New Figures

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I was juried into the big Western Masters show in Great Falls, Montana in March. I would like to have a new body of work to bring there, so last week I set about making 5 new modelling stands for 1/3 life size figures. Next I hired a model for the weekend from my figure modelling class at the University. She was a no-show so Elizabeth stood for me. I have been refining the process of creating a wire armature, resolving how to create the top-line of the torso. The traditional top-line will jut out at the clavicle and shoulders and cause all sorts of problems, so I worked from Elizabeth and scratched my head a bit and came up with a plan that will work well with my students at the University, and will work well for me in the future.

After measuring the armature and setting up the wire structure, Elizabeth took a twisting impossible pose. I skinned it with clay, and for something new made the wire follow the skeletal structure- although the Femur was too straight and the trochanter too close in, which threw things off later. Really the wire is so far inside the body, and does not follow skeletal structure, that it is better seen as having a limited relationship to the skeleton.

The pose is a nice challenge for me, as she can only hold it for a few minutes at a time and can go back and forth into it for about an hour. This means I have to know what I see, rather than rely on looking- and I have to work fast and make it count. A big challenge is to find the most dynamic aspects of the pose, capture them, and then work to keep them as she tires and they disappear.

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