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& 62 Competition winners

Draw whatyou see

Love short stor y competition Winner

She is good at portraits. Always has been. Drawing has been her real talent, especially of the human body. It is the talent that forms who she is, what she has done. She understands structures beneath a soft surface. Can judge weight, density, knows how emotion alters flesh. Her pencil draws a tentative outline. She loves the sweep of curves. The feeling in her wrist. She thinks of her husband. Today’s model is elderly, wrinkled. A pensioner. Finding something to do in retirement. He’s bald. Almost completely. A rounded head, shiny but bruised and battered from bumps on low lintels. A few white hairs straggle into his neck meeting the whiskery stubble around his jaw. He wears his own clothes. They’re only doing heads today but even if they aren’t shown, clothes are part of a portrait: indicative of character, part of who a person is. The grey collar is crumpled. She can see tiny threads sticking up from the fold marking it as worn, even threadbare. The dark red jumper over his shirt has little bobbles on the sleeve and over the chest where his car seat belt rubs. Lumpy hands relax, one on top of the other, on trousers that are old, fixed with creases from hours of sitting. His dull dusty shoes fasten with hook tape.

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START FRESH: New year, new adventure • Build your confidence • Fix your bad habits Make 2017 your year! STAR interview: Elif Shafak: Writing across boundaries • 24 writing competitions to enter • £63,980 in writing prizes to be won

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