vendredi 12 octobre 2007


This simple watercolor was drawn at a rest stop near Sicamous BC. If I remember correctly, I drew the image across the seam of my sketch book with a permanent tip Faber Castell pen on site and then added watercolor later using my Sennelier pan colors. Notice how I added journal notes on the right. I feel it is important for the artist to not always paint on good watercolor paper. Painting on ordinary paper now and then just for fun permits one to loosen up and only state the essentials. Somehow the artist’s signature is more evident in these quick drawings. If one gets into this ordinary paper sketching habit often this “immediacy” or “fresh” feeling will flow over into the more finished studio paintings.

I traveled west to British Colombia this summer and back and encountered only one plein air painter near Glacier National Park who answered my query, "Why are there so few outdoor, or rather, plein air painters?" by the statement: "You have to have a bit of an ego to paint outdoors". Was not the exhortation to get out of the studio uttered by many of the impressionist painters? What has happened? I feel I have a duty to invite artists to once again go back outdoors to sketch and paint.

That being said, let's define our terms. Painters who paint at street art fairs or symposiums are not necessarily plein air painters. They don't necessarily go outside on a regular basis and sketch and paint what they see in front of them. Most painters at street fairs paint from photos or from sketches or from imagination or invention.

Let's not fool ourselves. A very very high percentage of, or most figurative painters paint from or are inspired by the photograph. Nothing wrong with that if one knows how to use a photo. More about that on a future blog.

My main goal in publishing and sharing my ideas in this blog is simple: Incite and invite artists and whoever visits this blog to get out of the studio now and then and gather information, inspiration and emotional feedback from sketches and studies done on site. Combine these with photo shoots at will. I hope my posted art works and technical tips will be of help.

All the artists who have or will give a free demonstration at Art Tec (Sherbrooke and Bleury) this fall on alternate Saturdays paint and sketch outdoors and draw from the motif. The watercolorist Helmut Ronacher who will give a demo October 20th at 1pm is a long-time outdoor painter and friend and newly elected sca member. Don’t miss seeing his performance next Saturday. I’m sure you will learn a lot from it.

Mon prochain blog, celui-là en français, vous expliquera en plus grand détail pourquoi j’ai initié ces démos au centre-ville.

Raynald Murphy

2 commentaires:

  1. Bravo!
    Tu as trouvé à la fois ton style et ta manière de diffuser ta pensée.
    J'aime beaucoup tes croquis, ils sont spontanés, colorés et représentent l'essentiel.

  2. bravo ray je trouve tes commentaires tres pertinants et je crois que croquer en nature regénaire le corps et l'esprit
    encore bravo , on se rejase den