Stories & Articles

Become A Life Model

Vanessa de Largie | Topic Media | April 17, 2012

Looking for liberation? Looking to feel empowered about your own body? Looking for a more obscure way to make cash? Looking to end up on the wall of a gallery?

If you answered ‘yes’ to one or more of these questions, well then perhaps life modelling is for you.

Dating back to the 13th century, sketching from life was an established practice.

Life Drawing (also known as figure drawing) is the study of the human form in various positions.

The life model may be standing, seated, nude, partially clothed or in a more unusual and artistic pose.

You may be posing for one artist at a studio or for a number of artists at a school. It is entirely up to you and your boundaries.

I have worked as a life model sporadically over the years and totally recommend the experience.

I suggested to a girlfriend of mine who was feeling negative about her weight to do a few sessions as a life model. She thought I was trying to be comedic but I managed to convince her to give it a shot.

It was thrilling to receive her call after the life drawing class finished. ‘I feel beautiful Ness, I love my curves today.’

Life modelling is not about being a cat walk model or being a size 6. Often it’s preferred that you are voluptuous, one only has to look back in art history.

It’s kind of liberating standing there nude, like the last layer being peeled back, no longer anything to hide behind. There is also a sense of feeling proud of your assets and your imperfections. It’s the flaws in life which give it substance, art is no different.

But don’t think life modelling is a walk in the park. It is physical, it requires stillness for long periods.

It requires you to be uninhibited, even though you know, your little voluptuous pot belly is in a ‘pudge’ for the world to see.

Life modelling isn’t ageist or sexist. Life modelling isn’t about having what society considers the ‘perfect body.’

Life modelling to a degree is – ‘what is.’ It’s about being.

If you feel a little daunted by diving straight in, why not grab a friend and attend a life modelling workshop at Princes Hill Community Centre.

You can get further info about the workshops and life modelling opportunities by visiting The Life Model Society.

Alternatively Brighton Arts Society are often looking for life models.

If posing for an art class is not you, respected artists often need models to sit for them. Type ‘life modelling melbourne’ into google.

I wish you well on your life modelling journey and congratulate you for being brave and bold.