I offer her a cup of tea, first, spending an unnecessary amount of time filling the kettle, selecting the mug, brewing the tea and pouring the milk. I make polite chit-chat about the weather and her journey. I suggest she uses the upstairs loo rather than the one in the hallway, knowing that the journey up and down the stairs will add precious seconds to the trip and delay the inevitable. Eventually, there is no avoiding it. I slip off my dress and underwear and perch on the sofa.
But, she adds, there was an unexpected upside. I began drawing myself then I told friends about what I was doing and then it became strangers and it really just snowballed from there. Do you remember the first nude you drew for someone? Was it nerve-wracking capturing something so intimate and presenting it back to them? Once I had more than 20 in six hours. Which is, on average, about zero.