Last winter, I went to an art store that was closing down its business, and I bought on sale a simple, wooden pleinair easel. After my purchase, it took me a while to gather everything that I needed, including some courage to actually use that easel en pleinair painting. Finally, the day came, when after feeding my family in the morning and setting them off to work and schools, I took my easel, paints and canvas, along with a sketchbook and whole bunch of other art supplies and went on my painting adventure. I hadn’t painted en pleinair since art school so I was a little bit concerned about how the painting process would go with cold, winter weather conditions, other people watching me painting and my self doubt. I have to admit that self doubt is my biggest enemy that I have to fight almost every single day.
I did not take me long to find a painting spot since I have been planning to paint outside for a few months. There was a three story house that I saw on the way to YMCA, while driving my daughter to her swim practice twice a week that I wanted to paint. The house was old, big and blue and it was glowing on the gray, winter background.
When I started painting, all my fears disappeared. I forgot about cold weather, people watching me and found my comfort in painting. Painting from observation can be very calming. After years of painting from photographs, it felt so good to just observe the world with its colors and changing light and react without any expectations. Painting pleinair is a way of meditating. By the end of my session, my fingers were numb and my nose was drippy and red. I gathered my art supplies and went home.