Thanks to Ben Barry, I heard about a neat event at the National Portrait Gallery being produced by an organization called Allwalks. A number of activities were offered, including a live drawing session, and of course I signed up.
All Walks promotes diversity in fashion images, and so the model we were drawing was a gorgeous, curvy girl named Lucy, with hot red hair and a slamming body in a tight green dress. Drawing her was delightful – this girl was born to model, a subtle cock of the hip and she was instantly a fashion image. So inspiring.
The instructor was also excellent – Sue Dray was brief and enthusiastic and spot on with her suggestions. She encouraged us to start with pure shape and colour and then bring in the linear stuff as an afterthought – a tip that I took to heart and was pleased with how well it worked. I rarely use chalk pastels, so it took me out of my comfort zone and even though we only had time to do about half a dozen drawings, I was surprised and pleased at the results.
That wasn’t even the highlight. I didn’t know to expect it (this was probably a good thing or I would have been too nervous to draw), but the man I consider to be this century’s greatest fashion illustrator, David Downton, was in the house and offered his comments after the session… DAVID DOWNTON specifically pointed out and complimented my work.
I introduced myself to him and awkwardly blathered something, and it was truly a life highlight.