The act of drawing the human figure from a live (often nude) model, and each such drawing produced. Widely considered an essential component of an artist's education, life drawing trains the simultaneous workings of the eyes, the brain, and the hand; and increases skills needed for representation of the human form ? arguably the most important subject in art in its long history. Life drawing should increase knowledge of the underlying structure of the human figure ? from skeletal to muscle, fat, and skin ? the form to which any costume must correspond. Life drawing establishes the importance of seeing the figure dynamically ? in its cababilities for variety of pose and composition, action and expression. There are many ways to intensify the learning experience of life drawing. One is the practice of gesture drawing ? drawing at relatively great speeds, for as long as five minutes, and as short as a few seconds. Others are continuous-line and contour drawing.Examples:Mike Reed (American, contemporary), Gesture Drawing of Reclining Woman, charcoal pencil on newsprint, 18 x 11 inches, drawn while observing a model's 5 minute pose. "I am absolutely persuaded that almost every drawing issue an artist will encounter can be found in the human figure," Mike Reed has said.Tony DiTerlizzi (American, 1969-), Life Drawing of a Male Model, Berol Prismacolor terra cotta and China white pencils on paper, 11 x 8 1/2 inches, the artist. Visit the artist's site.