Thursday, February 13, 2014

Two Pots

Diane Mannion, Two Pots, 6x6" oil on gessoboard

Painting Outside

Took my Punta Gorda Visual Arts Center class outside this week, was one of those perfect SW Floridian winter days, sunny and about 80 degrees.  We had plenty of sympathy for our Northern friends suffering this horrendous winter!  

Two Pots was my demo finished later from iPhone photo reference.   While busy talking and teaching, it's difficult to finish a painting on the spot... but happy to at least show my students one way to start a painting.  

Several artists had never painted outside before ... was an eye-opening and refreshing experience for them.  Hopefully, my students will be inspired enough to paint outside often in natural light, even if it's just to paint a flower pot on the porch.  The new art center director, MaryAnn Tipton told us new plants and flower pots would be added to the patio the next day!  We can't wait to paint them next week.

Some beginners seem intimidated by the current plein air painting rage and all the fancy equipment.  Think of it instead as simply painting outside.  Drawing in a sketchbook or sketching with watercolors on your lap while sitting in your yard work just as well.  Set up a simple still life on your porch.  Paint in your car... auto-painting, my favorite place is under the open hatchback. 

Or if you're in the freezing wintery North... paint the view out the window.  For inspiration, check out Duane Keiser's fabulous transitory paintings of his window view!

Love this quote from PAINTING ON LOCATION by David Curtis:  "The advantage of painting outside is simply that you are there, living the subject."

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