Warm in November, Oil on Linen, 12x16
(reworked December 2. More sunshine added December 14.)
Anticipation was the name of the game here. There were just enough clouds in the sky that I suspected that the the golden hour was going be fantastic. So I set up in a location where I figured I would have a good composition and color without being blinded by the setting sun. Then it was a matter of planning the painting so I would be able to capture the illusive colors as quickly as possible when they appeared. I was constantly asking myself questions like, "where will that shadow be in an hour? What color will the grass be when the sky turns yellow. When you look at a plein air painting, you should be able to tell what time of day it is. Forget the fact that it took the artist 3 or 4 hours to complete the painting, during which time the lighting was constantly changing.
There is a great video you may have seen on public TV this week. It was made during the Grand Marais Paintout this summer. I competed in that paint out but not the "quick paint" portion which the video focuses on. I think the producers did a great job of capturing what a plein air painter is up against. Click here to watch the video. You'll see some friends of mine in action.