Here's some (kind of) life drawings. All of these were done from photos, as unfortunately I don't exactly have a live model on hand for the summer. Maybe next summer I'll have to get a mail order bride. While obviously this is not as helpful as live figure drawings, it has helped stave off the rust. And one good aspect is that I have the advantage of picking and choosing poses, and the time I want/need for each.
But doing these has made me notice how boring and average almost every model hired for us is. I can think of three who actually seemed like some sort of character and weren't just a puppet being posed. These photos at least have a sense of either story or character, something that I think is very under served in life drawing classes. I get that these models are paid much better money, but given the amount we fork out for tuition, I'm sure they could spring for some better ones. I mean if 200 photography students can each find their own models (just to take close ups of their eye), I'm sure with the resources the college has, they could find better ones for us. The fact that I can go through a years worth of life drawings and find the same model in the same pose in almost ten different drawings is kind of ridiculous.
I also understand that when models are as attractive as those I've drawn here, or are better actors, they can probably make better money for less hours. But I guarantee if you asked all 400+ students in our program if they would chip in an extra $500 in tuition for the best models/actors, you would get a unanimous 'yes.'
But for now I think this method is a good alternative. I know that I can't find the same variety of body types, but the variety of interesting poses that actually suggest a setting or character more than makes up for it.