Public nudity, when not considered a criminal offense, can conjure up images of a common nightmare: being caught naked among peers. For Life Drawing models, this nightmare is a comfortable reality.
The College of Art and Design held its first community Life Drawing session Tuesday, commonly known as nude drawing. Sessions take place between 7 and 10 p.m. Tuesdays at the Jack Arends Art Building, Room AB 400.
“There’re a lot of people out there who want to do life drawing, but there aren’t many groups out there,” Alfred Stark, session organizer, said. “It’s central to who we are; just like landscapes, figure drawings aren’t going to go away.”
Community Life Drawing sessions provide a place where seasoned artists and beginners alike can practice their observational drawing skills in a studio setting. Models pose atop a small central stage against the east wall of the room. The stage features a chair for seated poses and a bench models for reclined poses.
“I remember the first time drawing at Kishwaukee; it seemed a little awkward at first because I wasn’t used to having someone stand in front of me and get naked so I could draw them,” Stark said. “But you get over it, and it’s like drawing anything else.”
The session began with a series of short poses which gradually increased in duration. The varying durations allows for a mixture of rapid sketches and in-depth drawings. The room was nearly silent as the artists attempted to capture the human form. This session featured a first-time Life Drawing model, Reh Holly.
“I started when my friend, who was working for [Stark], asked her if she had anybody who would want to come in,” Holly said. “She asked, ‘do you wanna make some money?’”
Holly said her desire to model stems from her deep appreciation for the human body. She encouraged those who may be a bit anxious to give it a try.
“The human form is so beautiful,” Holly said. “While it can be sexual or gratuitous, appreciating it doesn’t have to be.”