My access to models is through a local life drawing group. Because this is a group, I cannot direct how the sessions run so I have tried to cover the requirements of every exercise over the last few months and have posted my work from each session into the appropriate exercise blog-post. I have been somewhat restricted, for example the models have all been female to date, and there have never been any poses lasting for an hour or more. I have used http://www.posespace.com in recent weeks to try to fill that gap.
One of the group members brings a stereo and I enjoy his choice of music (find myself humming along actually – nobody has complained yet!) and it helps me focus. On the weeks he isn’t there and there is no music, I find my work is not as good. The group meets on a Thursday evening. My day job is very demanding and often I am physically and emotionally tired by that point in the week- that impacts the quality of my work as well, much more than I would have expected.