Left: Cruela DeVille ©2008 Justine Limpus Parish. This is a recent drawing from a Drawing Club session, made by fashion illustrator and author of Drawing the Fashion Body, Ms. Parish. Click the image to see an enlargement.
I think figure drawing is an important component of drawing practice, but in L.A. “The Drawing Club” provides an arguably more essential drawing situation: clothed life models. (I mean, really, it has been a long time since I was asked to draw a naked person in a work-related situation, but clothed figures, that’s something different.)
Anyone interested in figurative drawing should take a look at this site. After each themed drawing session (where the model might be dressed as a pirate, Santa, or a fictional or cartoon character like Cruela DeVille) the artwork from attending artists is posted on the blog. (To see past sessions scroll down on the blog page until you get to the bottom of the right-hand column where the Archives are listed).
Artists working in a variety of styles, using all sorts of media, attack the same theme with inspiring and wildly different results that range from realism to manga. Top illustrators in Los Angeles attend this drawing group, and you get to look over their shoulders.
Twin Cities based-artist Ken Avidor attended a session while visiting the West Coast. He has been trying to start a group like this in Minneapolis. I heard from someone else that a local bar has started a clothed-model drawing session, but I can’t find any of the details. If anyone knows of such a thing in the Twin Cities please write in and let me know!
If you are looking for a traditional life drawing group you should contact Lisa Pfeiffer (firstname.lastname@example.org) who organizes several groups, as well as a multi-pose session, in the Twin Cities.
In the meantime, if you are looking for inspiration to get you back to sketching practice, check out the work of Ms. Parish and the other L.A. participants at the Drawing Club.