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Telegraph Hill Centre, London, 22 January 2015

25 January 2015

Hey, Steve, is that you?” Having posed twice previously for Alexandra Unger at her life drawing group in Telegraph Hill, I’d evidently become recognisable by my shadow; it alone was visible to her as she walked towards where I was waiting.

I’d arrived at the Telegraph Hill Centre five minutes earlier and loitered in its lamp-lit doorway. Alex, together with artist Marco, unlocked and we all entered the pleasingly warm room. We moved tables and chairs; I set down my white sheet, whilst Alex and Marco attended to the heater, kettle, music, lighting and art materials.

I would like you to use your scarf,” said Alex, showing how it might serve to enhance some interesting poses. At £1.49 from QD, I could afford to give it a good workout, so readily agreed. Including Alex herself, there would be five artists present; I would start with a sequence of five 2-minute poses for them.

Looping my scarf around the side panel of a low storage unit, I was left with about half a metre of its length to work with at each end. Next I had to think of five original poses that would work well in this scenario… I selected:

  • standing in a crouched tug-of-war stance
  • one hand and one knee on the floor, facing away from the unit
  • facing back towards the unit, uneven arms, one leg paced forward
  • reaching high, back to the artists, one hand holding the wall’s edge
  • sitting on the floor with both feet up on the side of the unit
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Two 10-minute seated poses followed, with the scarf free from the unit and supporting angled but comfortable arrangements of limbs. The first half of the session ended with a 20-minute standing pose, no scarf, crossed ankles and both hands on my left hip.

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After a break for cookies and a nice hot mug of tea, it was agreed that we should end with two poses of 15 minutes and 30 minutes. For the initial pose I sat with one knee sideways on the floor, the other raised, and my arms forming a kind of crucifix outline with it. It was the trickiest pose of the evening – Alex described is almost cubist.

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For the last half-hour I had a relaxing lay down whilst Alex positioned her lamplight to cast shadows across my ribcage. “With more time,” she said afterwards, “it could be an anatomy class.

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Job done, I dressed and departed all too soon. It’s one of my longer journeys to travel between Nunhead station and home in Essex but it’s worth every moment. The group is firmly among the most enjoyable to work for. It’s friendly, the standard of drawing is very high yet never pressured; it’s warm, comfortable and there’s always great music.

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It’s a real gem in the crown of London’s wildly diverse life drawing scene.

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From → Art

One Comment
  1. wow your physique is so like mine I thought they were drawings of me at first glance. You obviously have loads of experience regards steve (northern model) 🙂

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