Tuesday, May 27, 2014

PPAP Beach Getaway!

Over the Memorial Day weekend the PPAP hit the beach and boardwalk in Atlantic City for some sun, surf and plein air painting.The weather couldn't have been better, it was Goldilocks weather both days, and the beaches were crowded but not as packed as they will be later in the season when the weather and water will be a lot warmer.

 The water must still be around 60 degrees and I only dipped into it up to my waste once for about 4-5 minutes before I was chilled to the bone.

Atlantic City is a fun place to paint and I want to go back and paint off the boardwalk back into the city itself. there are some pretty cool and very Edward Hopperesque buildings and spots to paint.

It gets kind of dicey pretty quick and the "magic' of the board walk doesn't stretch a block. But its in that area that you can also find interesting spots to paint some very interesting urban scenes. Lots of old and falling away places in AC that might be gone with the next hurricane of some new casino. We came across a very friendly stray cat while coming off the boardwalk and found out he was one of the many alley cats that are taken care of by the  cool organization Alley Cat Allies who look after strays and take care of the many stray cats in Atlantic City and elsewhere.

The first day Will and Alina took me to a spot they had searched out already since they were staying in AC a few days before me. It was a bit of a hike was a hike to get to the spot with my gear but I had a good view of the pier and waves which increased in intensity as the tide came in. In fact I finished the painting just as the tide swamped over the spot I was in. Not being familiar with the tide we tried to gage how far up the beach it would come.

Since I didn't have an umbrella ( I'll be buying one for my easel) and Will gets sunburned pretty easy, we parked under one of the piers the first and second day to paint. Alina parked herself a lot further up toward the boardwalk.

Even on the second day I had to move as the tide came in suddenly and washed over my spot.

Will painted with gouache and set up right near me.  I busted out my rig, set up quick, making sure to really push it down in the sand to avoid it getting blown over by the wind, which was pretty stiff at times and having painted off the Delaware I know at any time a sudden blast can sent my whole rig tumbling down.

We had plenty of onlookers and commenters the whole weekend. I passed out a few business cards as well to some interested folks who I hope will contact me. Its funny, you have basically two types of people, those who stop and admire, even chat a bit and others who will walk right in front of you and block your view like a dullard.

As always its a race against the sun or clouds, it might start out clear as a bell and in 30 minutes the clouds or marine layer or haze will roll in. You have to plan and try and watch and judge the sky as you work. One the second day Alina rented an umbrella to paint on the beach.

The first painting was on one of the Source Tek's panels with the awesome Claessens Belgian linen. I love these panels! The second panel I used was made by my buddy David Golas, and that was great too. 

                                     My set-up at the end of the day as the tide came rushing in.

I took these paintings as an excuse to try and paint water again, and I looked at some Sorolla, Sargent and Zorn. Will brought along some books by them to look at in the evenings back in the hotel.

It was good to get away for a few days and we'll be back at the easels in the next week somewhere around Philly.

Here is the weekend's haul of paintings  by Alina, Will and myself.

 Alina's paintings

Will's paintings


My paintings

1 comment:

  1. Michael, what advice do you have for a beginning plein air painter? I finally have the time and motivation to do this something I've always wanted to do, but don't don't know where to begin.

    Deborah Fries, Elkins Park