Diana Probst, Cambridge Artist

Sketching at the Sidgewick

Young man in fighting pose, shield-arm outstretchedI have the good fortune to live close to a museum of casts, some of which are valuable antiques in their own right. Casts do not move, and it is easy to select one with an interesting pose or anatomy that calls out for study. Last time I was there, I drew two pieces, both in pencil, as preparation for line drawings which will come when I have simplified the shadows and highlights without simplifying the pose. Note the larger studies of the hands in the white space. I will have to reduce even the complexities of the fingers to something that can be managed in ink.

I also have to decide whether to replace the sword and shield which are missing in the cast. That is probably going to be a no, as I think the shape of the shield would be distracting. In bronze, it works well and would be dramatic. In marble I suspect it could not hold its own weight. On paper, it would just look overbalanced, even as a relatively thin ellipse. The hands currently fill in the blank space well, but it is likely to look stark and empty when the ink lines are realised, and I may fill it with a stylised hint at a rock face, or the like.