I am hooked! Once I discovered plein air (outdoor) painting, nothing has been the same. A morning spent watching the sun and clouds change the landscape in front of my eyes and working to capture a portion of it with paint, is exciting, satisfying and poetically peaceful. This experience carries over to the studio. There I use my outdoor studies as guides to express a statement in a larger studio painting.
I use oil paint or gouache for outdoor studies. Often I will begin with charcoal drawings to work out value and composition. In the studio, I find oil paint works beautifully to create soft, expressive composites of the elusive quality of light on objects. While plein air paintings are usually created quickly to capture an interesting light pattern, object relationship, or feeling, my studio paintings are an opportunity to explore and interpret a view, an object, or a figure. There I clarify what I am trying to communicate to the viewer and why I chose to do the painting at all.