I find it hard to get out there with the easel and paints and just start creating. I liken it to getting out to exercise. Sometimes it’s just hard to get past the comforts of home and get out there. I took a workshop in plein air painting recently and really enjoyed it. It is a whole new world for painting, I think it stretches your creative muscles much more than painting in a studio from photos. I even went so far as to buy a painting box meant for this activity as the French easel I bought was so huge and clunky compared to what all the other students had. Not to mention I brought every brush I own and the instructor teased me about it. It really does helps to have the right equipment and not a stitch more. The idea of lugging a huge easel, all the paints, turpentine, brushes, towels, canvas or boards, etc. to some beautiful remote location made me forget the idea the minute I considered it. Taking photos was a much more appealing option.
I just came across this great article by Lori McNee which I really does give that needed motivation to get out there and paint! http://www.finearttips.com/2011/03/10-motivating-tips-for-the-plein-air-painter/. Read it and subscribe to her blog, she’s full of good information for artists.
Below is a slideshow to give you a glimpse of the fun I had at Frank Serrano’s urban painting workshop, in and around downtown Los Angeles.