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New Paintings from Plein Air Studies

There was a time when plein air studies were considered just that - studies to be used as material for larger studio paintings. Nowadays, the goal is promoted as being the completion of a painting, ready to be signed, framed and sold at the "quick draw" event! For many of us, the plein air studies are the best "first step" in which we see our subject with clarity, observing hidden colors and temperatures. Together with the scents, sounds and emotions of the moment, we can create a painting that is perfect in itself, and may also send us on a journey to some other interpretation.

If you are like me, you often have plein air studies that are nice enough in themselves but either are not quite finished, or in this case, ignited an excitement about how it could be done differently. This painting in the background was a demonstration during my workshop in the French Alps in September. From the beginning of the painting, I saw a Japanese influence. It was not intentional then, but now I am using that inspiration to make a new painting.

The theme for my fall classes is "Travel with Evelyn" and the lesson each week will focus on a principle/technique/composition - whatever makes a good lesson in using a study to create a stronger painting.

I am all set up; I'll be back with the results! I may change the format, use cold or hot press paper, or perhaps masa paper. You will note that I have my reference photo up on a large screen; it really helps see detail in my photographs. I don't necessarily include them but it's more information. Happy Painting!


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