Plein Air Newbie, 2017

Plein Air #1 / 1.11.17 / 8×10 acrylic
Van Gogh Park, Granada Hills, CA
“The Dry Stream Wasn’t!”

OK, not a perfect newbie, exactly, but just about.

Four or five years ago I tried plein air painting; that is, landscape painting on location. I got wind of a group in Thousand Oaks through a couple ladies at a class I was taking. I went maybe five times, and the whining was out of control…it was too far, too sunny, too cold, too hot, too green, my paints were drying out…an “I don’t like anything about this”-annoying experience. Fortunately those kind ladies were never painting within earshot. I gave it up and felt rather guilty every time I saw the plein air painting schedule go by.


Last month, in December, I managed to get a group of painting ladies together from the church. I was surprised when the “one person” I hoped to paint with turned into five. We’re calling ourselves C-LAF, for Christian Ladies’ Art Fellowship. We are now meeting once a month to paint together. Two of the ladies, Carol and Jane, already go out into the wild to paint each week. I joined them for the first time on January 11.

PLEIN AIR #1. This is what you can do in two hours, if you’re me, and Know Not what you’re doing. I’m happy enough, knowing it will take a whole year of these outings to get myself organized. I thought I didn’t care for landscape, but now I am strangely encouraged. I will post each week, hoping to see a progression (…and improvement, darnit!…) as I work through the process.

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