Plein Air Austin group at 43rd Street

Much of the beginning of the month was not very creative as I was scanning in old photos for my Dad as an aid for his speech therapy. It was good to look at all the old photos especially of my Grand-parents as they have been gone for a long time now and all we have are memories. But we are luckier than other generations because we have all these wonderful photos. I wish I had photos of my great grandparents as well.

This morning I joined up up with a group of like minded artists and sketched on a busy street in Austin in an area called Hyde Park. It still has some character which is sadly disappearing as Austin gets larger by the day.

I am not use to this type of working and it is daunting to working out in the public but it was surprising how easy it was to forget about all the people milling around as I struggled to work out what I was doing.  It was a bit like doing a puzzle.




I started by putting down an acrylic under-painting. I had forgotten to pack my pencils so did a very quick pen outline before I started. I knew from the beginning I just wanted to concentrate on the shapes and colours, so I kept it very loose. I ended working on it for an hr and 40 mins.

Working outside is still very much a work in progress. I am still overwhelm with all the information that is in front of me which was pretty obvious as I worked on this. It was like working on a jigsaw puzzle. You put down one mark and then as you work, it is obvious that previous mark is in the wrong place.  The light today was also not the best with a grey drizzle which flatten out everything. If I had been painting this yesterday, the building would have had clearly delineated sides. Today, there was barely a colour shift on the top part of the building.


end piece

By the time we left the place was really getting busy with the lunchtime crowd as there were about 4 restaurants in the immediate area and the red car had left a good while before.

So now I have to figure out how this practice is going to work into the direction I am working at home. At the moment, I am still working on the bjp project but that should be finished by the end of this week (end of Feb) and then I am going to start a felt project project using the sketches I have been doing over the past year.  I am also considering using the still life paintings I did last year. I am ready to move onto the next stage.

Next Thursday we are going to a wedding revenue in the Hill Country which had lots of landscape plus traditional buildings. Weather is meant to be good so should be a good day for painting.