Outdoor painting is food and drink to my landscape and sky canvases.
Painting the outside world with all its experiences, observations and visual memory is essential to my work.
Outdoor working is the inspirational and factual hub of my landscape painting. Without it I’d dry up.
Outdoor paintings work well by themselves as finished works but they also serve as source material for larger works.
I normally base larger paintings directly on smaller outdoor studies, but without exception all my studio work is derived from outdoor observations and the visual memories thus retained.
Vital though outdoor painting is, I generally take it indoors to reflect on it; to step back a bit…… to be less overwhelmed by nature in order to reconstruct the image in a more reflective frame of mind.
These two distinct approaches work well together – outdoor working brings the raw energy into a work while studio painting focuses and refines the vision.
Some outdoor works are complete in themselves with the need for studio working.
Pencil sketching is an invaluable part of outdoor working. The information in a drawing may be more limited than in an oil sketch but it’s easier to focus on line, pattern and shape and to record the kind of hard detail that a painting may need later. I do a lot of quick drawing in sketchbooks. Even if a particular set of scribbles have no intrinsic value, they certainly to help train the eye.