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Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Painting with Debra Huse at the Ship Yards

 Debra hosted another paint out at the ship yards.  It was the biggest turnout yet.  She gave a tour of the yard and shared her knowledge of painting boats.
 As we toured through the ship yard Debra would point out each of the boats and tell a little about their history, what type of boat they were, and their unique characteristics.  She suggested the features that were critical when painting them.
 I thought Debra was an extremely gracious host.  What a great location for a paint out.  She was very down to earth and humble in her demeanor.  She was very helpful and shared with everyone.
 Debra went on to talk about her expanded pallet and her new edge pro set up.  I thought it was interesting that she included so many greys that she could have easily mixed herself.   I did not watch the demo as I had done the two previous years.  I am almost always the last painter to finish so I wanted to get a jump on my painting.
 Debra's finished demo.  
 I selected this group of boats to paint.  The two previous years that I have painted with Debra at this location I had really struggled to paint something decent.

 I started with a water color underpainting on wallis paper.  My intent was to establish the dark values within the painting and to create the overall base color that I would work over.  The dark green grays throughout the painting would really help the pastel stand out.  
The past couple of years at the paint out with Debra, I have really struggled painting the boats dry docked. This year I knew that I did not want to have the same struggle so I chose these boats in the water.  
It was an amazing day to be painting outside.  I have listened to the debate between the advocates for painting in the studio versus plein air painting.  When you are painting from something static like a photograph or a sketch, you are limiting the information to pull from.  If the most important thing is the artists eye or vision then the limitations of working from a photo or sketch would be thought to be prohibitive to good painting.  
The wealth of information to select from is an advantage.  The changing light lets you pick from a larger array of colors.  The things moving around in the landscape might be worth adding to your painting.
The finished painting.  Boats in the Harbor is a mixed media painting that measures 28"X48".  It has a watercolor underpainting with soft pastel over it on Wallis sanded paper.