Sunday afternoon I painted a demo at our Plein Air Austin quarterly meeting. I basically did one of my "30 minute starts" on a 20x24 canvas. They timed me! I hope I was able to share some good info while painting. When painting like that, my brain has to be tuned totally to the task of getting paint on and making quick decisions. I have no idea what I said!
The idea of doing a quick start is that you can respond to a scene with all the energy and excitement that drew you to it at first. Once you quickly make those big marks, you can then slow down and work more carefully developing your focal point, correcting edges, etc. Its especially important to be able to work quickly when painting outdoors. The light can change so quickly that you may be continually updating your painting if you work for an hour or more. I see people who work for 2+ hours on a small scene and they are just noodling it to death.
By focusing just on shapes of color/value and exaggerating gesture at the start, I can retain more of the loose expressive strokes at the end of painting. Its very difficult to go back into a fully developed painting and make it more expressive.
A Painter's Journal
Chasing the light. Capturing life.
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