Thursday, December 11, 2014

Corner Window

Corner Window, 12x9 oil, plein air, ©Diane Mannion

Let It Go

A friend gave me three words today... as a gift!  "Let It Go."  Ahhh... instant stress relief.

They were not in reference to this painting, but also useful here.   I let the painting go before fiddling too much and losing the spontaneous plein air feel.    

Painted with the fabulous Light Chasers again at Historic Spanish Point in Osprey.  Artists were everywhere!  We even out-numbered the tourists.

My setup

Friday, December 5, 2014

Painting at Sharkys

Painting at Sharky's, 9x12" oil, plein air, ©Diane Mannion

Artists Painting

The Light Chasers plein air artistss surrounded Sharky's by the pier in Venice yesterday.  Windy day, gorgeous light and sunshine... painter's paradise!

I enjoy the company of artists as much as I love painting!  

But this painting was a struggle (so what else is new?).  Stood in the sun and couldn't figure out why my umbrella was the only one that kept popping off, must have been in a wind gust alley because I noticed the artists in front of me had no problem.  Also could not find my glasses.  Also forgot the term KISS... keep it simple stupid.  But aside from the tinkering and fiddling, I think this painting gives a good impression of the lovely morning.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Fishery Sketch

Fishery Sketch, 5x7" watercolor sketch, plein air, ©Diane Mannion

Fearless Sketching

The reason I'm so obsessed with watercolor lately is because I'm treating these little studies like sketches... nothing serious, simply practice, thus NOTHING TO FEAR.  If you're not an artist, you would not understand this silly nervousness.  Like stage fright, it happens every time an artist approaches a blank space to fill.  Depending on the artist's experience, it may last from a few seconds to minutes or until the artist gives up.

I've been studying the work of Marc Taro Holmes on his blog and in his new book, THE URBAN SKETCHER.  An inspiration!  He describes his journey of sketching with pencils, ink, and watercolor up to his current achievement of painting with watercolor while leaving the pencils behind, drawing with the brush, instead.  A great challenge for a watercolorist! 

I approach my oil paintings this way, drawing with the brush, but watercolor is a lot more unforgiving.  So today I painted the Fishery Sketch without the aid of a pencil.  A lot of planning went into a tiny thumbnail sketch first, using a pencil, but the painting was brush only.  Felt like a tightrope walker without a net, but a good way to become a bold and fearless painter!
Thumbnail sketch about 2" wide 

Monday, December 1, 2014

Green Street

Green Street, 5x7" watercolor sketch, plein air, ©Diane Mannion

Two Sketch Morning

Wonderful time painting with the VAC Punta Gorda Plein Air artists this morning on Green Street, Englewood.  I did two quick sketches... one of the church above and a pink house below:
Pink House, 5x7" watercolor sketch, plein air, ©Diane Mannion

Afterwards, artists set their paintings up for a friendly crit, shared compliments, tips, and encouragement.  We learn a lot from each other!  All levels and mediums.  Paints Monday mornings. Great group!