And if you don’t, well that’s ok also. You stopped when you normally wouldn’t. And that is growth my friends! Each small step is after all a step.
Don’t be afraid….Art cannot hurt you!