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The Cambria, London, 29 March 2017

3 April 2017

I cannot remember the last time I wore a tie for office work – it’s all open-neck collars these days – yet I was wearing one for life model work on Wednesday evening; a hat too, but otherwise remained open bodied. Esther and I had been booked together for duo poses at The Cambria, so we decided to create a loose narrative. We began by standing back-to-back for 15-minutes, with Esther applying lipstick while I checked a pocket watch; then we both turned and Esther grabbed my tie for 15-minutes more.


© Tatiana Moressoni, Camberwell Life Drawing.


© Tatiana Moressoni, Camberwell Life Drawing.

I perched on the famous Camberwell Life Drawing sofa to begin our second pose, and intended to place my left hand on its back. On the spur of the moment, however, I’d grabbed the brim of my hat instead, and paid for that decision with the discomfort of an unsupported arm throughout. For the half-an-hour that followed, it was Esther’s turn to perch on the sofa whilst I took it easy in a recline on the floor. She’d pulled on her red stilettos and draped them over my body; no problem, except for one catch…


© Tatiana Moressoni, Camberwell Life Drawing.

Sprawled out beneath Esther’s legs, I was nicely comfortable until I needed to take a deeper breath, whereupon I felt a jolt of pain in my side. I didn’t know the cause but I knew I didn’t want a repeat of it, so my inhalations became gruellingly shallow for the remainder of that long pose. Only afterwards did we realise that a stiletto buckle had slipped between two of my ribs. Ouch! For two 20-minute poses after the break, I sat on a chair: first embracing Esther, then supporting her as she straddled my thighs.


© Tatiana Moressoni, Camberwell Life Drawing.

Our final pose idea had been entirely spontaneous. Only once underway did it occur to us that we might appear a tad too erotic for some tastes. Hopefully not. Indeed, if the resulting artworks are any indication then those present were especially inspired. After dressing and packing away, we joined our friend and group organiser, Tatiana, plus a few artists in the bar for drinks and chips. Camberwell Life Drawing remains a great place to model, to draw and to socialise – it’s always a pleasure to return.

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