11x14 inches, acrylic on canvas
Later today I am headed back to Beloit for an artists' reception for the plein air event that is wrapping up today. We get to meet the sponsors, vote for a "people's choice" award, and hear who won the purchase award prizes. After that the paintings will be displayed for sale for a month, with a commission on any sales going to the Friends of Riverfront, who organizes the event.
It was an interesting week. Thee weather presented real challenges. The day I painted this tree it was sunny and nice enough, but the wind buffeted my easel, the palette, my hat. The acrylic paint I brought dried almost immediately, event though I misted it over and over. Still, I was happy enough with my "Fauve" tree. The shape was simplified, the colors exaggerated.
11x14 inches, acrylic
Later in the week I decided to try another view of the park, this time featuring more trees and a bit of downtown Beloit in the distance. Once more I went for simplified shapes and intense color choices. Most of the colors were straight from the tube, or mixed with only a couple colors. The day I painted this was actually pretty nice, though it was the start of very hot weather that continued until yesterday. Monday through Wednesday it was in the 90s, and very humid. I tried painting Wednesday morning, but gave up at noon and returned home to my air conditioning with little completed. I turned in both completed framed paintings yesterday.
Whether or not the paintings win awards or sell, I did gain some confidence in painting outdoors. I have better equipment than before, and a better sense of what I need and what I can get along without. I also have lost some of my initial fear of people casually coming up to chat while I work. I also enjoyed reading about the Fauve painters, and had fun trying out my interpretation of their painting style, so I count the experience as a success.