Anatomical Position

Anatomical Position

Anatomical Position
Anterior Male
Anterior Female
Posterior Male
Posterior Female

I received a grant last year to help with my figurative anatomy studies.  It was a real boost, both in morale and in the opportunity to study something awesome. I took a 3 month online intensive artistic anatomy course, I spent three weeks at the Stanford morgue studying bodies with Dan Thompson, Michael Grimaldi and the BACAA crew. I then returned home and began a series of four figure paintings that I am finally showing publicly today!

These figures are all posed in Anatomical Position, which is one of the first things we learn in a medical anatomy class. All the body’s movements are categorized based on this position. By making these paintings I was able to consciously translate my new technical, theoretical knowledge to the living, breathing, reality of the person. People are more than textbooks, more than flesh and blood, of course. Similar, but totally different.  And this is what we love about life.  Everything in the universe has a unifying baseline, but with wonderful, endless variety.

To create these paintings I hired models who came to stand in my studio about 10 times a piece.  I had each person stand in the same place and painted them roughly in the same scale.  It was a delight to spend so much time with each model, studying and getting to know them.  In fact – three of the models are in the same family. Posterior Male is married to Anterior Female and Posterior Female is sister to Anterior Female.

Haines Foundation Grant Awards Show

I received a grant last year to study anatomy and to make four figure paintings. I worked from January until last Tuesday on this project and finally I’m going to show the results publicly.  I was going to post them here today, but I forgot to take photos before I delivered them to the show! Argh! I do have a couple of drawing studies from the project for you however – which you will not see at the show tonight.
Anatomical Position - Anterior Male
Anatomical Position – Anterior Male
Anatomical Position- Posterior Female
Anatomical Position-
Posterior Female
Anyway, if you’re in Southern Oregon and are free, please come to the show tonight (Friday, March 6) at Ashland Art Center, 357 E. Main St.
I would love to see you all there! 🙂
Big thank you to Lloyd Haines, Wendy Seldon and Ashland Art Center for this grant program, which is a fantastic boost to the visual arts in Southern Oregon.
And — Last but not least, the local newspaper, Ashland Daily Tidings has written up the Grant, the Show and even included a few quotes from me and a pic from my sketchbook! (By the way, the article is mostly accurate, it’s accurate in spirit, but not every detail.  It’s important that I clarify — I did NOT say, “Art will not get you food, clothing and shelter.” What I said was, “Art is not food, clothing and shelter, but it is vitally important.” I was trying to make a balanced statement about how art is life, but it’s also not.  Instead it came out sounding like I thought artists can’t make a living.  Argh!

I Heart Kinesiology!

Back to School with Kinesiology at Ashland Institute of Massage!

My ongoing obsession with knowing specifically the origin, insertion, action and shape of muscles has led me to take a rather in-depth kinesiology class.  Over 100 class hours, plus out of class study time will keep me busy til April.  And, of course I’m translating a lot of this stuff from massage application to artist application.  I feel so fantastic when I’m in a class I love.

kinesiology sketch skull

 

Graphite Sketch by Sarah F Burns

Splenius Sketch

Drawing

Shayln Seated graphite figure drawing by Sarah F Burns

Drawing of Shalyn.  For sale here on Etsy.

Sparro

Portrait of Sparro, from Ilene Geinger’s studio sessions.

Sparro

Portrait of Beth

My favorite working method is having the model come to your studio many days in a row (nine sessions, unless I lost count) – instead of the way I used to work, which was have the model come once a week for a number of weeks.  When you have the model in the room everyday, you don’t forget which pigments you were using, where things were set up and what your goals are.

Portrait of Beth Oil on Panel 20" x 18"
Portrait of Beth
Oil on Panel
20″ x 18″

Finished Skull

Skull

 

Finished this piece in time for the PERISHABLE show at APU. I’m also making another project for that show, that I will take no pictures of, tell you nothing about and that is temporary so the only way to view it will be to come see it during April at APU.

Gross Anatomy for Artists Workshop

The workshop I just attended was amazing – we drew a model every morning and in the afternoons we studied cadavers at Standford Medical School.  What an experience.  These photos are from the first day – you can see me in the pink sweater with the face mask – looking frightened.  First day was freaky, mostly because of the formaldehyde smell.  The next day was interesting and then each subsequent day was more and more and more interesting and I’m so glad to have had the experience.  Getting a sense of the physical nature of the  insertions, origins, actions, structure, function of the muscles was so valuable, although really just an intro, I have much to memorize to thoroughly benefit.  I’d like to go back again – hopefully this summer.

FYI – Michael Grimaldi, instructor, pointed out on the first day that these bodies were given by their former inhabitants very consciously – these aren’t coerced or unclaimed bodies or anything.  Dan pointed out that studying them really shows you how that what makes us human is the animating force, and it’s true; it was surprisingly undisturbing – I kept finding myself saying, “it’s so beautiful”.

My drawings from the workshop aren’t much to write home about, so I’ll just show the cell phone photos.  The real value was in the new understanding, the curiosity sparked, the ideas I plan to pursue.

drawings from gross anatomy workshop

Check out BACAA, Michael Grimaldi and Dan Thompson. BACAA – workshop host and location, Michael  and Dan, instructors.

Julian Bell and Sarah F Burns at APU

Our show opens Feb 7.  I will have to miss the opening cause I’m heading to San Francisco for a anatomy workshop (involving cadavers!) at BACAA.

Flyer APU show Jan 2014 web

Water

Water by Sarah F B urnsMy latest piece for Smithfields.  My working title is Water.  Titles -eh.  They’re hard.  They either very robotic for me, or very silly and embarrassing.  I am not a writer.

I was playing with echoes in this piece – the male figure and the crab both have bent knees, orange color.  The woman has a mermaid tattoo (hard to make out), the baby and the fish have their mouths open.  The baby and the fish recently came out of the water.