When you need something to draw, you can always try punching a pillow.  It worked for Durer.  He punched a pillow and drew it.  Punched it again and drew that.  They made charming drapery studies.

If you compare the still lifes of Cezanne with their heaped up folds to his landscapes of Mont Sainte Victoire it soon becomes obvious that the two have much in common.  Cezanne’s still lifes and his pictures of the mountain are versions of the same idea.

Sometimes I go on a drapery spree and make oodles of drawings of drapery.  Drapery turns out to be very expressive.  It’s filled with moods — like clouds.  No psychological depths exist that cannot be summed up in some manner by folded textile.

Even now revisiting my drawings made after Picasso’s Corina Romeu, I have to admit how much her hair is like this drapery study above.  And it is not just a consequence of my personality and my drawing.  It was in Picasso’s version too.  He was just as much swayed by the effects of gravity upon cloth in shaping ideas of dimension and form.

It all started with the Greeks.  They really were onto something.

[Top of the post:  Cloth mountain (drapery study), by Aletha Kuschan]

4 thoughts on “When you need something to draw

  1. A very nice study.

    I’m doing a 72″ painting of a woman draped in a bed sheet. Oh my, soooo many folds. I am completely sick of painting folds.

  2. wrjones,
    Come on — stiff upper lip. After all, somebody has to do it. It’s goes with the badge. It’s part of being an artist!
    Good luck! Bon courage! Hang in there!

  3. Ah! But perhaps you should give it a try … what you discover is that you are not painting the same thing over and over!
    Thanks for your comment.

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