Plein Air - is it worth it?

Plein Air - is it worth it?

Painting outside one grey morning, wondering whether it was really worth all the effort

I planned to paint the early morning light on Friday on the North Downs near to my home. However on waking the sky was flat grey. Would it be worth bothering? Well, the car was packed so I headed off around 8.30am. On setting up my easel, there was a split in the low clouds where it looked like the sun might break through. Working on a warm grey primed canvas, the sun duly broke through so I started quickly with Naples Yellow and White, painting the crack in the clouds first (before it disappeared). Adding a cool top cloud above with Cobalt and Cadmium Red (plus Naples Yellow to grey this colour) and exaggerating the warm salmon cloud at the bottom of the sky (Naples and Cadmium Red again in my mixes). Yes, it was all worthwile! By the time I finished putting in the distant hills and foreground, the sun had gone and the light was flat again. I returned to a warm studio, happy to have made the effort. Lesson learned. Go out whatever the weather as you never know what you will find.
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In my view it's always worth it - painting a subject in front of you is so much more engaging than painting from photos.

So worth the effort.

It's beautiful. It was worth it definitely.

Agreed, definitely worth it Melanie. Terrific sky especially.

Thanks. Off again next week, this time to Bosham to paint the south coast. Can't wait!

Well worth it Melanie! A lovely painting.