First Online Class went well !

Well Online Life Drawing is not the same as Life Drawing, but at least it offers the same opportunity to spend a few hours just Drawing!

And as I have stated at least one hundred times, drawing the human figure is not the same as drawing a bowl of fruit.

But I am really, really pleased to announce our first session went down really well! I was expecting lots of technical issues but except for a few glitches we were problem free.

I would like to thank each and every participant, I was warned you had to silence everybody because otherwise everyone talks at the same tins. But NO. When we started a session nearly everyone silenced their own microphone, I didn’t even ask. Even after years of Life Drawing I am still amazed I have never had to request silence, it’s an automatic thing. Last night I had to check several times people were still there it was so quiet. So thanks again. And of course to Diana, who not only did the session but had worked with me beforehand on poses. We are not used to this type of work yet, it takes a lot of preparation.

Some people have sent me images of their work. Any more would be appreciated

We will run the class again next week. Moe details posted shortly !

Next week a costumed model!!

Adam was our model for the week, and several of the newer people mentioned they had never drawn a man before!
I normally take photos of peoples favourite drawings, but I forgot!!

However I did take photos of people working.

This is good in a way, because if you look carefully you will note that not only are drawings different, the way we draw is different.

Next week there is a costumed model…we are all very excited!!

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The Sea of Trees

Art ManchesterThe most popular place in the world to end it all is the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco. The vertiginous 75-metre drop ensures most jumpers die on impact with the water below; drowning and hypothermia claim the rest. Britain’s own Beachy Head, where Phil Daniels’ scooter met its symbolic end in Quadrophenia, comes in third. But it’s the silver medal holder that’s the focus of a new film, funded in part by the New York Foundation of the Arts.

Art ManchesterThe Aokigahara forest covers an area of roughly thirty-five square kilometres at the base of Mount Fuji. The trees crowd together in high density, obscuring sunlight and wind. This, along with a lack of fauna within its confines, gives rise to a crepuscular calm, an unearthly stillness that resonates throughout the forest. The area has demonic associations in Japanese mythology, and over the years has steadily built its reputation as a ‘good place’ to die. In one year alone, 108 suicides were recorded in the forest. The Japanese government has since ceased publishing figures in an attempt to downplay its morbid fame.

Into these gothic surroundings steps independent artist and film-maker, Joshua Zucker-Pluda. “Can a landscape have a soul? Can past events leave a psychic impression on a terrain[…]?” These questions are his jumping-off point for a haunting piece of experimental documentary film-making, reminiscent of Werner Herzog or Terrence Malick, treading/blurring a line between environmental psychology and paranormal investigation.

The Sea of Trees – Trailer from hamletpowpowpow on Vimeo.

Zucker-Pluda first came to my attention through his Roadside Picnic podcast, an intermittently updated ethereal journey through the abstract outer reaches of modern music. Since its first episode in 2005, the podcast has built up a cult following and spawned a series of limited edition vinyl box sets titled A Room Forever. A sense of otherworldliness pervades every aspect of the project, from the choice of sounds to the dark, minimal layout of the website and the accompanying photos, each image showcasing Zucker-Pluda’s preoccupation with landscape and the ability of his lens to make the familiar appear strange.

This aesthetic has been expanded upon in his latest film project The Sea of Trees, which takes its name from the Japanese nickname for Aokigahara. The film, which has received funding from the New York Foundation of the Arts (NYFA), the New York State Council of the Arts (NYSCA) and the Jerome Foundation, features some startling footage of the forest itself, mixed with interviews and anecdotes from numerous sources. The film is currently in post-production, having successfully raised the funds via a concerted campaign on, and from the looks of the sample footage released so far it’s shaping up to be a breath-taking piece of film-making.
Sea of Trees footage on Vimeo