Day two started in the same way as the remaining three days will start. No one is allowed to touch their work for the first ten minutes. This is when your eyes are at their freshest. The previous night you may think you were quite clear what was right or wrong with your sculpture. It is only in the morning that you can spot perhaps that the overall shape of the head needs some further work. Or you spot that the neck hasn’t got that distinctive forward thrust of the model Dave. Drawing is allowed. Standing at the opposite end of the room is vital – this means positioning your sculpture the far-side of the model and taking the ‘long view’. If you line up the views so you can compare directly what you have sculpted and the actual model you sometimes get one of those eureka experiences. Another clincher can be drawing the profile of your sculpture, then superimposing a drawing directly from the model. Then comparing the two.
The rest of the morning was spent perfecting the side-profiles before starting to build-up in 3-dimensions. With a very productive first day, the students made rapid progress. We did some close looking at the front profile of Dave’s head – in essence, if you had to draw one continuous line how would you capture the head from the front (including the ears, skull, shoulders, shape of face). We also started looking at the many profiles between the face-on and side profiles – these can really help with the difficult aspects of portraiture (eg getting the shape of the brow, the eye socket, the cheek, the chin and so on). And lots of talking about the skull. This culminated in getting Dave to squat down on a child’s chair so we could all look down onto the the top of his skull. In turn, each student’s portrait was brought down to the same level. Interestingly there weren’t many nasty surprises – some great looking skulls. So at end of day two I am pretty impressed at their progress and levels of concentration and determination, even in the face of weariness. Day three about to commence.