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View Full Version : Les- Ultimate PA Easel design


les lull
02-18-2007, 11:03 PM
I didn't get anything painted over this last weekend, but I did manage to put together something to make the outdoor experience a little more familiar to the studio experience. I have a Frech Mistress that I use in my studio that I really like. I have both the pochade box and a french easel and I dislike them both. No place to put the brushes, no convienent place for a thinner cup or paint knifes. The French mistress solve the workspace dilemnas nicely in the studio, so I have been brainstorming how I could make that work outdoors without a 40 mule train to pack it in and out. Here is my solution. Since no one makes the outdoor easel of my dreams, I decided to make one with a french mistress, a place to mount the umbrella, and easily handle large canvases, and breaks down easily.

I used the tripod that came with my guerilla box and made what I hope to be the perfect solution. It is quite solid and versatile.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/18-Feb-2007/78858-IMG_2549.JPG

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/18-Feb-2007/78858-IMG_2550-1.JPG

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/18-Feb-2007/78858-IMG_2551.JPG

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/18-Feb-2007/78858-IMG_2552.JPG

I plan on testing it out this week, so I will let you know whether or not my personal excitement is warranted or not.:thumbsup:

Liz Abeyta
02-19-2007, 03:39 AM
Looks great, Les. I'll be waiting to hear how it works for you.

iron mark
02-19-2007, 09:36 AM
Looks just like the ones made here Art Box www.artboxandpanel.comwww.artboxandpanel.com

les lull
02-19-2007, 10:07 AM
Dammit! I could have been painting this last weekend instead of playing carpenter.:lol: That is uncanny. Here I was feeling all accomplished and original. That is almost an exact duplicate of my brainstorm. Note to self, do not send plans to patent office. It is even made in my home state. Good news is that if any one else is frustrated with a small workspace, and a difficult setup, You can buy one of these if you lack the carpentry skills. I guess I should get out of the studio more often.

Johnnie
02-19-2007, 12:33 PM
Hi Les
Well, look at it this way you saved yourself $200 bux minus the cost of wood you used.. far less I would presume.. It looks quite different that the other one posted at Art Box .. Main difference I see is the depth of the sides.. Much more room to put your tubes, brushes , knives etc... Very well done.

Now you have a palette and easel that ''you' designed for what you want.. It is very nice and you should be proud of making such a thing.. Also its something that may be handed down to your children one day, that you made .. not store bought.. There is something to be said about that ...

Great job. How about some closeups of your work.. Looks really cool.

Johnnie

manfrommerriam
02-19-2007, 03:04 PM
Well, I like yours just because you dreamed it up. You will get satisfaction from that. Not a bad idea and so it is not too amazing someone else had it also. Next will be one of aluminum... and then someone will make one from corrigated plastic sheets... and then someone will publish plans to make them from the cartons Neu-Pastels come in or perhaps antique cigar boxes.
Enjoy! have fun, Dave

les lull
02-19-2007, 09:21 PM
Hi Les
Well, look at it this way you saved yourself $200 bux minus the cost of wood you used.. far less I would presume.. It looks quite different that the other one posted at Art Box .. Main difference I see is the depth of the sides.. Much more room to put your tubes, brushes , knives etc... Very well done.

Now you have a palette and easel that ''you' designed for what you want.. It is very nice and you should be proud of making such a thing.. Also its something that may be handed down to your children one day, that you made .. not store bought.. There is something to be said about that ...

Great job. How about some closeups of your work.. Looks really cool.

Johnnie

Thanks Johnnie. The depth of the sides is one of the considerations I had in building this. I wanted it to be wide enough to hold full length studio brushes. That was a gripe of mine with the pochade box. Need a place for my java, pallet knife, camera, or a value study. It will hold a painting with a max width of 20 ".

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/19-Feb-2007/78858-IMG_2553.JPG

I am also enclosing a photo of how it attaches to the tripod. 2 reall easy to make L brackets made out of wood. No other hardware, gravity does the rest.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/19-Feb-2007/78858-IMG_2555.JPG

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/19-Feb-2007/78858-IMG_2556.JPG

Last but not least a photo of all three pieces broke down and this also shows the hardware that I found at Home Depot for the canvas holder.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/19-Feb-2007/78858-IMG_2559.JPG

MFER
02-19-2007, 10:30 PM
Les. here is my set up. It has been in use for 2 years with no problems. It is the same design as yours. I customized a Sun Eden Palette than is made of plastic. I built a 10 x16 box around their palette. Sun Eden has a good web site with very inexpensive and light weight products. Your looks much nicer and better built than mine. I can attest to your design will work and you'll love it esp. since you made it.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/19-Feb-2007/53029-DSCF0633.JPG
My Rig with how I set it up.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/19-Feb-2007/53029-DSCF0635.JPG

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/19-Feb-2007/53029-DSCF0636.JPG

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/19-Feb-2007/53029-DSCF0637.JPG

underside of paint box, thanks Mark

les lull
02-19-2007, 11:31 PM
Thanks for sharing pictures of your set up Mark. Glad to hear that you are satisfied with your similar set up. I am getting quite excited to take it for a test drive. I still need to get a piece of glass cut for mixing the paint on. I was going to float the piece of glass on four quarter sized dollops of silicone to absorb any unexpected abuse to the box.

By the way, that is a good looking painting on the easel. :thumbsup:

Johnnie
02-20-2007, 08:54 AM
Mark and Les.

Neat photos Les and nice box there Mark

Les, cant tell in the photo but those Lbrackets, are they made of plywood.. If not I would suggest you change them.. Looks like there is a grain there that over time could split on you from the weight and then the palette would end up on the ground..

Just a thought

Great job great photo's

Johnnie

WV.Artistry
02-21-2007, 03:01 AM
. . I am getting quite excited to take it for a test drive.

Hello from Scottsdale

I'd love to see how this all comes together, so if you don't mind, shoot me a PM and I'll come watch.

I've seen the art boxes at the Scottsdale Artist School and would like to compare theirs to yours . . glad you brought up brush length (I use long handles too). Have thought about purchasing a system, but I'm a bit ignorant re: plein air, and don't want something I can't use.

I'd rather be painting instead taking photos. Don't need much, just need the "how to".

http://i24.photobucket.com/albums/c11/r601020/Photojournal%20200702b/200701130ulc.jpg

Clothyard
08-31-2007, 05:43 PM
Hey Les, I am impressed!!!! I too am a woodworker as well as a painter (sorta) and I have just recently made my own pochade box from plans I got on the internet. It has drop in pallet/panel carrier and slide out shelves on each side for work room. I like it but this thing of yours will hold bigger panels and I suspect weighs less. The umbrella holder is a definite plus. Way to go!

James or Jimmy Jim
08-31-2007, 08:32 PM
Les, very impressive. I also tried to figure out a way to use my French companion in a similar way, but didn't follow through.

You might like this one, also made by a WC member (where is he?). :D

http://www.outsideshore.com/school/art/easel/pictures.htm

les lull
08-31-2007, 08:32 PM
Good Luck with your new setup Keith. This one looks lighter in the photos than it actually ended up being. I overbuilt the heck out of it. The piece of 3/8 inch glass didn't help at all. After I built this one I found a guy that makes a version that is quite reasonable. www.artboxandpanel.com (http://www.artboxandpanel.com) I bought the pallett and tripod canvas mount. I field tested it in the tetons for a couple of weeks and was very pleased with it. I was able to fit everything I needed into a backpack, including a raymar wetcanvas carrier. I really like having the pallet at waist level and the canvas at eye level. The extra space on the sides for a medium cup,a Holbein brush washer, tubes of paint and brushes make it easier to just focus on painting. I also had a tripod stool in my backpack for those days when you just can't stand up anymore and need to take a load off. I am sure not everyone would find this set up agreeable, but I found it to be a great solution for taking the studio outside. Here is a picture of the setup and the end of a long day.

http://www.wetcanvas.com/Community/images/31-Aug-2007/78858-IMG_3148-1.JPG

LarrySeiler
09-01-2007, 10:20 AM
dang a virtuoso with wood as well!

neat stuff...

well suited for sitting I was thinking, and the last photo seems to confirm that. What about standing, as I'm a stander?? Are you finding you have to hunch over to mix and grab paint?

I'm stink'n impressed!!!! :clap:

skipstah70
09-01-2007, 12:53 PM
Les... That set-up looks like a winner for sure. Quick.. get a patent on it!! I have a french companion that I use in studio and love it for the same reason as you.. it is a great flat space to lay everything on. The only thing I would caution you on is that the way you have attached the brace to the top cross piece of the mistress would seem to put a lot of stress on the side joints?! I have a Richeson model.. and I can say 100% that the dovetail joints they use to hold the sides and back together are crapola.. I've had to reinforce them both already (just from the stress of laying my turp jar on one of the side wings!). Your model looks to be a bit sturdier somehow though, so maybe it doesn't matter.

great little set-up ya gots! cheers, Mike

les lull
09-01-2007, 05:24 PM
Les, very impressive. I also tried to figure out a way to use my French companion in a similar way, but didn't follow through.

You might like this one, also made by a WC member (where is he?). :D

http://www.outsideshore.com/school/art/easel/pictures.htm

That is an ingenous little setup. :)

les lull
09-01-2007, 05:30 PM
dang a virtuoso with wood as well!

neat stuff...

well suited for sitting I was thinking, and the last photo seems to confirm that. What about standing, as I'm a stander?? Are you finding you have to hunch over to mix and grab paint?

I'm stink'n impressed!!!! :clap:

Thanks Larry. Sometimes I buy a stack of wood and end up with someting more that Sawdust.:lol:

This is my fourth kit Larry. I am a stander as well. The photo I posted was at the end of a long day and I was trying to get one more and I was so wasted that I could not stand anymore. This is the first set up where I felt like I was not fighting equipment, trying to find which cubby has that tube of paint I wanted, or feeling like the hunchback of Notre Dame. The pallet is waist level with the tripod extended and I am right at six feet tall. I believe you would find it quite comfortable.:)

les lull
09-01-2007, 05:35 PM
Les... That set-up looks like a winner for sure. Quick.. get a patent on it!! I have a french companion that I use in studio and love it for the same reason as you.. it is a great flat space to lay everything on. The only thing I would caution you on is that the way you have attached the brace to the top cross piece of the mistress would seem to put a lot of stress on the side joints?! I have a Richeson model.. and I can say 100% that the dovetail joints they use to hold the sides and back together are crapola.. I've had to reinforce them both already (just from the stress of laying my turp jar on one of the side wings!). Your model looks to be a bit sturdier somehow though, so maybe it doesn't matter.

great little set-up ya gots! cheers, Mike

I have a Richeson in my studio as well. That is what initiated this whole ordeal. The one that I built and the one that James Coulter markets are fairly bullett proof. The wings are quite solid. No issues there.

In my opinion, this is hands down the best setup I have come across. I endorse it fully if your interest is on painting and not wrestling with equipment.

skipstah70
09-02-2007, 02:37 PM
I have a Richeson in my studio as well. That is what initiated this whole ordeal. The one that I built and the one that James Coulter markets are fairly bullett proof. The wings are quite solid. No issues there.

In my opinion, this is hands down the best setup I have come across. I endorse it fully if your interest is on painting and not wrestling with equipment.
Very nice Les, Wanna sell me the cut plans? :D I'd love to make one!

M

les lull
09-02-2007, 08:44 PM
Very nice Les, Wanna sell me the cut plans? :D I'd love to make one!

M

If you are serious Skip I would be happy to help with measurements or whatever you need.

id-art
05-22-2008, 06:04 PM
Les, I liked the simple way you support your palette on the tripod. I did something similar here http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/showthread.php?t=497289. And the plastic one is not really the same...it has to legs underneath. Too complicated!

JoshCurryArt
05-22-2008, 07:29 PM
Wow Les that really folds up there. iii great photo of superstition mountain, love that place. Doing a plein air in goldfield with that in the background in a few weeks.

Les how heavy is it? I only ask because sometimes I hike with my gear upwards to about 45 minutes to an hour till I find that sweet spot sometimes.

imaginationcounts
11-21-2008, 12:29 AM
those are all so cool better than sitting in the back of my truck . the back of the truck can get a little messey . or shall i say the suv... thanks for sharing i have good ideas now. for transporting my wet paintings.i usually use a garbage bag and put my painting on it.

Outdoor Painter
03-30-2011, 09:53 PM
I, too, have a French Mistress that I love. Often wondered if there was a way to mount it to the tripod. Then I found the setup made by Art Box & Panel. His box is much lighter than the French Mistress and I love the tripod that comes with it. A great setup and not much weight. Freedom at last!

manfrommerriam
04-18-2012, 01:25 AM
Looking at this again I can't help but think that if the upper part, the panel holder, was not adjustable it could be smaller. A painter could have at home several in different sizes and only take out one that say was for 9x12 panels. This would only have to accept and clamp a 9" tall panel. Then if the tripod threaded mount was on the bottom edge the thing would be shorter still. This would make the thing smaller and lighter. Now, anyone up to make one with two thin panels or laminates and a 1/2" core of closed cell foam such as Gator board?
Have fun, Dave