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 Your set up for plein air

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Janet
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PostSubject: Your set up for plein air   Tue Apr 06, 2010 7:40 am

Hi everyone! Our camp opens May 15th and I'm wanting to do a lot of plein air painting while we're out their but I'm not too sure how to set up. Should I buy a easel for plein air or are their other options? Any tips would be greatly appreciated.

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Dale

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PostSubject: Re: Your set up for plein air   Tue Apr 06, 2010 11:26 am

I have a French Easel that I love but wish I had a better set up for holding stuff in front of me. I pull out the drawer but it is too narrow. I have seen where you can use a fold out devise. May rig something up
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Janet
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PostSubject: Re: Your set up for plein air   Wed Apr 07, 2010 7:17 am

Thank you Dale for your help! If I buy a french easel I'll pay special attention to the drawer. Smile

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Callie
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PostSubject: Re: Your set up for plein air   Wed Apr 07, 2010 10:53 am

I've got an Anderson Swivel Easel and a Field Portage Bag (will take a pic later).
Most of the plein air group I paint with have Soltek easels (very nice - lightweight), but they do cost a bit - around $500. I'm not serious enough about plein air to put a lot of cash into it, so my $79 easel is fine, and it works well as a table-top easel when at home (the Soltek can be used this way also).

I think I would probably go with this set-up rather than the Soltek if money were no object:
http://www.artworkessentials.com/products/ProChade/ProChade.htm

Got to get to work, see ya later!
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Janet
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PostSubject: Re: Your set up for plein air   Wed Apr 07, 2010 3:49 pm

Thank you Callie for the link! Those are some great options. Just a thought... I have a pochade box and I need to buy a tripod for my camera. Do you think it would work just to add the camera clip (not sure what its called) to my pochade box and use a camera tripod with it. I don't really use the pochade box so I'd have a use for it at least. If I really enjoy plein air I can upgrade at a later date.

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Callie
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PostSubject: Re: Your set up for plein air   Wed Apr 07, 2010 5:39 pm

Most of the pochade boxes out there are not sold with a tripod, but they're designed to fit onto a camera tripod. I've read many good reviews for Manfrotto tripods. Others have mentioned the ball joint that connects the camera and tripod - go for metal over plastic. Also, in the camera stores (and some art supplies) you can get a stone bag. It's made to be hung from the 3 tripod legs so you can put stuff in it to weight your set-up. Good to have if there's a breeze, plus, it's handy for supplies.
The one thing I don't have that I really want is an umbrella. There's been a few days when the sprinkles came and went - could have kept on painting if I'd had an umbrella. I also find it difficult to see what I'm doing in bright sunlight.
Check this out - pictures of a Soltek and an Anderson easel, and a bit further down is a nice umbrella:

http://www.dakotapastels.com/pages/easelsstudio-easelsumbrellas.aspx

I also have a very lightweight folding camp chair (metal frame, canvas seat/back) with a pop-up table with cup holder on one side.
What I don't have is a decent painting out of all of this!
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Janet
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PostSubject: Re: Your set up for plein air   Thu Apr 08, 2010 7:31 am

Thank you for all the great tips and link Callie! The rock back looks like it would be easy to make. I would have never thought of the need to weight the easel. I was really surprised at the price on that Soltek one it looks really basic for the price they're charging.

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Callie
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PostSubject: Re: Your set up for plein air   Thu Apr 08, 2010 10:24 am

The thing with the Soltek is they're very sturdy as well as lightweight and quick to set up. If you look at a few pictures of them, you'll notice how the legs angle out different from a typical easel or tripod - makes it less likely to be blown over.
I usually dump my paint tubes into the stone bag and that keeps the easel steady. I've seen ads for another french easel that lets you position your painting off to the side like the Anderson does. I prefer that to reaching over the drawer/palette, especially if I paint sitting down. It's also nice to be able to adjust the painting angle if the sun changes, rather than have to move the whole easel.
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Callie
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PostSubject: Re: Your set up for plein air   Thu Apr 08, 2010 2:31 pm

I forgot to add - Thinking about where and how you'll be painting will help you decide what set-up will work best for you. Will you be hiking some distance to various areas, or staying close to camp? Can you find shady spots to paint at or will you be out in broad daylight? what size panels do you want to work on and will you do more than one painting per session? - need to have a wet canvas carrier.

And don't forget the bug spray!!!
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judyfilarecki
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PostSubject: Re: Your set up for plein air   Thu Apr 08, 2010 3:55 pm

thanks for all the insight into plein aire painting. I really hadn't t hought about what all I would need.

This summer, I hope to do some for t he first time. I will be working out of my small RV so that might make a difference.

Judy

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Janet
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PostSubject: Re: Your set up for plein air   Fri Apr 09, 2010 8:22 am

Callie, Thanks again! To start I'll probably stay close to camp but you're rite regarding where I paint would dictate my setup. A wet canvas carrier is a great idea I'll have to pick one up. Oh yes the bugs. They're usually really bad so that would be a must. Coffee would be a must as I'll need fuel. Laughing Smile

Judy, it appears we'll both be learning to plein air paint at the same time. Looking forward to exchanges ideas. Smile

Eventually I'd like to purchase that Julien Easels that Dale mentioned but I'll wait until I've tested the waters a bit.

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PostSubject: Re: Your set up for plein air   Fri Apr 09, 2010 10:51 am

I'm still trying to get to the point where I don't bring everything but the kitchen sink with me We have so many great spots to paint at around here that don't require much of a walk to get to, so I'm trying to wean myself away from bringing the whole studio with me. I leave extra paints, brushes and water in the car and just take a limited palette of colors and brushes suitable to the size of my panel. I do make room for a big thermos of coffee and a canister of bug spray.
So far it doesn't matter how many tubes of paint or which brushes I bring - the results are always the same so I'm lightening the load next time out! I think a sandwich or 2 would be more practical than an overstuffed paint box.
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Janet
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PostSubject: Re: Your set up for plein air   Fri Apr 09, 2010 11:51 am

I found this on Scott Burdick: http://www.scottburdick.com/intntnlartst20001.htm

He uses only a red, yellow and blue when painting on location. He uses Water Soluble Oils when painting in remote places like China which is the link above. His paintings are so great!

This one has answers to questions including what equipment he brings when painting in the field:

http://www.scottburdick.com/faq.htm

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judyfilarecki
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PostSubject: Re: Your set up for plein air   Fri Apr 09, 2010 4:25 pm

Thanks for the links, Janet. I enjoyed reading a lot of it and seeing his paintings beside the info about plein air.

I tend to paint with only the three primaries plus a white and maybe raw and burnt sienna so that transition wouldn't be too bad. I'm going to give it a try when I get back to NY.

Judy

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Dale

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PostSubject: Re: Your set up for plein air   Fri Apr 09, 2010 6:12 pm

Wow - he knows how to use values to best show off the subjects. I love them.
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PostSubject: Re: Your set up for plein air   Thu May 27, 2010 11:49 pm

Hubby made me a pochade box, I have a panel holder that I attach to my bogan manfratto tripod. I just need a cup with a hanger, etc., to put my water in.

Kimberly
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kbaxterpackwood

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PostSubject: Re: Your set up for plein air   Sat May 29, 2010 11:07 pm



Still needs a finish, will work on that tomorrow!
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PostSubject: Re: Your set up for plein air   Sat May 29, 2010 11:08 pm



The box is 16x20 inches closed. It's a combo of walnut and baltic birch plywood, and was made by my hubby to work with my bogan manfratto tripod. He's making a panel board holder for me, right now actually, out of cherry. Note the variety of woods, they are from the cast offs in his studio ;-)
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judyfilarecki
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PostSubject: Re: Your set up for plein air   Sun May 30, 2010 8:36 am

That looks great. Do you (or does he) mind if I copy the concept. I have all the wood (scrap and not scrap), the tripod, all the tools and even the piano hinges, to make it. I do a lot of wood working, but haven't over the past two years because of my breathing, but this looks like I could handle it without too much problem.

Thanks for sharing. Judy

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Callie
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PostSubject: Re: Your set up for plein air   Sun May 30, 2010 9:58 am

Very nice! How does the box attach to the tripod?
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PostSubject: Re: Your set up for plein air   Sun May 30, 2010 2:19 pm

Callie wrote:
Very nice! How does the box attach to the tripod?

Little wooden arms.
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PostSubject: Re: Your set up for plein air   Sun May 30, 2010 2:23 pm

judyfilarecki wrote:
That looks great. Do you (or does he) mind if I copy the concept. I have all the wood (scrap and not scrap), the tripod, all the tools and even the piano hinges, to make it. I do a lot of wood working, but haven't over the past two years because of my breathing, but this looks like I could handle it without too much problem.

Thanks for sharing. Judy

I guess not, you REALLY should make a box to suit your needs though, this box will work very well for me in the field since I work in mixed media and do incorporate things and other mediums in my paintings while painting. As I said it's not finished yet. I looked at a LOT of boxes before I handed him a design, I could have bought something off the internet but each one had issues that would have required a work around on my part.

I have a tackle box that holds plastic bins, inside of the bins are different paints types and or pastels, to use as my field box, note I dont' paint far from my truck, because I AM the kind of artist that gets out to the field thinking I was going to paint in oils and suddenly want to use gouache or even pastels.

This set up allows me to put whatever palette I need to use into the box, instead of having 4 pochade boxes dedicated to 4 different mediums.

Kimberly
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judyfilarecki
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PostSubject: Re: Your set up for plein air   Sun May 30, 2010 9:35 pm

I like the design because of the flexibility of it. The work space looks just about right, also. I've never done plein air except once on a cactus outside my front door.

My goal this summer is to try some.

Judy

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PostSubject: Re: Your set up for plein air   Sun May 30, 2010 9:55 pm

judyfilarecki wrote:
I like the design because of the flexibility of it. The work space looks just about right, also. I've never done plein air except once on a cactus outside my front door.

My goal this summer is to try some.

Judy

Check these out first then

http://artboxandpanel.com/

http://www.judsonsart.com/ProductCart/pc/default.asp

There are a couple of others that make and sell plein air boxes as well. I wanted to be able to use my tripod, last thing I need is another easel to trip over!

there's another guy whose boxes I absolutely loved but have not been able to find his site again.

Kimberly
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PostSubject: Re: Your set up for plein air   Mon May 31, 2010 7:22 am

Great idea to make your own pochade box so can take the features you want an incorporate them in the box. Hmmm I think I'm going to put my hubby to work. Thank you for sharing! Smile

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