I'm making it my mission to get outside more often to paint this Fall. I was convinced by a camping trip last weekend, when the leaves had just started to turn and the weather was perfectly cool and sunny. Some charming farm animals at our campsite were an extra bonus.
I've missed painting on site in a sketchbook, a task usually reserved for when I'm traveling somewhere far away in order to document my time there. We were only an hour away from home, but that corner of Connecticut felt completely different! Watching the chickens meander around our campsite (one almost wandered into a tent) seemed straight out of a storybook. So I followed that imaginative moment and put a little extra whimsy into my painting. This sketch was quick and fun and was finished by headlamp after the campfire went out.
Wanting to continue the outdoor adventures, I asked my friend and Plein Air painter, Mo Myra ( momyraillustrations.etsy.com ) to paint outside with me. We picked a spot in Elizabeth Park that overlooks the Hartford skyline. It was a beautiful day among the roses and I learned so much from her personal experience as a working artist and enjoyed her enthusiasm as she would spontaneously exclaim, "I LOVE painting so much." We decided to aim for a weekly painting session together, at least while the weather holds!
Not only is there so much to learn from painting outdoors; the shifting light, capturing the depth and variety in a landscape, but it is also a way to savor the season. Living in New England, with our everlasting Winters, I'll take any opportunity to enjoy Fall while it's here.