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The Star by Hackney Downs, 3 May 2016

7 May 2016

I awoke in Venice with Esther at the equivalent of 1:45am, UK time. At 8am our flight touched down at Gatwick airport. I was home by a quarter to one in the afternoon. Shopping, showering and unpacking followed, after which I tried to grab some sleep but managed just an hour’s worth before being disturbed by the phone. Failing to drop off again, I did some computer stuff, prepared a light tea and then, at 6pm, headed off to Hackney for a spot of modelling.

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After so much travelling, and such little sleep, I feared that exhaustion might catch up with me at some point; that in extremis, I might even nod off. I need not have worried, however. It’s such a lively life drawing group at The Star by Hackney Downs that I felt alert and in pretty good form throughout. Furthermore, it was the busiest I’d ever seen it, with perhaps as many as sixteen artists managing to draw comfortably in a relatively small space.

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Catherine Hall called the pose times and suggested whether poses should be on a high stool, low stool, chair or the floor. It was pretty much all short and dynamic work, something I had been relying on to keep me awake: 5-minutes, 4, 3, 2, then three of 1-minute, three of 30-seconds, two of 10-minutes, a break, and finally 10-minutes and 20-minutes to a close. I felt I’d travelled far in the day, until Catherine told me she too would be visiting Venice at the weekend. It is, of course, a small world…

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