Friday, June 28, 2013

Plein Air

House on the Lake, Loudoun County, VA

Folks ask me:  what's plein air?

During warm weather, my heart, mind and soul look only towards painting outdoors.

Plein air the fresh air.  The French Impressionists did their share of painting in the fresh air and today there are more and more competitions across America where 20 - 30 professional painters are selected, by a judge,  to compete during a week of outdoor painting in a specific location.  The week culminates in well advertised sales events where collectors are invited to purchase.  And the collectors of plein air paintings are certainly out there. Prizes are awarded.  Photographs are taken. Magazine articles are written.

Professional artists who participate in these events are honored to be selected for an event.  It's wonderful to be chosen by a judge who probably has many registered artists to select from.  Artists are often housed with a host family, who try to make their adopted artiste comfortable when they're painting in their town.  Working outdoors - all day -  is not easy.  Artists are expected to come up with a specified number of framed and finished pieces for the sales events.  There's a good bit of pressure involved in finishing up, and finishing up WELL.  It can be oppressively hot, or rainy/ paintings may dry too quickly or not fast enough/ they may not turn out as well as expected/ chatty pedestrians can break concentration/ things fall/ wind blows/ hunger calls or even worse....

Collectors of art.....we thank you for your belief in our work and your love of what we do.  It's collectors who help the artist continue to think and paint and create.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Renew, Refresh, Revitalize

While I am preparing for the Western Loudoun Studio Tour  ( this weekend, I'm also taking these weeks to walk more, meditate more, exercise, breathe in the summer honeysuckle, watch my nearby creek tumble along, battle birds stealing applies from  my trees,  sketch, photograph, paint outdoors (just for myself and no one else)  and garden a little.  I need to go into that private place where I go when I'm painting. I need some refreshing....badly.  I believe I have been suffering from exhaustion....and now for some renewal....