Thursday, October 11, 2012

Plein Air Workshop: Millheim, Pennsylvania - Day 2

After a crisp start to the morning, the sun quickly warmed up the valley around Elk Creek.  But first, we met in the studio, where I reviewed some of the concepts I shared the day before, and then I talked more about color palettes and the choices available to the plein air oil painter and pastelist.  I also discussed the relationship of value to color, and how best to handle the relationships of cool and warm colors in the landscape.  (The students have been bearing up well under my lectures, especially since my talks are accompanied by good coffee, chocolate chip cookies and humor!)

Once things warmed up, we drove off to a beautiful farm (Chicory Lane Farm) not far from town.  The farm is actually a conservation area with trails, expansive tracts of wildflowers and - best of all for plein air painters - views.  We were scattered in a ring around the central house and barn, and that made for a pleasant walk as I went from easel to easel, offering help.  I also did an oil demonstration of the barn and silo before turning students loose to paint.  At the end of the day, we headed back to the Green Drake studio for critiques.  Really, these critiques are more of a show-and-tell session in which we share our efforts, and I used the paintings to illustrate concepts we talked about earlier in the day.

That evening, Trina and I met Karl Eric Leitzel, founder of Green Drake Gallery and Landscape Artists International, and his wife, Linda, for dinner at the Elk Creek Cafe.  Some of our students were there, too, enjoying the evening's music.  I had to leave a little earlier than I'd hoped, as I had to proof a galley of an article of mine for The Artist's Magazine and also get started on interviewing the winners of a well-known art competition.  (Sorry, but you'll have to wait until the winners are officially announced!)

Below are two of my demonstrations.  The first is my studio pastel from the first day and the other, the plein air oil from today.  (Both 9x12.


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