A great book of photographs of nudes for use as inspiration for drawing, painting and sculpting/
Life Nudes for Drawing Painting and Sculpting
By Maureen and Douglas Johnson
Live Model Books, 2006
This book is, simply, a book of nude pictures. Various male and female models are shown in a wide variety of poses, each pose photographed from various positions around the model. The book is aimed at artists who might otherwise use live models but who, for various reasons, may not have one available or may choose not to use one. In fact a book like this is even great for those who regularly use live models. What do you do if you get the inspiration to paint at 2am in the morning?
The book is available with and without a CD that contains the images as files. This makes the book useful to a wider group of people, including those who use tracing images in Painter, for example. The disk version allows you to zoom in and rotate around the models to more positions than are shown in the book.
Since life model work is a core, and many would say critical, part in the development of all artists, this book is a great tool. Many do not have easy access to a life model and so a book and CD like this can be invaluable. My one annoyance with this book is more of a philosophical one and more directed at a society, parts of which can seem to be so puerile as to make it necessary. In the book form (but not on the CD version) female genitalia is blurred out whilst male is not. Now the authors do make mention of the impracticality of doing so with male genitalia. But, frankly, the authors should not have needed to do this at all. A society that has sufficiently vocal sections that mean it can’t deal with nudity but can with rampant violence in the media iseems sick indeed, especially in those sections with an interest in art. Sadly the author’s concern is well justified in many parts of the United States where they might have trouble getting the book onto bookshop shelves, especially in the college bookshops, where this book needs to be.
The authors are to be congratulated for putting this great resource together. I know I’ll be encouraging the art and photomedia students at the college I run a degree program at to buy this book and I hope you do too. The book offers a large range of poses, none of which are sexy, but rather very useable, in full or in part, for a large range of art applications. A very highly recommended resource.