I am the first to admit that I have been uncomfortable when confronted by nudity. I grew up in Catholic Ireland and at the same time I was very exposed to the culture of England which was and still is so anchored to Victorianism. I’d better be careful here, I don’t want to get political. I just think it’s a pity we have been made to feel so ill at ease in appreciating the naked being. Thankfully, I moved to Sweden. That was 31 years ago so I have had time to adapt to what I still feel is a refreshing attitude towards nudity. It’s such a pity we feel embarrassed by something that is so natural.
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My life drawing classes, which are live-streamed on Zoom begin again this week. I don’t actually get much time to sketch during the sessions as I am the organiser of the event. I’ll have to join someone else’s life class to practise. Ironic, I know. Because I don’t sketch the nude as much I’d like to I set myself a weekly goal of producing a watercolour that I can later use to promote my life drawing classes.
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It’s always difficult to know when to stop painting a watercolour. Maybe I should have stopped already after the first wash. It doesn’t matter, it was just a sketch, I was playing with some paper I haven’t used for years, Fabriano Artistico /S, it’s really difficult to paint on. The blending of colours is difficult. It’s not paper I like but I have lots of it so I’ll just have to enjoy it even if it’s not a favourite. Which do you like best, the finished painting or the halfway stage version? Let me know in the comments. Cheers 🙂
It’s true, I rarely sketch nudes these days which is ironic as I run a life drawing class every Thursday even during the pandemic. My problem is that I don’t have time to go to other life drawing classes and right now I don’t actually want to physically be in a classroom anyway. This is why I stream my own life drawing classes. It means extra work for me as a host so sketching has had to take a back seat. I’m not complaining too much. I get a lot enjoyment out of running my class and I can sketch nudes anytime using photo resources that I have bought throughout the years. Actually, I think I am just making excuses. There is nothing preventing me from sketching or painting watercolour nudes, it’s up to me, I decide.
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I have started painting nudes again. It’s a real challenge, human skin-tones are so fine, so delicate. I am enjoying it though. It takes a lot longer for me to complete a nude, I’m not used to that. I don’t really have the patience for it so I spread the painting over several days, I work for an hour or two each day until it is finished. This is the best way for me to work right now, I hope I can improve my concentration with the next watercolours that I plan to paint in the coming weeks. Nude: 36 x 26 cm
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This is for those of you who enjoy life drawing, here is my current sketchbook. I normally just take photos of my work but this time I thought I’d present my drawings on video with a little voice over. Have a nice weekend! David
I was life drawing yesterday using watercolours, I try my best to capture the pose in 5 minutes or whatever the decided time is. I of course run out of time which is okay as everyone does.
I have gotten into the habit of playing with these sketches the morning after, I start the day with a strong cup of coffee and I try to improve the quick watercolours I did the night before. It’s fun and just like kids I learn a lot by just playing around.
My name is David Meldrum, I love painting watercolours. Another passion I have is life drawing, I run a class called Meldrum Kroki. I was born in Ireland but since 1990 I have lived in Stockholm, Sweden.
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