I always thought being a plein aire artist was sort of a romantic endeavor. The artist, dressed in a really cool hat, would wander the countryside, setting up under a spreading tree in harmony with the world. That is, until I started actually doing it myself.
I wrote in a previous post about the insidious spreading of red paint after a mishap on an early plein aire trip. My plan was to show you photos of my latest excursion, only, well, there was nothing in the photo. Literally nothing.
I spent an hour or two "learning", which is a nice word for making mud. I remembered that I wanted to document the trip, so I walked with my camera about 4 feet in front of, and a bit over to the side of, my easel. Carefully I set the camera on a post and set the timer. My timer is set, I've got about 8 seconds to get back to my easel and act like I'm having a great time painting. I never made it.
Two steps into my mad dash I disappeared into a deep ditch that had been completely disguised by tall grass. After plunging for what seemed like minutes and miles I finally and luckily hit soft bottom. Regaining my feet, I rose to find myself eye level to the ground, face to face with a large green grasshopper.
Do you have those moments when you question your career choice?
I have a nice photo of my easel, standing alone by the side of the road.
So just to prove I'm somewhat capable, I'm going to share an image of another plein aire trip. Not a ditch within a half mile.