Collaborative Sound, Draw & Pose


by Irene Lafferty
by Kathy Dutton

A fusion of art forms, experimental creativity, and a healing space.

Meditation circle to begin; focus and calm.

Slowly moving as a group, in a circle

Like flowers growing towards the sun.

by Kathy Dutton
by Steve Carey
by Philip Copestake
by Irene Lafferty
by Irene Lafferty
by Kathy Dutton

A pregnant woman and a midwife pose together.

A large paper everyone draws on

Outlines of women on top of each other, coloured in.

by Kathy Dutton
by Kathy Dutton
Women’s collaborative drawing led by Kathy Dutton
Men and women collaborative drawing led by Kathy Dutton

Playing instruments we didn’t know the names of

Spread out on a picnic rug to sample.

A group symphony of sound, and a tableau of nudity.

by Philip Copestake
Women making soundscape

Here is the women’s collaborative soundscape, led by Sarah Kent.


Some feedback from the women’s session

“I can see retrospectively that my belief and trust in myself got totally wrapped up into the dynamic of my relationship with my ex. And I had lost my faith in myself. I didn’t think my body was mine anymore. When shit hit the fan it was my body that I blamed and victimised. When I gave myself permission to process what had happened, I had the revelation that I don’t exist to please anyone else. When I posed for Spirited Bodies I felt liberated. To be naked, without sexual purpose, was the ultimate declaration of self. This is ME. This body is mine.” Ellie.

“I really enjoyed the day, key thoughts:
– very alternative
– open and welcoming
– a bit experimental which is probably not for everyone e.g. Joint drawing was a bit 1960s art ‘happening’.
– the music and movement component was interesting and Challenging to draw.
– I enjoyed the modelling experience and felt very comfortable. I guess I also realised how comfortable and at home i felt in my body and pregnant. it felt therapeutic in some ways.” Philippa.

Here is the mixed collaborative soundscape, again led by Sarah Kent.

Kathy Dutton writes of the day

“#drawing #live capturing the essence of continuous movement #observing each second and putting it onto paper #softly drifting into sound and seeing only. #spiritedbodies

1 minute #drawing capturing the #curve of the body and a #moments #movement #spiritedbodies

During the event ….I felt our minds connected in a way that made it easy to work in silence…with only the sound and our intention. The circle at the start and the spiral within the meditation rippled into our consciousness subtle yet present… it surprised me how a few people drew the spiral we connected with in the visualisation
The soundscapes reached into us and made us melt into energy… connected by the sound into each moment, and the intense heat of that day.”
And here is Steve Ritter’s blog post about the mixed session (for a more accurate description of what happened!)

Communicating a Pose: from Model to Artist (to canvas)

My practical application of life drawing techniques is pretty ropey. I’ve heard and seen a lot; but done – there I lack. When instructing others on how to draw me I explain – “Convey my essence, what does the pose feel like? Express that with your charcoal marks!”

Today I observed the communication process again. My typical poses are not often like naturalism, I mean mainly my shorter poses (less than half an hour). They are abstract, geometric, dynamic, concerned with balance and not obviously expressive of an emotion. They are about form. As I shift from angular shape to perpendicular groove, it is my body that tells me which way to go. Or rather it just does it. Today I saw/felt an artist watching me first, before he put pencil to paper. Taking it in – ‘what does it mean?’

I looked at myself: balancing on the sides of my feet, legs crossed, back leaning slightly forward and arms out front about belly level, hands together in an almost begging fashion. My head was tilted up and to the left. I thought: “There is nothing obvious which I am telling you, at least not with your left brain. So best not to analyse too much.” I was right all along. Feel the essence, don’t think about it. Take time to absorb the information given before your eyes, your senses. Then translate to paper. Measure by all means; but let the charcoal interpret the meaning, which in any case never need be clear. Not in linear terms at least. It may strike on another plane.

by the artist in question, Joe Goldman at Idun Eustace’s class (Wimbledon Art Studios); longer pose

Next week we have another meeting for new models; this time at Battersea Arts Centre on Wednesday 19th September, 7-9pm.

Also we have life modelling workshops lined up where participants get to try drawing each other as well as us. The emphasis is not on being able to draw, rather on seeing what the model is from the artist’s point of view. These are on Wednesday evenings of 26th September and 3rd October at Battersea Library. This is great preparation for our event on October 20. Do get in touch to book a place, there is a charge of £10. Drawing materials provided.

Pretty in Portobello

We really admired the artwork from this event

There is a lot more to follow. Truly, artists had a very free style in Ladbroke Grove and we salute that. Just 5 models finally made focus a little clearer, and me being one of them made working out poses with the group nice and easy.

some images from Spirited Bodies in Mortlake

We didn’t take any photos at this event which some people missed, but of course there was lots of artwork

Models posed mostly individually to begin with, and after the break they were more connected, in fact in tableaux suggesting some scene. There was a naked funeral, a naked wedding, a party… these only lasted for half an hour, so artists were pretty pushed to get it all down with 7 or 8 figures in each group. Some lovely abstract work too. I put some other pictures in the ‘Images’ page, but couldn’t figure out how not to get the new images muddled up with ones from last year… another time. Plus there’s lots more uploading to do. Just wanted to start this as I know how much people really want to see work from the recent event. Thank you to superb new & experienced models alike, they were a fantastic group, some sharing experience and others learning very quickly. Even for the pros though there is the novelty of being en group. Clifford, a seasoned pro pointed out that it is a very different experience to being alone as you are not supposed to be the star but instead part of an ensemble creating a striking pose together. Very true.

More anon.

Spirited Bodies, Journey Model

Spirited Bodies 2 was a beautiful success and many thanks are due to all who made it so; the Hesketh Hubbard artists, the brave new models and the splendid SB team!

In the pub, talk turned to the idea of a ‘journey model’, whereby some of our keen new models may come together over a period of time perhaps monthly and model again, charting developments.

With invitations from other galleries this can evolve into a multi-layered experience. There will be a time when the models may attempt to draw each other.