Tuesday, April 04, 2006

THE TROUBLE WITH PLEIN AIR PAINTING


When I began painting twenty three years ago I was afraid commuting to a studio would seem like going to an office. I painted in our living room, our dining room, our sitting room, and most romantically out of doors in Monet’s plein air. I quickly discovered there is no such thing as plain air! I was chased by a bull I thought was a cow in Wales; thrashed by a sand storm on a beach in Normandy; and I watched helplessly as my painting floated down a river during a lunch break in the Catskills. Finally I had the perfect experience! It was a magnificent day. The sights and sounds and smells of the country were flowing through my body onto the canvas. A magical force was guiding my brush. I was experiencing the essence of plein air painting! Just at this moment a woman walked by and said to her child, “Look at the nice man painting, dear. Just like you do in kindergarten!”

1 Comments:

Blogger argos said...

Straight up funny!

I once was painting plein air with a friend in southern Colorado. A dust devil thingy came by, wiped us out and, sand-blasted all of the previously applied oil from the canvas. I mean completely.

On another occasion, a group of rogue bandito youth aproached. They pulled guns saying this was private property. I told them to fuck off. They came closer, stared at the painting for a minute, then they left. One hour later they came back again. They approached again and one had his hand in his pocket, as if with gun. I thought I was going down. He pulled it out only to reveal a budweiser which he offered to me and said "man, your painting is bueno."

It was a real "Joan Wilder" moment for me.

8:04 AM  

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