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Fear & Clothing


Last night I went to my first figure drawing class, and I was way more nervous than the model.

For the most part I’ve been doing doodles. I do some still life objects and copy from pictures and books. But figure drawing is the big time.  There are real artists sitting beside you – people who can draw from life way better than you, and they may or may not be part of the Ministry of Encouragement to which I have belonged for the last 3-4 years.

I got there late after work and found a spot.  I nodded at the other participants, already sketching, and, forcing myself not to look at anyone else’s work, started to scribble.

Once you start to scribble, nothing else – if you’re amazing or a hack, if your neighbor is Rembrandt, if you remembered to tell your husband the class ends at 7:30 instead of 7:00 – matters.  All that matters is the pen and the model.

And when the class facilitator called ‘Time’ I did peek at the other student’s work, and I do suck compared to most of them (really – one of the drawers could have been recreating a masterpiece).  But as it happens, most people who are as addicted to drawing as you are, are active members of the ministry of encouragement, whether or not they know it.  When the next pose began, fear was gone and only one thought remained –

I need to find more time to draw.  Anybody got an extra hour in the day I could borrow?