A street car named desire

Our Tutor for the last few weeks at the Royal Drawing School has been Tom Newbolt

Thomas  has an extensive history in art, he tells us, “In their different ways oil painting, aquatints, charcoal drawings, watercolours and sketchbooks require that you draw intensely, attentively and as if everything depended on the result. Increasingly it is a state of mind, concentrating on the subject more than the means or on skills that permits a coming together of elements which may mean nothing individually but seen together make an appalling truth, a sombre beauty, a dance of joy.”


I have learned a lot from Tom about illustration and placing figures in space.  Each week we are given a written brief.  We must then use the life model and art history books to recreate the brief.  For example a scene from “A Street Car Named Desire.”


“The setting is the exterior of a corner building on a street called Elysian Fields, which runs between the river and the train tracks in a poor section of New Orleans that has “raffish [crude] charm.” Faded white stairs lead up to the entrances of the shabby building’s two flats. Steve and Eunice live upstairs, and Stanley and Stella live downstairs. The hum of voices in the street can be heard, as well as the bluesy notes of a cheap piano playing in a bar around the corner. (Williams notes that the music from this piano is to set the mood throughout the play.) It is an early May evening, and the sky at dusk is almost turquoise.  Eunice and a Negro woman are relaxing on the steps of the building when Stanley and his buddy Mitch show up.”



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