Life Drawing Hen Parties

ally katte back big hairI’ve always enjoyed life drawing, there’s something about the human body that I find compelling; all of the lines, curves, tones that flow and shape themselves into a figure, have an elemental beauty.

That being said, perhaps my favourite thing about life drawing is how it can be used for fun and exploration, experimentation and play, and all those other exciting drawing-related words.  It’s for this reason I was chuffed to become the life drawing teacher for Betty’s Birds hen parties last year.  Quite often as an adult we don’t get much chance to ‘play’, which is a real shame; so I created a life drawing workshop that is all about drawing exercises and games!  Would you believe it – the fun all adds up to help in improving drawing skills too…

Want to have a go yourself?  Fancy a party with a difference? It’s definitely worth checking out Betty’s Birds!

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Now and Then drawing of a girl in the snow

Now and Then

drawing by Laura Elliott age 7Scribbling in my ‘Stories’ book, crayon clutched in fist, wonderful worlds appear where the sky doesn’t touch the horizon, dresses are simply triangles and snowflakes are the size of footballs.  Welcome to 7-year-old me.

Having been through art school, my current drawings don’t quite have the same care-free naivety where objects endearingly levitate.  This is why I was excited to discover the Now and Then project, where for one artwork only, I could re-live the suspension of all artistic and scientific rules.  No more perspective, or pesky gravity!  The project asked artists to find an artwork drawn by themselves aged 8 or younger and then re-create it in their current artistic style.

Fortunately for me, my Mum was sentimental enough to hang on to a couple of masterpieces from my youth.  I picked a ‘story’ from the 15th January 1992 about my favourite weather…  Unfortunately I’d not illustrated my poem about dinosaurs (my favourite line being ‘dinosaurs are naughty’).Laura Elliott 'Favourite Weather' Age 28

Doing an updated version of this artwork was a real pleasure, I like to think that I was pretty faithful to the original.

Ear Piercings

Every day is a school day – today you can learn all about parts of the ear.  Are there any parts you already have pierced?  I can tick off rook, tragus and lobes…Illustration of an ear to show parts that can be pierced

heart illustration diagram

This One’s For The Lovers

Merry Valentine’s Season!  If you love someone but aren’t sure how to say it, let me help you.  In my true idiosyncratic way, this picture is for you to share with your loved ones, when those three little words don’t seem to quite cut it.

diagram of a human heart with a 'you are here' sign

Dr Sketchy’s Bristol – A Diva, A Drag Queen and Some Dangerpants

Hooray!  I had an opportunity to go out into the world and draw real life burlesque models last week at Dr Sketchy’s.  Behold – my favourite scribblings from each model:

The Diva – Ramona Rose

pen and pencil sketch of burlesque performer Ramona Rose

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Drag Queen – Dis Charge.  (It made my day when Dis Charge performed an Amanda Palmer song)

pen and pencil sketch of drag queen burlesque performer Dis Charge

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Dangerpants – Daphne Dangerpants

pen and pencil sketch of burlesque performer Daphne Dangerpants

pencil sketch of a burlesque performer with white feather fans and a white costume

Burlesque Sketches

As a warm up for my drawing, I like to do a lot of figure sketches.  As I have a fondness for burlesque, a lot of my sketches revolve around that theme.  Behold, a feathered lady and an aerial hoop artist.

Fashion Illustration with a Stick. Yes, I Said a Stick.

Today’s warm up comprised of some quick 2 minute sketches and some detailed blind contour drawings.  If you’ve ever experienced blind contour (drawing without looking at your page and only at your subject) you’ll know that it looks like you’ve tried drawing whilst on the bus with your ‘wrong’ hand.  It takes a lot of concentration to feel each bump and curve with your eyes but you do sometimes come out with incredible line work.  Even if it looks like you’ve been on a jolting bus.

 

After the tight lines of blind contours, I wanted to loosen up a little.  For this, I returned to a method that I hadn’t used in a long time – drawing with sticks.  The sticks I used were about 25cm long, and I held it towards the far end, to force my hand away from the page.  I love the texture of line that you can create with sticks, and I’m pretty happy with how these figure illustrations came out.