What’s your name no one’s gonna ask you

I’ve been doing a lot of life drawing around town lately. I love it!!  Truth is so much stranger than fiction; I would never think to invent the characters I see on the street.  It’s a great reminder about variety/diversity in everything from proportions to how people walk and stand to their mannerisms to clothing and hair styles.  Here’s a big ol’ post of the drawings I’ve done in the last month:

I love Paris in the rain

Sketches from life drawing last night (NSFW):

30 seconds:
30 seconds – 2 minutes:
 2-5 minutes:
5 minutes:
5-10 minutes:
10 minutes:
20 minutes:

I’m currently listening to:

I’ll never reach my destination if I never try

Periscope went to the Oregon Zoo on a life drawing trip Wednesday. I LOOOOVE our zoo life drawing trips! It’s great practice, plus all of the usual fun you get at the zoo. Cute kids, cool animals, friends, walking around outside, and drawing. The best things. You can see my sketches from our 2011 trip here.

This year I wasn’t thrilled with my drawings–a lot of these felt like steps backwards–but there were a couple I was really happy with.  We might be going again next month, and if we do I plan to spend a longer period of time with fewer animals, so I can actually nail down their constructions.

Take the heartland

Life drawing sketches from tonight (NSFW):

You’ve just gotta do it your way

We tried something new at life drawing last night: rather than pay a nude model, we asked attendees to bring any props or interesting outfits they had and model for the group if they were willing to. It was free, it was great drapery practice, and it got really fun when we brought out the handguns.

At the time, I really hated my brushpen sketches, but in hindsight they are my favorites. I need to not even bring a pencil next time and force myself to focus on light without worrying about proportions.

I’m stepping out

Doodles from this month’s life drawing session (NSFW!!!!):

I do declare I’m in a state

Periscope went to the zoo today to draw the animals from life!

I like drawing adults holding children to practice weight.

The top right drawing is an example of what happens when someone knows I’m drawing them. My high school art teacher taught me that once someone makes eye contact with you 3 times, it’s time to drop it and move on.

The polar bear was probably my favorite animal to draw today. That arched nose and the multiple head bumps are really interesting, and the way their massive weight shifts when they walk, swim, and stand up is really striking. I can’t believe how long their necks appear when they stretch their heads up!

That’s ‘knows’. (-__-)

Colobus monkeys are awesomely fun to draw. I can draw nothing if I can’t draw long, trailing hair.

Here is where my blood sugar dipped dangerously low.


I’m falling upstairs to meet you

More life drawing sketches! Heed me: this is NSFW.

I am SO GLAD we are organizing monthly life drawing sessions. I have a woman’s body, right? But drawing a woman’s body last night made me realize several things that are going to help me draw women more accurately from now on. I have realizations like that every time I draw people from life.
If you are an artist, but you can’t take a figure drawing class for whatever reason, search around your city for drop-in sessions you can join. In Portland we have Hipbone, The Canvas, and countless bars and cafes that do regular life drawing nights.


Right around here, Ben Dewey recommended I focus on contour shading with my extra time. I said “Yes, Sensei,” and broke out some blue lead so I could get my messy sketch of the model down first, then go in with pencil for neat lines and add shadow onto a cleaner drawing:

Momentum, for the sake of momentum

I went to a life drawing session tonight! It’s so good for me–I’m going to try and go monthly. Eventually, I will be able to draw men!
Check out Joëlle Jones’ sketches from the same session! Dzamn!

^The upper right sketch is my favorite :)

Copyright © Natalie Nourigat