February 26, 2015

Plein Air Process

Every now and again, I have the fore site - and the time, to photograph my process.  I wanted to show you my set up for plein air.

I arrange my pochade box so that I can see the landscape  behind my painting surface.    This makes it far easier to compare values, etc. at I progress.   If there are any glaring inaccuracies, they are really apparent when you paint this way.  Big shapes to small shapes, always.

On this particular day the sun was peaking in and out, and it gave prolonged painting time.  I was able to face my subject matter without an umbrella set up, which allows me to take a photograph of the landscape past the image without the image (the painting) being in the shade.

At the top you can see my start.  Design, tonal relationships and color masses are blocked in rapidly, then "tweaked" as the painting progresses.

If you look at the reference closely you can see that I made changes to what was in front of me in order to simplify, and draw out the aspects of the scene that I was most engaged with - but overall, it is still a true record to the day.    I leaned the hills a little further towards violet than I saw them, and I brought out the red on the bridge as a color shot.  I also removed the rocks on the shore and simplified those areas by doing so which made it a  stronger painting, and easier to render - and that works for me.

I won't say too much more, because a picture IS worth a thousand words, so I shall let the pictures finish the dialogue here.  Drop me a note if you have questions or comments....

Happy painting!



Painting the Landscape Indoors and Out

Bear Valley Highlands Ranch, Lumby, BC
June 20 - 23 2015
Develop a sound approach to plein air painting and learn how to take it to the next level by utilizing your plein air sketch to develop and inform a larger studio piece.
Gaye will teach en plein air on the first two days of the workshop, and then demonstrate to the students how she utilizes her oil sketch to develop a larger studio piece.   Students will work with Gaye in the field, choosing a subject matter that they will expand into a studio painting on the third and fourth days of the workshop.
The emphasis will be on capturing the fleeting elements of light and atmosphere with the naked eye and recording  accurate color notes  on a 6x8  or 8X10 canvas while in the field. Day one will start with a plein air demo by the instructor, followed by students working on their own plein air piece.
On the second day, students will receive further instruction in plein air techniques, as well as instruction on how to capture photographs that will be useful in the studio.
The last two workshop days will focus on how to develop the plein air sketch, with the help of photo references, into a larger studio piece.  In the studio, we will be working 12X16 or 14 X18, no larger.
The value of learning this process comes in teaching the artist how to combine the energy, accuracy and authenticity of painting in the field with the convenience of photo references as an aid to their studio process.
Students  will need a digital camera, and should bring an Ipad or tablet if they have one so that they can download their photos and work from their camera to their tablet. If you do not own a tablet, bring a USB cable for your camera so that you can have an image printed for the next day's studio work.  a printer is available at the ranch.
Students should bring a few good photo references from home as well, just in case the weather drives us indoors where we can discuss and practice the process of painting the landscape from photo reference material.
Accommodation and food are offered for an additional $85 per workshop day  and it is recommended students stay on site, as the location is rather remote.  The food is wonderful and the accommodation comfortable and charming.

Four Days - $490
Accomodation & food (both are excellent) $85 per day.

1 comment:

  1. Gaye, I enjoy reading your posts and looking at your lovely plein air paintings. So inspiring and this one is one of my favourites!

    I wish you all the best success with your upcoming workshop - it sounds wonderful! Bobbi