Thursday, January 06, 2011

Winter Landscapes

January 6, 2011 - Happy New Year everyone! I paint plenty of summer, spring & fall plein air paintings, but I am a wimp when it comes to painting outdoors in the winter. Usually, if I paint landscapes in the winter, I sit in my car with heat on, and paint little studies using watercolor and gouache. Well, today I decided to try out my "Winter" set-up to see if I could manage an outdoor oil.

In the top picture, you can see my set-up. I am using an Open Box M easel that is attached to a tripod. Jack made the little palette box, and I premixed 6 strings of colors in 6 value steps. I have the easel opened all the way, so that the mixing area is fairly vertical. Jack made the panel, and it is coated with homemade gesso from Sarti chalk, which is somewhat absorbent, and toned with rabbit skin glue and dry pigment.

My footwear wasn't really adequate for the cold, so I put down a foam mat to stand on, so it could insulate me from the snow. I wore thin woolen gloves, but handwarmers would have helped.

I painted for around 1 hour and 25 minutes, or until my fingers were too stiff and cold to move, and the result is this little 8"x10" study. It was a fun start to the new year and I hope to do many more winter plein air studies!