The Model Relationship

         Cont'e on strathmore, 4 ply bristol board; this is a new style for me. I'm experimenting. Beautiful renderings of beautiful women just do not do it for me any longer. I'm hoping that an interesting technique leads to an interesting drawing, not just another portrait of a beautiful woman. 
          I've worked with some very inspiring models, who have been even more interesting to know as individuals. I haven't learnt yet how to capture their personal story with just cont'e or charcoal; a task that may be impossible. The beauty of working from a live model is that we, the model and myself, get to know one another which over the years has become a major factor in all my work. both painting and drawing. Making a picture is easy, making a work of art is hard. Art is relating a feeling, or passion through the materials we use. A story, told, but unheard, is what a work of art is when the viewer doesn't totally relate to it. I wrap myself in the presence of my model, letting her presence guide my hand. A light touch, a heavy stroke, a muted color; are all brought about by how I saw the model. Even though I pay my models, I still consider it a privilege to have them in my studio posing for me. To hear about their lives outside the studio brightens my palette, makes my hand more sure, and pushes me to dream up more personal concepts. 
          An artist friend asked me why I use such expensive frames on certain paintings, when I could get away with lesser ones. I said, "It is out of respect for what went into those paintings."