Recently I have been giving a lot of thought as to why I like so much life drawing and what I want to say with my art.
For sure there is something almost magical happening when you manage to represent accurately someone in front of you, in life drawing class, with some basic tools like paper and a pencil, in a race against the clock, but I think one of the main reasons for me is that the models we see are representative of what people look like in “real life” in all their diversity and beauty.
Physical beauty as an ideal is a construct that changes over time in the history of art, but each period tends to have one singular unique model of what beauty is, and often that model is very difficult or impossible to attain.
The reality is that beauty can be found in a diversity of models, there should not be one unique model of what beauty can be.
So this is what I want to do when representing the female body in my art:
I want to offer an alternative to representation of women in art by celebrating the true beauty and diversity of real bodies of all ages and shapes.
Like most women, I have struggled with body image most of my life, being constantly told I was too thin as a child and teenager and not thin enough as an older woman. So I want to represent the female body in a non sexual, objectifying or exploitative way and challenge the mainstream narrative that women are only worth our attention when adhering to certain stereotypes of youth, thinness and perfection.
Real people in all their diversity and imperfection deserve to be the subject of fine art and I would like my art to help people, and in particular women feel confident, proud, valued and accepted as they are. It is a different perspective to look at art about women that is made by women artists, with a definition of beauty that are not only dictated by the male gaze.
I work from drawings made in life drawing classes with inspiring and diverse models.
I also like that the nude is the only way in art to represent the human condition outside of a time or cultural frame, out of time, if you ignore contemporary body modifications like tattoos and piercing. That is why my first series of print is maned “Timeless”.
I also like to add patterns in my compositions that could look like fabric designs or crochet or something knitted as a nod to traditional feminine crafts that are often thought as being too decorative and not as respectable as fine art.
Recently I have been thinking how I could let any woman experience a modelling session with the opportunity to pose in a safe, non judgmental and relaxed environment and see herself through the eyes of 2 artists. In this case, our models can choose to wear everyday clothes, sportswear, formal wear or even a costume . I partnered with long time friend and artist Anna du Bois to offer the “Perfect just as you are” modelling sessions. You can read more about it here.