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Digital Subscriptions > The Artist > December 19 > DECEMBER

DECEMBER

In the last article in this series, Geoff Hunt works up a studio painting from a plein-air sketch

Painting en plein air has become a very popular activity over the last 20 or so years, with more and more individuals and whole groups, some of them very large indeed, devoted to this kind of art. You can take various approaches to outdoor work, ranging from quick sketchbook notes to concentrating on one carefully considered piece done in a whole day. But the prevailing ethos these days tends towards what I sometimes call the smash-and-grab approach: to descend en masse upon a particular set location for a single day, where everyone paints like crazy to produce possibly several paintings each, then on to the next location, maybe never to return to the first place. The sense of urgency this creates can be stimulating, not to mention the spirit of competition, and you can get great work out of it. But there is another much calmer and just as enjoyable a way of working outdoors, which is simply always to carry a sketchbook and to get to know your own locality inside-out, in all seasons and at all times of day: always to patrol your home patch. This way you are ready for opportunities of light and atmosphere, and the chance to see the familiar in unexpected ways.

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About The Artist

Welcome to our December issue. This month consultant editor and acclaimed professional artist David Curtis reveals his approach to painting a recent portrait of his son, while Kathy Barker explains what to look for when painting lips in the second of her series on portraiture in oils. Amanda Hyatt shows how to simplify complex interiors and Paul Weaver advises on the colours to use and mix to create atmospheric greys to capture winter scenes in watercolour. Newcomers to pastel will enjoy the first in Robert Brindley's new three-part series on pastel techniques and landscape demonstration, Soraya French and Robert Dutton suggest myriad creative ideas for working in mixed media to paint flowers and expressive landscapes and Geoff Hunt and Michele Del Campo share how they work up a painting in the studio in different media and very different ways. Cover artist Bob Brandt shows why pattern is so important, while Richard Pikesley, Paul Brown, Charles Williams and Paul Talbot-Greaves all share their ideas to inspire your artistic development. Enjoy your painting with The Artist this month!