Thursday, June 12, 2008

Memorial for Barbara Bradley

A few photos from the memorial... Barbara was the mentor who challenged me to always push myself and helped me with some straight forward drawing technique advice. However, in her "technique" there was a melding of "content" as well. For her, I think the process of drawing people and appreciating people were one in the same. Her "opinion" about the model didn't necessarily have to be a grand narrative, but could be about visual design of their features and/or clothing. In drawing other people, I think she felt somehow it made the world a little better - taking time to look closely at other people suspends judgment for a moment. If you too quickly make an assumption about how a model appears, the drawing suffers from being too generalized. By overriding one's own conception of what the model should look like for a moment, and studying the other person, a certain level of connectedness occurs - in some cases, random models unknowingly being sketched sometimes become aware of their being observed. In an age when people interminably have their hands glued to their ears in phone conversations, a little less inwardness and a little more mindfulness of others couldn't be a bad thing. At any rate, after some successes working for WDFA and later teaching for the AAU, we were somewhat colleagues, but obviously she had the much greater well to draw from and was the "mother hen" as she was referred to.

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