Nude in Charcoal

The first lesson my Dad taught me was how to look at an object and see the light and shadow. I had the extreme pleasure yesterday of stealing a break from my busy fall schedule to meet up with my dear friend and incredibly talented fine artist, Michelle Dunaway.  Michelle called me up last week to let me know she’s back in town teaching a drawing & painting workshop and asked if I would photograph her for American Artist magazine.

Best of all, she offered me the opportunity to sit in on the class and draw!  Now, I haven’t picked up a piece of charcoal since 1992, but I was so excited!  Like a kid at Christmas kind of excited.  Michelle took me yesterday to buy supplies, and after taking loads of photos for her, I sat down at an easel bench and a blank piece of paper.  Michelle wandered over to give me a quick demo on drawing 101, and I began some 5 minute sketches.  The above picture was done in maybe 6 or 7 minutes. I had such fun with the process – very liberating.  I’ll be going to Michelle’s class over the next few days after my morning shoots, and will post pics of Michelle and her incredible work soon.

In other news, today is my 1st Anniversary! The Studio + Gallery, Christa Meola Pictures, is 1 Year Old!  The Grand Opening party last year was a blast, and today I’ll have to celebrate with a cupcake, candle, some friends, some photos, and a lot of nude drawing!