This post is about a little practice I’ve been doing a lot of lately. It’s like plein air (on location) painting except it’s done in the studio.
Sometimes after I’ve been doing a lot of ‘official’ painting I want to paint but I just want to have some fun. So I search all my photos for one that speaks to me and without any preliminary work – no thumbnails, no practice, no pondering I just quickly sketch the subject and jump right in. I always work small sitting in front of the computer not at my painting table.
I set a time limit of 60 – 90 minutes and work out everything on the fly. There are always surprises that happen. Each painting seems to include subjects or effects that I’ve never tried before and I don’t have time to think and plan I just do, in one sitting. They aren’t always great paintings but they are always fun and I find that I learn quite a bit each time. It’s always a surprise when I finish them and put them on the wall. Usually I’m quite pleased. The goal would be that some of them might end up as ‘serious’ paintings.
Here are 4 recent examples.
This one did work out really well and I’m very happy with it. I plan to use this as a teaching painting in my next workshop in Winnipeg for Leading Edge Workshops.
This image from my favourite location, Kensington Market is a painting that I’ve wanted to do for over a year just because of the bright yellow and red cab.
A practice for a large painting I’m doing for an up coming show.
A scene from a very neat, eclectic town on the old TransCanada Highway in BC called Yale.
This little painting practice is just a fun activity that keeps me thinking painting but is relaxing and spontaneous and also does yield a number of benefits. Very much like plein air painting but done in the comfort of the studio. Something you might want to consider.