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Friday, May 24, 2013

"You Mind If I Take A Picture Of That?"

Studying students are even better to draw than sleeping people...
Especially, if they are actually studying, like this young high school student. I'd qualify her as a Catholic school student if I thought that, nowadays, only Catholic school students wear uniforms. But, I've been informed, by those who are in the know about these things, that some public and private schools have uniform requirements.

But, for the sake of this sketch, I will assume she is a Catholic high school student. This is the third sketch of three that I drew on a rainy day Wednesday instead of painting outdoors. I thought the sketch came out pretty good, but mainly because the teenager barely moved.

I could never have done that when I was in school. Nothing, in books, interested me enough to remain that focussed... and still.

The first person I sketched on this same, wet day, got up to get a refill "to go" and saw me drawing a second sketch. For the next twenty minutes, she talked about her artistic inabilities in a college course that took her to Italy. She was a biology major that needed crip courses like "PAINTING AND SKETCHING IN ITALY!" in order to finish her requirements for graduation.

I said," Gee, I've been a professional artist for most of my life and I've never been to Italy!"

Anyway, she saw my depiction of her at the computer and, amongst other things, ( like wanting me to draw homes for her real estate business. ) asked if she could take a picture of the sketch with her iPhone thingy!

When our conversation fizzled out, she gave me her card and asked for mine. I guess I really gotta get my business card designed and printed, though in my ad circles, it was considered, kind of silly, to present one to a client.

Everyone, here, seems to require a business card. But, I told her that I had a plethora of websites and would use her biz card with the email address printed on the card to send her more url's than she will ever have time peruse!

After she waved goodbye... I mean, "Chow!" I thought to myself that, by the weekend, my visual data will "go viral" all over the local real estate industry.

So, what does this impromptu "Italian fandango pseudo business and art seminar" have to do with the little teenage "Valley Girl" so diligently studying with her granita?

As I packed up to leave, I decided to break her concentration by showing her my sketch. I didn't give it any more thought than if one "model" wants to spread the word of my artistic prowess, two would be even better!

I said, in passing while showing my sketch of her, "I'm impressed with your diligence... you barely moved, and that makes it easier for someone like me, to complete a nicer drawing...

"Oh my god!" Is that me? Oh, that's awesome... That's really awesome!

"Thank you," I said, rather demurely, not wanting to come off like a dirty, old "arteest" waiting to lure young Catholic high school girls into my studio to see my... "etchings!"

"Thank you, I said again. "You were a great model!"

"What are you studying?" But, before I could continue to change the subject from that "dirty old man status," she blurted out...

"Mister, would you mind if I take a picture of it to show to my friends?"

"Of course not, I'm flattered that you approve!" I laughingly replied, waiting in the back of my mind, like Pavlov's dog, for the standard art director's qualification of, "But...!"

" I like it... But!"

But, as I folded close my sketchbook to quietly dismissed myself, I heard her say, "This is great!" and then something that sounded something like... "Everyone will be so totally...

"Jealous?"I thought.

As I walked across the parking lot to my car, a few other things crossed my mind. My first thought was that she's was gonna be grounded if her parents find out. The other was, with her back to me, the sketch couldn't be considered a portrait though that probably doesn't matter now because it already has "gone viral" with all of her classmates.

Talk about one stop advertising!

Oh, and another thought that bounced around in my head on that day...

I wonder how nice it would be if all art directors were Catholic High School Valley Girls?

Copyright 2013/Ben Bensen III