Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Plein Air Class

The Orangeville Art Group had a plein air workshop on a beautiful day last Sunday.  Rosemarie Armstrong made her country home and grounds available.  We gathered around the pond and spread out from there.

In the Shade - or Caught by the Sun

My remarks were aimed at strategies for painting en plein air including why one might paint en plein air (as well as from life, imagination and memory).  We dealt briefly with dealing with the moving sun - put in the shadows and darks, work quickly, use a simplified palette, use of a thumbnail to plan, squinting, and then stopping the thinking process to paint.  We did an informal show and tell before lunch and at the end of the day aimed at seeing if the "Concept" was achieved.  One always learns from this exercise.

"Interesting Colour Strategy"

There were numerous motifs to choose from.  The "Ruins" was a favourite.

"Squint for Shapes, Value, and Edges"

I did a quick demo showing the difference between starting with an outline (to fill in a la colouring book) as opposed to "massing".  We talked about shadows, getting the eye to go where you want it to go, and how the eye works.

Greenhouse, 7x12, Oil on Board

Everyone managed to take a couple of images at least to the point where they could finish off in the studio.  Colour strategies were well done by the group.  Now to keep on painting.

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