Friday, October 28, 2011

Food for the Palette

I've discovered that painting is an endurance sport, especially if I'm outdoors painting for long lengths of time.  I notice that if I make good choices and eat enough food I'm fine no matter how long I'm out there.  

I change what I eat according to the season. We are having our first snowfall in Maine as I write this. The really cold weather hasn't arrived for real... yet. 
Back Road Field Study 8x16 watercolor

This morning I changed my breakfast to my cold weather menu.  I had a huge cup of steaming hot decaf coffee and a slice of baked oatmeal. Yum !  It's the best stuff ever!  I'm hooked!

I'm trying it out as my new cold weather breakfast. I can have it packed and ready when I have to dash out early in the morning to paint.  
Ogunquit River Field Study 8x16 watercolor

This week I'm doing some big chunks of studio time in-between my plein air trips. 

Carvers Harbor Field Study 8x16 watercolor

 Vermont Pasture Field Study 8x16 watercolor

I'm finishing up some paintings I started outdoors and beginning some new larger paintings from field studies.

My wonderful husband Marcus was home today and fixed lunch for me! I eat the same thing almost every day and never get tired of it. 

My field sketches are so important when I am painting in the studio. I paint large paintings en plein air finishing them on location and sometimes in the studio.

I also paint large paintings completely in the studio using my field studies as the basis for the paintings.
Clouds Moving Out Field Study 11x14 watercolor

For years I was only a studio painter, then I was only a plein air painter. Now I do both. The two have merged and I am really focusing on this development.
Lobster boats in N'oreaster 8x16 watercolor

I have a super lovely studio. It's all bright and airy. In the summer it's cool and shady. It is also warm and toasty in cold weather. On sunny winter days it fills with light. 

I travel a lot in warmer months to paint on location so I don't often get to spend much time in my studio.  In winter I usually paint closer to home so I can work on large paintings in the studio.  
Winter Marsh Field Study 9x12 oil

I'm coordinating my winter indoor/outdoor schedule so I get enough fresh air and studio  time every week...I'm looking for that nice balance.
Marsh Evening Field Study 11x14 oil

I notice I burn a lot of fuel when I'm painting outdoors in the cold. And I notice that I have to eat hot food at the beginning of the day and the end of the day to feel right.  If I eat cold food for breakfast or a salad for dinner I get chilly.  

I keep my studio temperature in the 50's.  If it is too warm I become overheated while painting.  I'm always moving and walking around when I'm at the easel.  It's a habit. When I'm outdoors I walk away from the easel to get a view of the painting from a distance.  I do the same thing indoors...I like staying in motion.
Moon Night Field Study 8x16 oil 

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