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I Love Drawing Ballroom Dancing Couples

I have come to LOVE drawing ballroom dancing couples, but this was not always the case. Beautifully executed dancing captivates and mesmerizes, partners moving as one, the only communication between the partners being the most subtle of body cues. The fluidity and dynamics of movements tell a story, whether it is the intense drama of the Tango, or the lightheartedness and joyfulness of the Quickstep. Creating the lines and sense of movement REALLY intimidated me. I would visualize the dancers, remember how it feels when dancing, then agonize over how difficult it would be to capture the flowing gracefulness in a drawing. My husband and daughter would look at the work-in-progress, remark on how good it looked, and I would say “I can’t finish drawing that, it’s so hard”. You see, I think there’s very little latitude in drawing dancers: the body carriage, hand placement, the points of contact between the partners, how the partners connect, all must be just exactly so. My husband and I were competitive dancers, in fact, that is how we met. In a way, it probably would have been easier if I hadn’t trained in International Ballroom and International Latin dances. I wouldn’t have been so aware of the many nuances of dance. I also am anal-retentive, if you haven’t already gleaned this. I can’t tell you how many times I erased, redrew, erased again, because I have lost count. Discouraged and down-hearted, constantly mumbling about how dancers are so unforgiving to render. And why did I choose to draw dancers anyway? In the end, persistence paid off. I am pretty pleased with the final result. Ultimately, it was about believing in myself, rising to the challenge and succeeding. Could the drawings be better? Of course, anything can be improved. But for now, I am content, until my anal retentiveness kicks in again. Uh oh, I think the neck line of my Foxtrot lady is off a millimeter…

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