Class Notes: Painting OUT

In July and August all my classes go outside to paint en plein air - and I can't remember such a rainy summer.  Colorado weather, in any season makes for hardy painters - but some of my students are feeling tested;  both Tuesday and Thursday classes have had to paint in the rain.
 Bravo! to those of you who braved the elements. Not only does it make you more fearless - the finished piece, good, bad or indifferent, is your trophy for a job done in difficult circumstances - a badge of honor.
Last Tuesday evening we faced rain from the start and ended up finishing class in my studio; not all bad.  These occasions help develop expertise in other areas like working from sketches and memory.

Every time we paint out we are stretching our skill set - sometimes that means figuring out how to tear down quickly and carefully, remembering to take a quick photo - or do that all-important sketch.
The summer rains have pretty much ruined my sketch book - but that in itself is a trophy. I was OUT there.
The landscape is OUT there - don't miss it this summer.

This is of my pieces done during class - a small 6"x 8" of the Rio Grande River as the rain starts to fall. Small panels allow me to work with students and still finish a simple piece.  The operative term here is "simple" and I encourage students to keep the idea simple.  A simple landscape and a good view of the horizon make for the best sunset vistas.

Class Painters - I hope to see you all out there next week.