Plein Air for Beginners

"Painting is easy when you don't know how, but very difficult when you do."
---Edgar Degas

This year I started a new program---Plein Air Tutorials for beginners. The tutorials are a 1-day (2-3 hour) lesson on plein air painting with pastels---perfect for beginners. ZERO experience, ZERO supplies needed. Basically it is a trial run. All supplies and materials are provided. 

"Plein Air" means "open air" and is a  French term used to describe painting outdoors (in open air) from life. The tutorial is geared for those who have very little to no experience in art, or plein air painting, but have interest and would like to take up plein air painting as a hobby. 

There are a number of events out there offered by artists and organizations that help get your feet wet in creating art---Paint Parties, Sip and Paint, Cork and Canvas, etc. While those types of events are popular being both fun and creative, they are more social than actual instructional (educational)---after all, they are designed primarily for "fun." And more often than not, they are done with low grade/quality supplies to help keep the costs down. I am filling a gap for those who would like to explore fine art as a hobby. If you want to learn to paint, and paint in fine art with good quality materials, you will need one-on-one guidance/instruction. And these tutorials are a great start.

The tutorial is different than the workshop. With a workshop, you are responsible for providing your own art supplies. Which is not only an additional cost to the workshop fee, but a hefty one for someone just starting out. With the tutorial, all supplies will be provided. No low grade/quality supplies either. I will provide you with a simple set-up; a French style plein air easel, a good quality surface to paint on, and a box of high brand pastels---this way you can experience the brands professionals use. A few other items will be provided.

The cost is $100. That covers lessons and supply fees. The box of 30 pastels we will be using, each cost $50. The surfaces we will be painting on are $12 each. This rate is cheaper than if you supplied your own materials which would cost you over $200 brand new. A complete supply/price list of everything being used in the tutorial will be provided for future pursuit---in case you fall in love with it and would like to explore plein air painting on your own.

In the tutorial, we will set up our easels in a city park side-by-side where you will interpret the scene as I do, using a step-by-step approach. You will learn basic drawing techniques, painting methods, and how to see and interpret the scene in front of you. In the end, you will be able to take your painting home.

If you enjoyed the tutorial, you may set up another date and take it again, and again. However, there will come a time when you will want to learn more advanced techniques in painting and want to take a workshop to broaden your horizons. At a beginners level, there's no need to suddenly spend hundreds of dollars in a workshop you may or may not like.

Don't be afraid to explore your creative side. Like everything else, painting is a learned skill. Talent is a characteristic obtained through passion, strong interest, and effort. Often people tell me they wish they can do what I do. The obstacle might just be that they don't know where to start.

For more information about my plein air tutorials, go to my website. 


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