Model’s Eye View

Here’s my question of the day: What . . . the hell . . . happened . . . to the SUMMER?????? August has come and gone, Labor Day Weekend has come and gone, the Burning Man Festival has come and gone, and now it’s back to regular, steady, responsible work mode. (Ok, I’m not sure about the “responsible” part 😆 ). I seem to recall lying on a Nantucket beach just 14 days ago, and now I’m lying on a modeling platform in the middle of the New York Studio School’s Drawing Marathon. Except now I am sans striped bikini and instead, I am nude. The only semblance of said bikini exists solely in my tan lines.

So it’s back to work, and starting with the Drawing Marathon is like gorging on a five course meal after a period of fasting. Your digestive organs aren’t ready to handle the quantity! Marathon hours are long, rigorous, and test the endurance of both students and models alike.

However, a really cool surprise greeted us yesterday as we entered the big drawing room at 9 AM sharp. In preparation for the Marathon, the school adorned the ceiling with pretty baby blue umbrellas, hanging upside down from strings stretched from wall to wall. May I just say that it looks awesome?! The Studio School is always trying out new things to create interesting effects, light and shapes. 20 blue umbrellas definitely do the trick.

There are three models – myself, Stanley, and Roxy – all posed reclining on a huge platform draped with fabrics, directly underneath the blue umbrellas. I am reclined on my back, and I get to stare up at the umbrellas all day, for eight hours a day. It’s not bad! I could think of a lot worse things to stare at all day in a workplace. It’s really quite pretty, and because there are windows in the ceiling of the studio, the light from outside filters through and illuminates the blue of the umbrellas. The effect is lovely, and it does a fine job of distracting us models from our cramping muscles and throbbing spines.

Here’s my view for the next ten days:

Since the class goes from morning until 6 PM, I watch the light change dramatically as the sun arcs over us from east to west. It really alters the whole look of the setup, since light is a very powerful thing. I’m guessing it must be an aggravation for the artists. But for me, gazing from below, it’s my own personal “Rhapsody in Blue”. And isn’t it a good thing I have Gershwin in my iPod? I’ll listen to it on the train during my morning commute to get myself in the mood 🙂 .

6 thoughts on “Model’s Eye View

  1. Ron says:

    Maybe the artist had you in mind when his did this picture:
    Or I could sit naked in an upside down umbrella

    You’ll find your fortune’s fallin’ all over the town
    Be sure that your umbrella is upside down

  2. Josefin says:

    *** Claudia ***
    Looking at all the blue umbrellas
    reminding me of the fall and of the cloudy skies
    but also about the blue sky behind
    it’s like life
    there are always light behind the clouds
    and the darker clouds
    the brighter light will break through : )

    Take good care on your model sessions
    from Josefin

  3. forestrat says:


    The umbrellas are really cool.

    I can’t imagine holding still for that long. It is not the kind of thing that just anyone can do.

    I like to sit beneath forest trees on sunny days, look skyward, and watch the leaves light up. It won’t be long now and the trees will trade their old green for some firey reds and oranges. I’ve tried to photograph the leaves several times without success – shooting into the sun even through leaves is tough on a camera. No doubt I’ll be trying it again this fall.


  4. artmodel says:

    Ron, thanks for the link, I loved it!
    And it didn’t occur to me how perfectly apropos those lyrics are from “Pennies from Heaven”. I always liked that song, ever since I was a kid.


  5. artmodel says:


    I am convinced that you have prescient abilites! You are both a sculptor AND a clairvoyant.
    I was just about to publish a new post with a picture I took recently. It’s so close to your comments that it’s almost eerie. (but in a good way!)

    When you see it, you’ll understand.


  6. artmodel says:


    Definitely try to get that shot! It would be stunning. I can see it in my mind, with the brilliant fall colors. But yes, that must be difficult from a photographic standpoint.

    Glad you like the umbrellas. The upstairs studio at the school is also holding a Drawing Marathon class. On a break I went up there to visit, and they have pink umbrellas!


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