Sunday, March 3, 2013

Experimenting en Plein Air Drawing/Paintings

This was really an experiment. I sat outside (en plein air) at the Pure Grain Bakery to draw on Thursday last. There was a swarm of mom's and babes I could have drawn, but I was drawn instead to the beautifully blooming purple bushes to my left!
I drew them quickly with my black ink pen, then I took my colored pencils and colored them in.
I used my water glass and straw to drop droplets of water into the colored places and then used my napkin to spread the color around. It became my paint brush. Eventually I realized that I had an actual paint brush that comes with my art journal with me, so I used it some too.

On Friday I had the urge to do more plein air so I went to Buck Avenue where the old Victorians are and with my little three legged chair, pens, pad, paints and water I set up across the street from this old Vic. It's the same one I drew last year in far greater detail that  now hangs framed in our living room. But it was fun to see her again, fleetingly, adding a few brush strokes of lightly watered down gauche paint over the ink.

I had two passersby who stopped to look and chat. Always a bit daunting when that happens. The guy was very pleasant and personable. He wanted to know if I was taking classes or just doing this on my own. (On my own) and where was I from? (Here. People sometimes think I am from New York, which I find hysterical, as I am a 3rd generation Californian. But something in my voice makes them wonder that!)

 painted on the spot

Then I hopped over to Tacos Jalisco for a late lunch. The place was jumping with people. Packed.
I just decided to draw quickly for some reason fitting as many people into my page as I could from all over the room.

painted later at home that night

After I finished the first page I got up and went to the opposite side of my table and sat so I had a different view and got Carlos' aunt behind the counter, the cook in back, one woman who changed places and looks like she's talking to herself here on the right, another woman with her back to me waiting for a take out order, and the back of Carlos wearing his new T-Shirt with the new logo he created for them. He's quite the artist! His head is not in the picture, as he was so busy I couldn't catch him standing still long enough to draw him. I'll go paint them now and post them later.

I'm linking this to Sunday Sketchers, catch the other artists there via the link on my side bar! You will be happy you did!!!

Have a great week! We are enjoying wonderful sunny warm weather perfect for drawing outdoors!
Okay, it's supposed to rain this week, and we need it, but it will only be a few days and then we'll be plein air painters again!
Thank you for your comments, they are a source of life force for me!


  1. Well done Lynn for sketching en plein air. It does take some nerve when people come up and 'look'. I usually try to position myself somewhere that they can't get to me!...I'm such a chicken!! Love your drawings here. Such a great experiment with the pencils and dropping water on. Have a lovely Sunday....ann.

  2. Thanks for sharing with SMWYG this week!

  3. Always love seeing your paintings...I need to get out and do some plein air. People here in France think I'm Canadian when I speak french but I'm originally a London gal. One day I want to go to Jaco's..looks fun.. :)

  4. lovely work this week Lynn, beautiful flowers on the first one!

  5. Again, I am really taken with your sketch of a building. I think you should do a whole series of architectural studies. Delightful!

  6. Lovely plein air and other sketches are great as always ~ not 'plein air' season here yet ~ ^_^

  7. I love seeing and reading about the places you have been and the interesting people you have sketched! great job as always!

  8. WOW..I can see such a difference in your work now compared to when you first did this house. you did this quickly and got things in perspective much better then when you took 45 minutes to draw it the first times you went out plein air painting. You are SEEING much better and quicker. Your people pix are great and better each time you do some. And your purple flowers are really good too. Love to see your drawings before color.. what a difference color makes. :)

  9. Awesome, you've got some great stuff here! I love how resourceful you were with the first painting. When you gotta paint, you just gotta paint! Thanks for sharing!

    Heather Santos
    Sparrow's Journey Blog

  10. Love your buildings, you are so versatile! <3

  11. I love how you captured those happy moments in this lovely bar!! and all those details like the parrot and the bamboo ♥...xox Conny

  12. I swear you improve with every single post... it is fascinating to watch the progress and i love the sketch of that Victorian home... my favourite of this wonderful post...xx

  13. I feel the same as's like you hit a button and everything keeps getting better and better!! WOW love the Victorian home could print those out and sell should end up in a show for sure!!

    Seems like the colors are more vibrant too!! Lynn you are sooo inspiring!!

  14. I like your quick drawing style, it fits well with the subjects.

    thanks for your visit. hope you have a great day.

  15. Lynn, you are my hero. I'm trying to post a sketch every day in March to help me kind-of push through my fears of sharing them and one of my goals is to do some sketches of people in public places - just gestures really. I actually set out to do it Friday but chickened out and ran errands instead. You are so brave to sketch on the street! I think if I could sketch like you I'd be setting up my three-legged stool everywhere I went! Have a great week! xo, janice made the 1,000th comment on my blog yesterday! (Just thought that was a fun fact). I should give you a prize!


    1. Janice, you have already prized me by telling me I've inspired you to draw in public. That's what my book, " ONE FISH TACO..." Is all about! It shows my year of overcoming my fears of drawing in public. Now I get up most mornings with a strong desire to do so! You go girl!

  16. I always look forward to your sketches. They're so free. I love them painted too! :)

  17. Hi Lynn, It's fun reading about your experiences as you sit and draw / paint. The Victorian is beautiful! The little bits of color are the perfect touch. I was immediately drawn to the painting of the purple bushes. Purple is one of my favorite colors. I like how you used your drinking water and straw; very innovative. :-)

  18. I really am taken with your first picture. It is so immediate and I love the way you improvise!


Thanks for leaving your comments as I love hearing from you. Your words of encouragement are why I continue to draw!