This is a scene from my Tuesday night portrait painting class. The model is reclining, and the painting is midway through the first of four two hour sessions. The medium is oils. Viewers with eagle eyes will perhaps see a thin brush poised on the easel.
I don’t know how people model for art classes. I tried it for ten minutes and found myself wanting to laugh at nothing in particular. I think it is because the tutor has to explain to each pupil why they have not quite got your chin right and that your nose should be longer etc.
I have been enjoying this class – even more than the still life oil painting course I did before it. The people who paint portraits are more sociable than the ones who paint still lifes (or should it be ‘lives’ – I don’t really know). I find it relaxing because with painting one does not have to think up as many ideas.
I don’t know whether I will do another course in Leigh on Sea next term. On Tuesday some youths in a car pulled up as I was walking back to the station and started to ask me questions in silly voices. All very funny, but intimidating when you are on your own armed only with a sketchbook, a small tube of burnt umber and a nearly empty bottle of turps. This is the third incident involving threatening groups of youths in cars in the twenty five weeks I have been going. I do not feel that safe in this part of Essex after dark, but perhaps I need to toughen up a bit. I’m sure it is very safe compared to many places in the world. And armed with my tube of burnt umber I could probably take on most adversaries anyhow.