My original post “How to Swipe Like a Pro” got a lot of interesting comments, but will no doubt have no effect on the legions of people out there who seem to think using reference to make art is some sort of betrayal of principles. We really don’t care about those people, but I do care about things like this:

A fascinating new documentary, Corsi: The World’s First Male Supermodel, is now seeking funds on Kickstarter. I am a backer of this project.

Corsi’s face and figure was painted, sketched and sculpted by the likes of such great artists as John Singer Sargent, Pierre Auguste Cot and James Earle Fraser. There are statues and reliefs of Corsi found in New York’s Battery Park, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, St. Paul’s Cathedral in London, and countless other locations around the globe.

Corsi’s story begins as very young gypsy boy, who grew to consort with royalty and then lost everything. He died of consumption in 1924 at the age of 56. Bobby Nye, an opportunistic silent film actress and casual acquaintance of Corsi obtained power of attorney over the ailing man, who was unable to speak for himself in his final days. His large collection of costumes, priceless artwork and photographic archives were quickly liquidated. The following decades saw Corsi’s legacy slip into obscurity.

Here is a photograph of Corsi, used in an 1895 painting by John Singer Sargent.

And here is the final painting.

Wow, that dude Sargent uses photos for reference, just like Alex Ross.

I hope you’ll consider donating a dollar or two to this fascinating Kickstarter project.