Monday, November 30, 2009

Sarasota Plein Air Workshop - Day 1

On our first day, I took the workshop out to Sarasota's Bayfront Park to demonstrate in oil. Although boats can be a troublesome subject - even when they aren't being spun around by wind and tide - I wanted to show how you can simplify even something like that. The park had a number of boats, Sea Doos and other watercraft docked down by the tiki bar. Although the warm color of the water and the deep mangrove shadows are what caught my eye, I wanted to bring in a sense of the boats, but without getting lost in the busy-ness. Using my viewfinder, I isolated one, a nice sailboat with a blue sail cover, and then zoomed out to bring in just enough design elements to make a pleasing composition.

"Bayfront Boat" 9x12, oil

Blocking in the boat was fairly simple, since I was seeing it bow-on most of the time. A few strokes suggested shadow and light plus the main parts that say "boat" - mast, float and sail cover. One doesn't need to get too concerned about drawing, since a certain looseness overall makes the boat seem just right.

The weather was perfect today, and it looks like it'll hold for at least one more day. Tomorrow, we'll head over to Myakka River State Park to paint some of the lush river scenery.

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