i did an 'art foundation' course after my 'a' levels a million years ago, and i used to avoid life drawing like the plague with hundreds of ridiculous excuses; y'know, a bit like avoiding games/gym/p.e. when you're eleven years old. (my gran's just died, my games kits was swallowed by a raging angry crocodile, etc...or was that just the girls at my school? anyway, i digress.) to get into art school, you had to prove you could draw, and i well, couldn't. somehow, by fluke, i managed to produce one reasonably decent drawing of an old chap in the buff and wonder of wonders, i got in. probably more on the strength of my textile portfolio, but i like to think that the life drawing of 'walter' tipped the balance. my problem was that i was petrified of making a mistake, i used to freeze up in front of these enormous sheets of paper and end up drawing crappy little awkward stick figures with no perspective. now i'm not saying for a minute that i'm any great shakes still, but sheets of white paper no longer make me freeze up with fear. that's actually quite liberating, and if i make a mistake, who cares?