While going through a box of art supplies I had in storage I came across this ticket to the Friday Eventing Sketch Class from 1982. I suddenly realized how important the Art Students League was in getting me through medical school.
I went to medical school in Newark, New Jersey and the coursework was pretty intense. One day I discovered the Art Students League on West 57th Street and began going to the Friday night sketch class. For me, the formaldehyde odor of the anatomy lab was counterbalanced by the thick smells of paint and turpentine in the halls of the League.
Back then the League was the only game in town for open life-drawing, and the place was packed. If you didnt get there early you may not get in. Sketchers ranged from serious professionals to artistic aspirants like me. There was no teacher and I experimented with pencils, brushes, charcoal, and colored chalk. When I got bored with the model I sketched the sketchers.
In this post I present a variety of styles and materials. As the years wore on I accumulated a mountain of sketchbooks which had to be thinned because of the tiny Manhattan living spaces. In the pre-digital age many of my sketches were lost but I preserved what I thought was the best, some of which are shown here.
Storage was always a problem. Folders and files packed with artwork were stashed in drawers, closets, and storage bins. I fixed this when I renovated my Manhattan apartment and made a studio that accomodates flat files.
My days at the League slipped away as my medical career got busy. Thankfully I’ve been blessed to carve out time to return to my art supplies, and build a studio in my Manhattan apartment where I can grow artistically, picking up right where I left off.
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