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Plein-air practice

Part 2 Learn how to paint trees and mix greens before following a step-by-step demonstration introducing oils to beginners, by Rodney Kingston
Misty Spring Morning at the Thames , oil, 10x12in. (25.5x30.5cm)

Oil-painting techniques for beginners

Learn to paint in a looser, freer style

How to extract the essentials from a landscape

Having looked at painting en plein air in the hustle and bustle of the urban environment last month, this time I’m focusing on the quieter side of outdoor life in the countryside. The principles are similar to a certain degree, such as using lightweight kit and working quickly. The major differences are the overall composition and colour palette needed.

When venturing to rural land you will be faced with fields, trees and big skies, but there will also be other subjects to catch the eye and tell a story. Farm buildings draw the eye to a particular area of a picture and can provide a narrative. Rivers and paths lead the eye through a scene. If you’re new to painting outdoors, you can use reference photos to practise at home before venturing outdoors, which I encourage you to do. It’s a liberating experience to paint outside, however, with the subject in front of you and what you learn will help improve your studio paintings

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About Leisure Painter

Welcome to the August issue of Leisure Painter. Aimed at beginners and amateur painters, this month's issue is packed with practical advice, demonstrations, tutorials and tips and techniques for drawing and painting your favourite subjects, from materials and colours to the techniques and ideas you need to produce beautiful paintings. Learn how to loosen up your style as you use outdoor techniques for painting at home, or how to transform a dull photograph into a vibrant sunset scene. Understand the value of edges in your work, how to inject life and character into your drawings and paintings of cats, and be inspired to paint summer-themed still lifes. There's a beginner's introduction to Brusho as well as demonstrations in watercolour, acrylics, water-mixable oils and oils.