The gallery is called the "Artelie Gallery" and is kind of tricky to find but I had some good directions.
go out EXIT 9 of Myeongdong Station and take the first street on the right. Walk straight to the end of this short street. There is a Woori Bank at the end. Turn right.Also I followed this live view first, which really helped. Definitely if you see the Woori Bank then you know you are in the right place. Just look for a reddish sign at the 5th floor of the building with that cafe and you got it!
Myeongdong Gallery is a few doors down on the left. Look for Insomnia Coffee. The school is on the 5th Floor.
I took the bus to Myeongdong with just enough spare time to get a bite to eat. The class started at 6pm and when I finally made it there they were about to begin.
As I set up my easel and drawing board another artist talked to me. He was an older gentlemen, as it turns out, from Georgia and was in Korea doing contract work. I told him how I lived a part of my life in Florida and that made for a nice connection.
The next thing I knew the model took her pose and I was drawing. The set up was that there would be one 20 minute pose then a series of 10 and 5 minute poses after that. I felt I was a bit rusty at first but eventually got the hang of things again.
I started out on a large pad of paper, but eventually moved to my sketchbook.
First I used an ink brush-pen, which was fun because you can't erase it so you have to be deliberate about your drawing.
Then I moved on to using a 6B pencil, which allowed me to lay down gesture lines then go over it with contour ones.
Then the model gave us 5 minute poses where she changed to a different position for each one. When the class started the man from Georgia told me about the timing. We both agreed that we were use to 30 minute or hour long poses. He said the gallery director says that this is really helpful for our development. After I started to get further in I realized he was right. I was making quicker decisions and felt less insecure.
Before I knew it the class was over and it was 8pm already. It seemed like everyone else pretty much knew each other and the rhythm of the class. The director put an easel in the middle of the room and other students came over and put up their sketchbooks on it. He took pictures of their work. I put up mine, too.
I packed my things and returned the borrowed items, such as the easel and board. As I was leaving they gestured to me. Turns out they usually go out to eat afterwards. I told them that I live far away and had to go. Another moment in my life, here in Korea, where my desire not to drink and the need to get home at a good time takes over the possibility of socializing.
But I felt satisfied after the class. It was like a jolt of electricity brought me back to my artistic training. Certainly, I feel it was worth the 20,000 Won and hectic bus ride over. I am not sure when I will go again as it requires a free Saturday night, but at least I know that whenever I need my art-life-drawing fix that this is out there.
Today (Sunday) that art-jolt was still in me and I went down to the cafe street near Jukjeon station. There I sat down at a cafe and took out my sketchbook. I sipped my strawberry "Fruit Ice" and took in the scenery.
Now, a little time for reflection. If you majored in art in college, but ended up in a job completely outside the art field than you might know my feeling. It is a feeling that you wonder what happened to your pursuit of being an artist. I can say that I enjoy being an English teacher out here in Korea. Of course, I don't really find it pleasant dealing with all the crap that comes from working with Korean people. But I seem to be getting the hang of it. Even though I make a decent living teaching English I have aspirations to still be an artist.
Yet I don't know what will come of those aspirations, all I can do is keep practicing and producing and who knows maybe someday things will blossom.
Till then I like sharing my art with you readers and I hope you enjoy it too.
*Don't worry I haven't forgotten about the post I want to make about the dinner I went to after the KOFIC park...hehe