Circle of Six, Sometimes Seven

Gentle readers, particularly the artists among you, are  you wondering at the many opportunities I get to paint from live models?  How does that happen when there is no way could I afford it on my own?  It happens because I am  lucky enough to have friends who are just as obsessed as I am, and another friend slightly less possessed but able to offer us the hospitality of her studio.  With the advantage of so much practice since last Spring, we have been progressing as artists. One by one, each of us has turned from drawing to painting.   Suddenly, two weeks ago, I looked around the studio and discovered sights amazing and inspiring.   Since then I have been collecting as many images from the stalwarts as I could, to share them with you.

So this week I  celebrate the team, the Circle of Six (sometimes seven) who  show up week after week, sometimes twice a week, each week producing better and better art, and now producing it better with paint.

Heather Lord was the original painting fool among us.  I remember her years ago, bringing her paints to the Saturday Life Group, trying desperately to capture those short poses with oil paint.  Daft, but the results were vibrant.  It was her desire for longer, painting-possible poses that last April, led to our Tuesday morning experiment with 3-hours-as-default programming.

This Fall, with the consent of Peter Clive, our Friday workshop instructor, we continued with 3-hour program.  Lately, for both Tuesday and Friday sessions, we have enjoyed double sessions on the same pose. We have just come off two straight weeks with  Becky in one pose, and started on another pose that will continue next week.)  I was lucky enough to get photos of Heather’s paintings of both poses, the second one still a work in progress.

From Heather, week 1

From Heather, pose 1

Heather's painting of Rebecca [Work in Progress} week 2

Heather’s painting of Rebecca [Work in Progress} pose 2

My own portrait of Becky in week 1 of pose 1 was in last week’s blog, “Painting Faces“.  Week 2 of pose 1 is toward the end of this blog.

After noticing what fun the two painters (that’s Heather and I) were having, the others decided to give painting a try too.  Nita Van Zandt was one of the first to brave the new frontier of painting, and right away–way too quickly we first adopters carped–she began creating  bold, vivid images, experimenting, of  course, because painting is  all about experimentation.

Nita's, week 2

Nita’s, pose 1

Elizabeth Peck–no one works harder than Elizabeth to perfect her art.  She takes countless workshops and can quote some famous artist on almost any point.  However, she was too busy to furnish a photo this time.  I hope we can catch her later.

For years perhaps, Fletcher Taft had been drawing with pencil or Conte crayon.  He produced small, delicate images, quite lovely, but not “bold” or “adventurous”.  Look at him now!

Fletch's, week 1

Fletch’s, pose 1

Fletcher's  week 2

Fletcher’s pose 2

Nancy Healy has  been at this longer than any of the rest of us.   Her artistry was and is already mature, so “progress” is less striking and unnecessary for her.  She favors painting with pastels,  despite its drawbacks.  (Pastel paintings are very fragile.)   Like the rest of us, Nancy doesn’t worry about selling, and she is a master with her pastels.

Nancy's pastel

Nancy’s pose 1

The sometimes-seventh member of our circle is Tony Fiore.   Tony is a man  “who knows a lot”.  About everything.  But not in an obnoxious way.  He entertains us with random knowledge on those days when his sailing does not interfere with his art-making.  Like most of us (except Nancy), he is a frequent student at the Institute of Art (the “Tute”, he likes to call it).  He was the last of us to try painting, possibly because he refuses to paint in oils, but eventually he could not resist, and for week 1 of pose 1, he brought his acrylics to give it a go.  Unfortunately I did not get a picture of his painting from that week, and he reverted to charcoal this week.  For the time being, we’ll have to settle for  his drawing.

Tony's drawing of Becky

Tony’s drawing pose 1

I had a particularly good week myself.  I completed one on Tuesday that may be my best yet, and started one on Friday that I will be finishing up next week.  Here they are:

Seated on Red Drape (Tuesday)

Seated on Red Drape (Tuesday)

Seated on platform, WIP, Pose 2

Seated on platform, WIP, Pose 2

I accidentally smudged the first one in the course of getting it home, but decided not to repair.   I took a photograph at an angle to the second one so as to avoid glare, so that’s why it off kilter to the camera.  But no glare!  When finished, there will be a suggestion of the two artists painting in the background, and one of them is Tony.  The other is Steve, who comes so rarely that despite his role as model for this painting, is getting no glory.  Yet.

Aline Lotter is currently exhibiting:

at the Hatfield Gallery in Manchester (Langer Place, 55 S. Commercial St., Manchester, NH); at the Bartlett Inn in Bartlett; at the Red Jacket Inn in North Conway;  at the Soo Rye Art Gallery in Rye NH; at her law offices at 41 Brook St in Manchester; and at her studio by appointment.

3 responses to “Circle of Six, Sometimes Seven

  1. Thanks, Aline! It’s such a great group of supportive, enthused practitioners! We’re very lucky to have the time, space, and participation to support the effort.


  2. A nice tribute to all your colleagues Aline. I like your recent work! Don’t fuss too much about getting realism into the background – I am relishing the contrast with the figure!