Thursday, July 10, 2008

Plein Air Painting a Day or Aimless Wandering?

I was fortunate to have been accepted into the 2008 Pacific NW Plein Air Painting Competition. Only after getting the acceptance letter did I realize how difficult it would have been for me if I had not been accepted………interesting. But then I came to the quick realization that I needed to get more practice for the competition. I need to practice plein air painting every day!

I have mentioned before that this is not easy, this painting outdoors. I have mentioned the weather, the bugs, and the snakes, did I mention the weather? Today I found another problem with painting outdoors, and that is the selection of what to paint! I left the house about 6:00 am with my backpack and easel. Within an easy one-mile radius of our house one could paint fields of wild flower, a small river, groves of oak trees, and even distant mountains. This morning I walked, and walked, I climbed up over rocks and fallen logs, until my legs were trembling with fatigue and found nothing to paint. I came back down the hill and finally settled on a scene of backlit grasses and flowers, near where I started.

The lesson today was on selection, and learning to not be so picky. How can a person not find something to paint when surrounded by such beauty? Maybe this can be learned and ideas will come easier with practice. So I am going to try and paint a plein air painting a day. With all that is within an easy one-mile hike, I should be able to fulfill this commitment and get the practice I need for the competition.

1 comment:

Celeste Bergin said...

Brilliant! I think you are right...that painting in Oregon should be "easy"! (at least chosing the scene!) There is so much here to try to tell in a painting. You are doing a wonderful job of it, Donna!