Don't chase the Light

Subject at 3:00 late afternoon

Subject at 5:00 same day

Here is an example of how much the lighting can change on a subject while you're out painting. Comparing the photos its easy to see the drastic differences, but on site it is harder to see. The changes kind of sneak up on you.
I began this painting trying to anticipate what the light would do. I locked in my darks and then laid in my large shapes with a general color and saved the bright yellow orange colors for last.
If I had tried to paint in the light areas first, they were changing so fast, I would have been adjusting all the colors the whole time. You hear plein air painters instruct "don't chase the light" and this is what they are talking about. You can see in my finished painting that the lighting is somewhere in between the two photos.

"Chasing the Light" 8x10


"Ready to Work" 8"x 10"

The overcast weather was giving me fits during this painting and it resulted in a different palette of colors than my usual work. The light was constantly in a flux. I don't think this one scanned in very good. It looks better in real life.

Dads Old Truck Revisited

"Dad's Old Truck" revisited 9" x 12"

I wasn't happy with this painting when I posted it a few weeks ago, so I picked it up and went at it again. I added a glaze with Ultramarine Blue and Liquin to most of the shadow areas and applied a thicker and cleaner highlight to the front fender. I don't normally paint on my plein air work after it's dry, but I think this improved it and I'm happier with the final product.

Get Off My Lawn!

"The Tree Swing" 12" x 16"

I have wanted to paint this house for some time and I found my chance when I saw the owners out front doing some yard work. I walked up to the lady of the house and she seemed delighted that I wanted to paint on her land. So I set up my easel right off the sidewalk on the corner of their property and got to painting. I selected a 12" x 16" canvas which is larger than my typical size so right then I knew I was in for some work. About twenty minutes in the man of the house sees me and makes a bee line towards me looking very confused and not very happy that I was in his yard. I explained who I was and that I had asked permission from his wife because he was on a riding lawn mower at the time. After what seemed like much hesitation he told me I could continue. For the next two hours I was stared at and given the evil eye. My wife came out to check on me and quickly noticed the way I was being looked at. The man wanted no part of me being on his land or cared about looking at what I was doing. Then he walked over and told me I was done because he wanted to mow the grass I was standing on even though he had just done it when I walked up. Very confusing. The lady of the house had asked me to show it to her when I finished but I felt like I needed to leave. The painting was officially done.

Weird day, but hopefully worth it.