Wednesday, January 22, 2014

BRRRRandywine Plein Air

This past week along with a bunch of hardy PPAP painters I went back out to paint in the brisk, brisk, OK--FRIGID outdoors along the Brandywine Creek on the grounds of the Brandywine River Museum. The weatherman promised it would be 45 out, but we all know how much the weatherman can lie.


I don't think it ever got higher than the mid 30's, if that before wind kicked up and the temp dropped  into the low 20's and we all felt like that scene in the movie Day After where the super freeze started frosting everything up in sight.

We started the day by visiting the museum and looking at the great paintings by Pyles, Cornwell and Wyeths and then having some lunch and taking art.  After Slugging down one more cup of joe we all headed into the cold to paint.

Gabriel, who is from LA and attend the MFA at PAFA with me said his feet had never been so cold.

Alina and will set up down the river from Gabriel and me and Sean set up about 40 yards up from me on the other side.

I had on 2 pairs of socks, sweat pants under my paints and a thick T and 2 layers of coats.  My hands still started to get cold though and my eyes would tear up. It was so cold off the river with the breeze that my phone actually died. I would have snapped more pics but even after I got in the car to try and warm it up it died again. When we were in the museum we were looking at a big painting by Edward Redfield who was a man's man, going out in all weather to paint plein air every day, carrying his large canvases out into the New Hope area and painting  some amazing snow scenes.

So how can we do any less, we painters of the 21st century? I was thinking how the shorter time and the cold really forces you to have to think. The cold makes you think--makes you think you want to go back inside before you toes burn from frostbite!

    The paint behaves different too it get thicker and sluggish so I did use liquin fine detail to cut it and keep it flowing.

One of the good things about returning to a place you have painted before you spend less time choosing a spot to paint. I love that rusty old train bride so i went for that, it was pretty sunny when we started but by the time we got going the clouds came in and it became very grey. Then the sun blasted out after the wind came through and I was able to finally punch back into the bed of middle values with some color and lighter values to catch the sun.

 When the sun came through it not only cleared the clouds away it also launched Alina's painting into the river which Will was just able to save before it was wept away as an offering to the Paint Gods.

                                                           Sean's strong block-in                 

                                                                     Here is my start
I was trying to keep it to big simple shapes and would keep re-massing if I got too picky too soon,  Finally with my hands to cold to paint anymore I packed it in along with the rest of the crew. It was a  fun day that gave us some good results.

 Alina's bold little painting after it's bath.                       Williams  striking bold little painting

My final painting. The sun coming back out really helped punch some light and color back into the landscape that i was able to work quick to take advantage of.

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