Monday, December 26, 2016

It's Mini Week! How to Paint on the Go

'Red and Green'        2.5 x 3.5      pastel       ©Karen Margulis
available $25
It is mini week here on the blog!  I am back from my mom's birthday cruise with a collection of mini pastels that I painted while I was away. There is nothing more relaxing than sitting in a lounge chair at sea and painting. The gentle sea breeze and a bit of warm sunshine equals total relaxation. It is the perfect combination that leads to a fun painting session. I love lounge chair painting but it needs to be stress free and easy in order for it to be fun.

After several years of painting on the go I have perfected my systems. I have several set-ups for plein air painting with pastels. The one I choose depends on the type of travel I am doing. When I want to keep my art supplies at a bare minimum I bring the set-up illustrated below. This set up is small and light but allows me to paint up to 6x8 with ease. 

My smallest travel pastel set-up....a Heilman single sketch box and a book cover case!
 Here are the details of this set-up:

  • I use a Heilman single sketch box. I used to use a cigar box and then an old Terry Ludwig pastel box. Both of these worked fine but the Heilman is sturdier and protects my pastels better. It also doubles as a pochade box so you can put your paper on the inside lid. I don't use the box in this way. I prefer to use a 5x7 piece of foam core and some bankers clasps to hold my paper. 
  • Support board: I cut a piece of foam core to 5x7 and place it inside of a clear bag for protection. You could also cover it with clear contact paper. I use bankers clasps to hold my paper on the board so I don't have to carry tape.
  • I store blank pastel paper in a 5x7 plastic portfolio book by Itoya. I put the finished paintings in this book. (This trip I didn't have my book so I had to improvise ...more on this later this week!)
  • Pastels: I fill my box with bits and pieces of pastels. The small pieces allow me to have more variety. I make sue to have a good range of colors and values. I love the unorganized box. It really pushes me to make interesting color choices
  • Miscellaneous: small pack of wipes and a small micro fiber washcloth (I use this to protect my chair or table from pastel dust)

a nice mix of colors...all bits and pieces of various pastels
including Terry Ludwig and  Girault

This cruise I didn't paint plein air from my lounge chair. Instead I had an envelope of small reference photos. I just grabbed a random selection from my stash. It was fun going through the photos looking for subject matter. It also resulted in a wide variety of paintings!  I did do several poppy minis so I have grouped them here in today's post. They are all 2.5 x 3.5 inches on a variety of sanded papers.

All minis will be available in my Etsy shop for $25 each with free shipping. Click here to visit my shop. 

All mini poppy paintings are 2.5 x 3.5 inches and are available in my Etsy shop

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