Plein Air – Forest Preserves

October 13, 2010

October 5, 2010, Oil on Canvas 11" x 14"

I started my six mile run a little later than I had planned (hard to get out of the house before sunrise). My run and recovery took me a little longer than I anticipated. I took some time to address a couple e-mail concerns, excuses, excuses.

Nice weather again. Not sure how long this good weather will last. Clawed and I traveled south of Rockford.  I can see some scenes that would work great with landscape canvas. Being that it is this late already, I don’t feel that I can do the larger canvas. Remember the sights for another day. I would have to keep today’s painting smaller.

We settled at a forest preserve near the airport. During the time that we were painting, no one drove through the park. Almost eerie to spend that much time in a beautiful spot and never see anyone else enjoying the park. Oh well, it worked for us.

I found this scene and set up my gear. I encountered a problem during set up. I decided to use my umbrella to ensure shade on my canvas and palette. As I opened the umbrella, I heard the chink of steel hitting the pavement. A small metal piece which enables the umbrella to stay open, popped out of the shaft. I spent a few moments figuring out how to get it back in the shaft and working again.

After solving the umbrella issue, I immediately started painting. Later it dawned on me that I should have taken a few moments to make a quick value sketch of the scene before starting to paint. This would have helped me “freeze” the shadow and light patterns which had attracted me.  As the light through the trees shifted, my attention kept getting drawn away from my initial inspiration. Another lesson learned, I hope.

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