Why Paint En Plein Air?

Mountain Stream (above; oil, 6×8) is one of my small plein air works. While painting it, the shadows were changing quickly, so I just tried to record what I saw as fast as I could. Why not take a photograph? That wouldn’t capture the grass blowing in the wind or the movement of the water. Why not take a high-definition video? Neither videos nor photos would convey what I felt when I sat before my easel for a couple of hours on this quiet river bank. This image will be in my mental rolodex forever, accompanied with the memory of mosquitoes buzzing in my ear and the sun burning the back of my neck.

Jeremy Lipking is a feature artist in the November 2009 issue of The Artist’s Magazine. Widely recognized for his intense landscapes and compelling paintings of women, Lipking is that rare, gifted painter who has achieved major critical and creative success in a strikingly short period of time. For more information, visit his website at www.lipking.com.

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