One of the things I've been working on is the processes of using plein air pieces as source material for larger studio paintings.
Today I completed framing a series of pieces all different interpretations of the same scene. I'm staging for a number of shows. These pieces are all about to go off their separate ways to different venues and it struck me they are interesting as a series. I figured I could publish them here as a grouping as well as talking about the process. Here goes ...
This is a photo of the original scene.
Not a great photo - is it? It's actually hard to discern the main tree that I choose as my subject and I find the photo somewhat uninspiring. If someone had handed me the photo I never would have chosen it as a subject for a painting. This is not an uncommon experience as often photos can't capture the beauty of a scene.
Here's the first 9x12 painting I did on location:
"Softly Lit Afternoon"
A few months later I returned and did another painting on location of the same scene:
"Arching for Sun"
Then recently I did a larger 18x24 in the studio using these two plein air pieces and my memory as the only source material (if I had looked at the photo I probably would have lost all my inspiration to paint :-).
"Basking in the Sun"
I didn't even think about the evolution of the the paintings or the extent they incrementally deviated from the photo reference until I saw them all together today. I guess you'd call it natural evolution?