I love painting outside. There is something magical about feeling the sun on your face, a cool breeze on your arm, and the sounds and smells of the outdoors while observing the shapes and colors of the landscape. Plus I enjoy the challenge of painting an ever-changing scene as the light changes and the wind moves clouds.
Plein Air painting, or translated from French, simply painting outside, was popularized by the 19th century Impressionists and made possible by advances in painting technology such as paint in tubes. Before this, artists ground their paint by hand.
Painting and drawing from life are an important part of my practice as an artist. Observing the effects of light on color and shape, and translating that into paint keeps my eyes and hand sharp. These images work themselves into my abstract pieces as well – a memory of a particular color or shadow or shape – all these elements play into my abstract paintings.