Admittedly it's been a long time, okay, a really long time since I've painted outside of a studio. I could count on both hands the number of times I've hauled around painting supplies to make work "on location." Maybe once or twice a semester during undergrad, my painting professor (who I adored) would have us schlep our crap around campus (see, I told you it has been a really long time) and we would spend the next couple hours "looking busy" but not making anything substantive.
I remember being told that "youth is wasted on young" and I have come to the conclusion that much of college is also wasted on the young. That painting professor I adored? He taught us how to build panels, stretch canvas, and showed us the occasional slideshow but I don't remember learning how to actually paint. I'm sure he was willing and tried to share his knowledge. Or maybe he was just waiting for us to ask. I realize more and more the chances I let slip away. So many opportunities to question, to learn, and to improve... all wasted on youth.
No more. This fall I am attending a couple workshops (which I am excited beyond words about) that each require plein air experience and I hardly consider myself experienced in this type of painting, So in an effort to avoid humiliating myself, I've decided to get a little practice in before I travel across the country and embarrass everyone who knows and loves me. Besides, I figure I can embarrass myself just fine here on this blog. So stay tuned.
After two days "in the field" here's what I know: it's really hard (read: nearly impossible) for me to work on only one painting at a time. Harder still? Trying to actually finish that one painting in one sitting. Sure, I had similar issues during my 30 in 30 painting challenge but this plein air stuff takes it to a whole new level. If I got frustrated or stuck during my 30 in 30 paintings, I could walk away for a little bit. Not so when you're racing the clock and chasing the light. Once you start it, you're in it.
Here's hoping my painting and my focus improve.