Practice Session #6 - Titania Kumeh

Being present for yourself

If you’ve ever joined us during one of our Tuesday night figure drawing classes, then you know the amazing art model, Titania Kumeh. We recently got the opportunity to discuss how she shows up for herself and integrates ritual into her practice.

What would you say is your consistent creative practice? Do you adhere to a routine or ritual ? 

Art modeling has definitely been my most consistent creative practice for more than 11 or so years now. I love performing and I don't have a problem with public nudity or being scantily dressed lol (sorry, mom!). As far as routines, I've been into hot showers or baths before my sessions to help loosen my joints, nerves and inhibitions. Also, saging myself helps me be more present and ward off anxiety. I'm not consistent with it, but stretching and yoga are a must for me to help with my flexibility. 

What personal tips do you have to feel positive and optimistic when you are working?

I try to remind myself to do what my body wants to do and not overthink. 

How has your pre-established practice and routines helped you through these more uncertain and trying times?

Moving online as an art model has actually helped me be more in control with the hours I work and the conditions I work in. I've definitely had to learn more skills and am still practicing things like lighting and set design, skills pro-photographers have an edge on over me. But learning and practicing these things have definitely helped me grow my creativity during these times. 

How do you handle emotions while you work?

Stress can often lead to a stunted practice, or it could make you breakout of your funk.

What sort of steps in your practice are geared toward harnessing and supporting your emotions?

Meditating is important to me and remembering to breathe. I've definitely gotten stressed out with this new zoom life I've had to move into, but I had to figure it out. I'm still figuring it out, so that I can work consistently and independently and with as much ease as possible. Ideally, art modeling is my time to physically work out and express my emotions as honestly as possible without caring how I look. When I remember that, my zoom screw ups and tech mistakes matter a little less. Ultimately, I'm supposed to be here for me.