I have worked with models many times. In art school, on commercial assignments. Something always stands out in each of these. That is how easy it is for some people to model and how few the number of those people who try it are able to do it. I don’t mean make money at modeling. I mean that it is rare that a person can add to the process of art, or even commerce. Most of the time the work works around the model. In commerce we called them temperamental hangars. In art school the requirement for a model is less look than facility. And endurance. Hold that pose for minutes.
Art schools need many types, after all an apple isn’t a bowl of fruit. So too, a thin athletic model isn’t enough to learn to shade or markup the differences between edge and tone. Where and how texture is drawn… in short the topics of the craft and skills of art.
Successful models have courage. This goes beyond being self confident or assured. It means being able to understand how to fit, to be able, like a dancer, to remember the smallest adjustments you have tried and recall them without thinking. It is a skill that comes with practice. The confidence and courage comes from something else…
One simple example is this photo from SFAI. The school used to have models in the courtyard almost every day for “open sessions.” They don’t now, so don’t expect this situation to greet you upon your visit. Times have changed so much that even Art Schools are right of center. Sadly, including the San Francisco Art Institute— conservative times, people, conservative times are here.
All You Have To Do Is Be Naked In Front Of People Who Are Drawing Or Photographing. What could be easier?