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Saturday, August 22, 2009

Plein Air Intensive Workshop with Albert Handell in Grand Marais, MN

Preparing for a class is more than packing the paper and pastels, especially one like this one. We will be painting outside ("plein air") every day, one site in the morning, one in the afternoon, for 5 days. Beautiful Grand Marais has plenty of subject matter for us. We must be prepared for weather ranging from sunny and 80 degrees, to raining and 45 degrees. We carry our painting supplies over rocks, streams, through campgrounds, into ravines. There are sometimes nearby bathrooms. Our instructor paints along with us, but does not directly teach while he and we paint.

In the evenings, we meet with our mentor, Albert ( This is when the teaching happens. There is a critique of the day's painting, and then instruction. Painting all day outside can be tiring, but there is always plenty of energy in the room for the evening mentoring. It's why we are there, and where the real work happens. I have goals for painting (better rocks), for my technique (finish a painting on site, not in the studio later), for my vision (does my viewer feel it?).

But how do I get ready for that?

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