one of the things that makes van a great model, is that even his more relaxed poses are dynamic, and interesting to draw. someone sitting in a chair and staring straight ahead can be a bit boring to look at, though certainly good practice. unless you're a master of the craft, it's really, really hard to say something interesting when painting someone you don't know, who's just... sitting. and it gets even harder when you're working with a model who just goes flat when posing. with that kind of model, there's a tendency to drop all expression or life from the face, and present a mask; all the life and energy that the model shows as they're walking around the room disappears the moment they take a pose. at least for me, not being anywhere near a master, it's difficult to find a connection with the model and bring out anything of who they are, when that happens.
this one was a lot of fun to paint. van kept cracking me up, because he was staring right at me as i was working. he always takes fantastic poses, and gets into character for each of them. it was a little hard to take him seriously, with his I'm Going To Stab You Now pose -- he's such a laid-back guy. but look at the difference in energy that van shows in this, and some of the other ones a few weeks back -- it's amazing, isn't it?
speaking of energy, i should muster up some. onward.