By ETHAN HOGAN
Two nude models opened up about what it takes to pose in the buff and how being naked makes them more confident.
UNH graduate and undergraduate art classes offer nude modeling courses in which the students paint, sketch or even sculpt the nude models. The models, all of whom are students, are given poses that they hold in front of the class for intervals during three-hour-long sessions.
Eileen Wong, the academic services assistant at the art and art history department says they’ll take applications from anyone and that acceptance into the program primarily depends on scheduling.
“The most important thing we look for in a model is reliability,” she said. Wong also added there are no criteria for body types.
“I think students have this misconception that they have to have a great shape, but we prefer models with all different body types,” she said.
The two nude models interviewed asked to have only their first names published in order to preserve their privacy.
Grace, an anthropology and international affairs major at UNH, is new to the world of nude modeling. After leaving behind an art major, Grace still wanted to be around the art community.
“I really wanted to do something with art in school, I wanted to be around the atmosphere,” Grace said.
She had considered the idea of nude modeling for a few years before she finally made the leap.
“One of my friends I was talking to was a model and I thought I might as well do it,” Grace said, “When else am I going to be able to?”
Grace says she isn’t someone who is normally comfortable being naked. Growing up in Warwick, Rhode Island, what she calls a typical suburb, Grace felt the need to explore.
“I needed to get out of there,”Grace said.
Grace was the youngest of six siblings and she says she never would have thought she was going to be a nude model, but she says the process has made her more confident.
“I don’t have an illusion that I have the perfect body but when people make so many beautiful things it helps,” she said. “It’s better than any other job I’ve ever had.”
Rico, a chemical engineering major at UNH isn’t someone you might expect to be comfortable modeling nude. In high school, Rico was a three-season athlete who liked the structure of being on a football team. Now in his third year, Rico is enlisted in the National Guard and an officer in the ROTC program.
“I like to keep my two lives separate,” said Rico, who admits he likes adventure.
“Life is an experience, and I like to experience everything I can,” said Rico.
Rico also adds he is proud of his body and isn’t afraid to hang loose, saying, “I’ve surfed naked, I don’t care.”
Like Grace, Rico found out about the modeling program through a friend and after thinking it over he applied several times. Grace and Rico describe the modeling experience as calming and they draw parallels with meditation. “You have to detach from your body,” said Grace about being in the same pose for so long.
“You get to go into a zone and get to be with your thoughts in a quiet setting,” said Rico.
The models say they both get sore but when they get breaks they can get up to stretch or look at what the artists have done. Grace and Rico say they are very interested in owning one of the paintings of themselves but have yet to get their hands on one.