Thursday, September 29, 2016

Painting Plein Air

This week I made a few studies out doors of Choate Island.  The view is from J.T. Farnham's 88 Eastern Ave, in Essex, MA. It was an amazing, clear morning.  The strong shadows changed dramatically over the course of two hours so I had three paintings going to try and record what the light was doing. What I love about being outside painting is that the painting becomes like a record of passing time.  It is frustrating when you get something down on the panel and then the light completely changes, but at the same time there is a joy and humor in the fact that we really don't get to hold on to anything.  The longer you look at something the better.  It is important to look more at what is in front of you as the time spent looking at your painting.

By keying in the value of the sky first I base the rest of the values from that.  If the sky is too dark you get in trouble.  The refection of the sky in the water is almost always a little darker in value that the sky due to the perspective.  In the excitement of driving up to paint at 5am I left my wallet at home and my friend Wayne stopped by on his way to work to give me $20. Thank you Wayne!  It was really nice also to have no one around, only a few joggers and those cars going by.  A group of artists that I liked are those from the Barbican School.  Theodore Rousseau it is said "made himself a mirror rather than an artist" by Theophile Gautier. Many of the artists that I am drawn to seem to be after a certain truth and realism. In the process these artists tend to make pictures that do not look "real", but instead are a unique perspective on how they the artist see and feel about what they are seeing.  No one can really be a mirror because we are human and that will spill out.