Comments Welcome

Weekly Paintings By National Award Winning Artist Terry d. Chacon

Friday, May 8, 2009

Canyon Lakes Art Association Demonstration

When asked to do a demonstration for the Canyon Lakes Art Association in Canyon Lakes, Ca., I thought they might want a dog portrait demo. No, they wanted a Plein Air demo. My friend and fellow artist Louise Smith drove down with me. I had never been to this beautiful little community tucked back off the 215 freeway, but I can certainly can see why so many people would want to live there. Beautiful paintings are everywhere. To do plein air inside is always tricky, let alone at night. But I said I would give it a try. I decided I would bring along a painting that I had completed on location and a photo and and give them my approach. Hopefully at least they would get some pointers on Plein Air. Painting inside under lights was indeed different for me but I did manage to come up with a nice painting.
First I talked with them about Plein Air. Telling them what I look for when I arrive on location. How I set up my easel, about time, temperature, sounds and how all of these really takeover your creations. You can have 5 artist painting the exact subject and you will get 5 totally different paintings, none are wrong, they are just different. You can go back and paint the same subject and each time your painting will be different. This is what I love about Plein Air. When I asked if anyone in the group (about 40) had ever painted in Plein Air I got one show of hand. So I knew my approach would probably be very different for them, but I also wanted to point out why I love painting in Plein Air oppose to studio paintings from photographs.

I love this photo. Boy was I into what I was talking about and Louise caught me really stressing my point!!! LOL. I continued with the beginning of the painting separating the painting canvas into large masses. I painted them each a different color. The shadow areas are painted with cool colors, the light/sunny areas are painted with warm colors. It is just big shapes. I had to laugh after the demo was over as many of the people in attendance said when I started they thought "Oh my, I have never seen anyone start a painting like that". Louise said there was quite a bit of talk in the audience. Always good to take along an observer to listen to what people are saying. She said two ladies sitting near her starting talking with each other and really didn't even watch the demo for quite sometime. One of them looked up as I was more into the painting and said "WOW, look at what she has done". One of the ladies came up and also told me of the same story and how they had never seen this and really enjoyed my approach.

I continued working on the scene. I was trying to get the right side of the painting completed so they could see how those large masses would be refined down to resemble the photo. I only had 1 1/2 hours to complete the painting and that was with talking about each step in between.

They had their break about this time and I had finished the right side and front. Joan (their program director) said I could keep painting or take a break. I opted to continue painting as I figured I just needed the left side and the painting would be just about finished, minus some last minute details to make certain areas pop.

I brought in a painting that I used as reference and donated it for their raffle. This very nice lady who was not a member of the group, won the raffle. Boy was she excited. She had brought her very nice father to the demo and they were both so gracious and complimentary.

I finished the painting, just needed the flowers in the foreground which I added the next morning.
It was a really great evening. They seem to really enjoy the process and a lot of them said they would really like to try Plein Air and was very thankful for me coming down. They would like to have a workshop in the future and asked if I would come down and give a workshop. I told them yes. What a nice group of enthusiastic people. I am looking forward to spending more time with this group. Thank you for having me. Until next time, ENJOY THE ART. Terry d. Chacon

1 comment:

  1. Looks like you impressed the Canyon Lake Studio Artists, Terry. Plein Air Art has a way of evolving on the canvas or panel and can transform artists and how they approach painting. Congratulations on making the connection with a new group of Converts !!

    Debbie K


Comments without signatures will not be posted on my blog. If you want me to reply, please put in your email address. Thanks, Terry d. Chacon