View Full Version : My first two Plain Air paintings

03-06-2011, 05:47 PM

I just started Plein Air painting after buying the equipment for Christmas, these are the first two results:



They look rather terrible, but I had a great fun doing them. Maybe you can give me some tips how to make it better.

03-06-2011, 06:22 PM
They look good to me ,keep up the good work.

03-06-2011, 08:14 PM
good work, keep it up

03-06-2011, 08:58 PM
These are your first plein airs? Are you sure?? They both look great to me!! You must have a lot of landscape experience.

03-06-2011, 09:00 PM
I agree with the preceeding commentators: You are doing well and should just keep at it.
Have fun, Dave

03-06-2011, 09:55 PM
Looks just fine, not terrible there Hoss! you are in! now just do some more!:D
You got very nice, different tones for the pair, that is a good thing.
First two? that does it, I am going online to Art Supply Warehouse now to order over 100 bucks worth of plein air stuff! :D

03-07-2011, 02:37 AM
Thank you all for your kind words.

These are indeed the first two plein-air paintings. But I did a copy of a landscape painting before and some still life painting and portrait drawing. Most I know from reading though. Reading good articles, forums like wetcanvas, good books on oil painting ... I read them over and over again until I had all visual phenomenas memorized (for example that light objects change colour not as much in the distance like dark objects and that green trees get more blue in the distance etc.) and I looked at the step-by-step illustrations over and over again.

I have trouble for example with the trees, for example in the upper one, they are much too thick. The problem was I painted it all without the trees and then tried to get the dark trees into the wet light paint and it all mixed together so I had to put on more and more paint to make them dark, now they are too thick. Would it be better to paint the trees first and then paint the light sky and water around them ?

03-08-2011, 07:28 AM
I wish my work looked that terrible! :))
Nice work!

Max Klinger
03-08-2011, 10:31 AM
Good start!

I suggest some more structure/drama in the air to get it more vibrant. The depth in space I find very well painted and also the compositions are nice. Maybe the blue of the water of the first painting could get a bit deeper and bluer; that probably would increase the contrast with the warm earthcolours of the foreground. Only some thoughts, I will not critizise...


03-08-2011, 10:53 AM
I am glad you like it yakkar, thank you. Still a long way to get as good as the painters I admire. Thank you Max. Indeed out at the lake the blue of the sea was much deeper and there was a whole lot more going on, just like you said. The sky straight up was rather clear and only foggy in the distance to the direction of the mountains. So the reflections in the water was actually more blue than the distant sky.Also a few sea birds were there, swans and ducks, which I left out, scared to mess it up. Now that the weather gets better each week I will practice more. It seems one can learn a great deal in plein-air painting that will also be useful for indoor paintings.

03-08-2011, 02:11 PM
Would it be better to paint the trees first and then paint the light sky and water around them ?

First off, they both show a lot of promise. Like everything else the more you do the better you get. They both have good depth and perspective. Very nice. I too learned from reading and watching. There are so many great artists to learn from.

You stated you had problems painting dark over light. I recommend painting your darks in first. Lay them in very thin and try your best not to lose them or cover them up too much. The darks should recede into the paint. Leave the thick buildup for your light. The more you practice this the more confidence you get and it becomes easier to achieve.

When you paint outside the shadows change very fast, right before your eyes. Laying in your darks first, establishes the painting right away. Just learn to not chase the darks. Example, don't try to constantly repaint them. Also when painting dark to light, keep your brushes very clean between color changes. When I paint my sky I normally grab a clean brush.

Great job and I look forward to seeing your next ones.

03-08-2011, 02:35 PM
Great start!!! well done and keep at it...now doubt you will cos it's additive! :wink2: