Saturday, September 10, 2011

I'm gathering things together for plein aire painting in the beautiful Brandywine Valley.

It takes a tremendous amount of coordination and organization to prepare for these events. I have to order frames and mats ahead of time, and have my painting surfaces pre cut. I don't enjoy painting to a pre determined size, but in plein aire competitions, the artist must turn in completed paintings that are beautifully framed for the final sales. So, I'm already thinking, one month ahead of the contest, of what I might paint and what size the pieces will be.

I have to organize all of my supplies and be sure that I don't forget anything. There may not be art supply stores available to meet my needs. Also, I need to plan my time carefully to be sure that not ONE MINUTE is wasted that could be used for painting during the limited times I will be allowed on the sites that are on the list. Most sites can only be visited for six to eight hours on a specified day.

So my mind and goals must be fine tuned: I must know where I'm going to paint each day, have a good idea what sort of subject I'll paint and I must know EXACTLY what size I'll be working towards because I have a limited number of complete frames that I'm taking with me.

I'm a studio painter. Most of my plein aire pieces are more difficult for me because they must be completed in one day. In the studio, I can just.... take my time.

Meanwhile, in the studio, I'm painting sheep. I'm attaching a photograph here to muse upon....