Friday, December 10, 2010
First posted June 3, 2009
Tonight I am modeling in the round for 3 hours in front of between 15 – 25 artists. The session consists of a total of about 50 “gesture” poses lasting between 1 minute to 5 minutes each, so by the end of this evening, depending on how many artists show up, there will be about 1,000 new drawings of me in existence. That’s part of the fun of modeling.
But before I get into muse mode, I need to take care of the practical aspects so that I can perform unencumbered by any trifling concerns. By that I mean, I need to make sure I have what I need, including being physically ready, having a few pose ideas in mind, and making sure to bring my “kit”.
My kit is a simple bag with a few items that every model should have when posing for artists. My kit includes a lightweight robe, a sheet, a pair of ankle socks or slippers, a hand towel, a water bottle, a small snack, a digital camera, and my cell phone.
The robe is to wear around the studio before the session and during breaks. I like a light weight robe because I have to carry it back and forth to the studio. The ankle socks or slippers are to keep the bottoms of my feet from becoming blackened by the ever-present charcoal dust that covers the floors of art studios. They also keep my tootsies warm on the colder days. The hand towel is for wiping my brow, neck, back, or whatever part of me is sweating.
Posing is often physically demanding, and it is good to keep a towel handy. This is especially true when doing short gesture poses, where it is normal to strike open poses and dramatic postures that can often be very physically taxing.
The sheet is for covering the platform. Posing platforms are typically covered in a carpet that has been stood, sat, knelt, crouched, and laid upon by several other nude models. A covering sheet is one way to help keep the environment clean for yourself and them. Choose a sheet that is light enough to carry easily, yet strong enough to resist tearing. Try for one that is soft enough to feel comfortable against your skin, yet rough enough to provide you with some friction so your feet or hands don’t slip out from under you during a pose.
The snack is just a granola bar, or a banana, or something similarly small. I usually have it during the first break to refresh my energy. Keep it small and light to avoid any undue activity in your digestive tract.
I keep the water bottle by the posing stand in case I feel thirsty or dry during the session. A quick sip is all you need to refresh yourself, but keep it small! You want to avoid filling your bladder and having to hold in a pee for 29 minutes of a 30 minute pose.
The camera is a handy item to have for recording your position when you are doing a multi-session pose, and the cell phone is to keep in touch to see if I need to pickup any bread and milk on the way home.
With a bit of prep, a few pose ideas in mind, and your “kit” in hand, it’s easy to relax, focus your attention on being the muse, enjoy yourself, and become a work of art.