During the summer of 2019 we pioneered our first ever body positive life drawing events for teenagers! These mainly took place weekly over the summer holidays in Croydon, as well as an event at the Barbican in conjunction with their ‘Lee Krasner Living Colour’ exhibition.

Real Life ~ body positive life drawing for teenagers

Sir Philip Game Centre in Croydon pioneered a series of special body-positive life drawing sessions for teenagers during the summer holidays of 2019.

Real Life‘ workshops take place in a safe environment, giving young people a chance to draw diverse natural human figures while at the same time talking about body image issues such as how we see ourselves and others.

Life drawing – the practice of drawing the nude human figure – has been an art tradition for thousands of years, and has increased in popularity during recent times. It offers an opportunity to look closely at real bodies as part of a creative process, and also provides a healthy alternative to the many filtered and airbrushed images of bodies we see every day in the media and online. Drawing the natural human form in all its variety can help teens appreciate their own wonderful uniqueness and accept themselves the way they are.

Weekly workshops

Sessions took place on Friday evenings, between 6pm and 8pm, from late July to August. Teenagers practised drawing a different model every week over a period of six weeks. Workshops are relaxed but structured to help build up confidence through simple, fun exercises. There are some tips on drawing, but young people are encouraged to find their own freedom of expression and style.

Unusually for a life drawing class, the model speaks with the young people about their own experiences and how they have overcome body image concerns. Young people are able to ask questions and share their own thoughts. There is also some quiet time simply to focus on drawing and think about the issues raised.

Spirited Bodies

Esther of Spirited Bodies said: “Life drawing can be especially helpful to today’s social media generation. The life room is an excellent place for all students, not just art students, because the body is accepted and appreciated in an open, healthy, non-sexualised way.

“Studying the human form is an important foundation in drawing, which is very useful for those looking to pursue fine art, design, architecture or animation. It’s also a great way to learn about anatomy and can benefit anyone with an interest in medicine and therapies.”

Sessions were open to teenagers, aged 14 to 19 years-old, across the academic and vocational spectrum. Drawing materials provided.

The sessions were very affordable, costing just £5 each.

If you are interested in booking Spirited Bodies events for teenagers, please get in touch – contact Esther at info.spiritedbodies@gmail.com

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