plein air landscape painting
Painting From Life vs. From Photos


Traveling makes one aware of constraints of time and space. If I am in Paris today, but I won’t be tomorrow, I need to make the most of the present opportunities.

Painting in the same studio from day to day gives the impression of being in the same place. Working with the same types of materials over time gives a sense of continuity. I’m realizing how much this is an illusion, in the dimension of the art itself.

I can look at older work and enjoy it, but I can’t go back to the “place” I was when I made it — as much as I would like to sometimes. Depending on the type of work and the progress I am making, “old” can mean a year or two weeks. What I am doing on a given day defines a “place” that I found a path to from yesterday. I won’t be able to return most likely. I need to make the most of the place where I am at the moment, then move on.

On this journey an itinerary is not available. If I try to look back or too far ahead, I risk losing my way.