nude sitting request
October 6, 2007 2:10 PM Subscribe
A co-worker has an odd request...
posted by frosty_hut to Human Relations (44 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I work in a kind of artsy environment. I got into a conversation with a male co-worker the other day (I'm female) about painting. Now that I wish I could recall how it began, I can't remember how we started talking about nudes. Anyway, he said his wife is a painter and she also occasionally paints nudes. He added that he's been trying to get her to paint a nude of him for years, but she hasn't done it yet.
This guy--I'll call him Giles--asked me if I paint nudes. I said I occasionally did, which is true, but then I realized the conversation was getting sort of strange and I immediately wished I hadn't elaborated. He asked me if I'd ever painted a male nude, and I said I hadn't done anything like that since life class in college. Giles then asked me if I would consider painting him nude. I sort of went straight into efficiency mode and said, sure, I could do that but since both of us are very busy, it might make more sense to snap a photo that I could use, rather than spend hours in a sitting. I didn't have any intention of either painting Giles nude or snapping his picture with the same intent--but I wasn't thinking, and I turn into a motormouth when I'm nervous or on the spot. I just hoped the whole thing would be forgotten.
The next day, I saw Giles again and he immediately brought up the damn painting. Our boss was right there, so Giles didn't mention the nude thing, but he did blurt out: Say, Frosty, I'm serious, I want you to paint me. My boss turns to me and says, Oh, you're a painter? And it's just getting weirder by the minute. I said, Look. Giles, shouldn't we clear this with your wife first? I was sort of laughing, trying to express to our boss and any bystanders, and indirectly to Giles, that I was treating the whole thing as a joke. Giles said, sure, everything has to be cleared with her anyway.
I'm sure as shit that my own husband would not be cool with me painting a male co-worker nude, and I'm actually not that good an artist anyway, and the whole thing would be freaky and uncomfortable. I do get a vibe from Giles that he's attracted to me, though he's not at all flirtatious in the slap-and-tickle way--he's very serious, even pompous, and a bit of an egomaniac. I happen to like Giles (although my husband thinks he's a pretentious dick), and I don't want to cause any friction with him because I do work with him, and he's been one of the nicer people at my job, and I need that kind of social support. I don't want to lose a good work relationship, but I'm going to have to wiggle out of the painting thing.
How can I do this gracefully? I'd be less weirded out if he wanted to paint ME nude. Thoughts?