June 5, 2012

Keeping it Simple

Andalusian Olive Grove, 8X10" oil on canvas panel

A lovely thing about painting on location is that when you bring home your field studies, they have a way of transporting you back to the place and time; the smell of the air, the temperature, sounds, all of it.  Although what I remember most about this particular painting day was how our hosts packed us a picnic lunch of fresh local cheese,  meat and fruit - and baguettes that were so fresh they were still warm.  It was a picture perfect painting experience in the Andalusian countryside.

A word about the painting itself - this was one of those pieces where it was obvious before I even started how much simplification would be required to paint this on location.  Big shapes first - and leave out as many small shapes as you can.  The field of wild flowers that made a yellow carpet underneath the trees would have been impossible to paint literally and so I simplified greatly, and, to my eye at least, it reads as what it is.  It's not only more fun for the painter, but I believe also more fun for the viewer to suggest rather than explain every detail.  Just say the important stuff; otherwise things can get tedious.

I will be doing a plein air workshop this summer in the first week of August for four days.  I would love it if you could come out and paint with me.  I will be holding the workshop out of my home studio in Sorrento BC and we will travel around to some of my favorite painting spots.  I will post details shortly.  Please feel free to email if you have interest or questions.

Happy Painting,

PS - I still have room in my COLOR MIXING workshop - see sidebar for details.  It's coming right up so contact me immediately if you are interested!

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