Friday, February 12, 2010

Moving around

Sunny winter afternoon on Cherrywood
acrylic on canvas
8 x 8 inches
Barbara Muir © 2010

One of things I admire about plein air
painters is that they're gutsy. They get right
out there and paint in all weather. I am not
them. Sand at the ocean, grit in the city, wind,
dirt in my acrylics, rain, too much sun, not enough
...I haven't acquired the requisite coping skills.
But last summer I did porch air paintings out
on my front porch, and really enjoyed the results.
For the past couple of afternoons there has been
a glorious light. Robins and over observant artists
think it's the precursor-to-spring-type of light.
I haven't seen a Robin yet, and I'm grateful for
that because I love those birds and it is sub
zero weather.

But I have seen an artist getting all peculiar,
starting to sing with no provocation. So this
artist instead of sitting on the porch, now a wasteland
of icy concrete and bricks, decorated by permanently
on bad taste Christmas lights (the only lights
available two days before the event), sat inside.
I scoured the place for a perch, and decided on
my model's chair in the studio window.
So this is what I saw. You may recognize the
view done in a much more restrained manner a
while back. I might work on it a bit more, or
leave it as it is -- loose and happy.

I realized today that we don't have to go out
to get that plein air spirit, we just have to
be strategic, and careful and move around in
our own houses, (or other people's if they are
willing) to paint what we see. It wasn't comfortable
sitting on the arm of my chair in the window. But
was it meant to be?

Have a moving-around-for-a-view day.


Anonymous said...

I love this painting Barbara! The black ground gives it so much drama too. It's so loose and great shapes and colours and SOOOO Toronto. love it!

Tammy Hext said...

I think this is my new favourite landscape of yours. The composition and colours just rock.

Barbara Muir said...

Hi Flora,

Thank you so much. You are super sweet. Yes our street is soooo Toronto. We love it.


Karen Bruson said...

Oh, I love this one...the strong colors and lines and composition. I love that you zoomed in.

Barbara Muir said...

Hi Tammy,

Thanks so much. Your picture of Karin is my new favorite portrait of yours.

Take care,


Barbara Muir said...

Hi Karen,

It makes me supremely happy to see your work each day. I remember your last summer picture and thinking how absolutely perfect it was. Everything I like, light, loose and lots of colour used in surprising ways.

Take care,


Linny D. Vine said...

Wonderful, Barbara! Chunky and loose!

Barbara Muir said...

Hi Linny,

Thank you very much. I like the word chunky applied to painting. Now I feel inspired to do more chunky stuff.

It's so easy to get lost in detail. Love your grain elevator

Anonymous said...

oooh, Barbara I love this, the light you have captured it perfectly. I love that gorgeous precursor to spring light type of light. Lovely job!

Mary Sheehan Winn said...

I can't even tell that your perch was uncomfortable. The painting is beautiful. I love the rich 'in your face' color and the design.

Portrait Artist

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Toronto, Ontario, Canada
I paint and draw on commission and for shows. To commission a portrait, or purchase one of my paintings please contact me at:
A major highlight in my career? Drawing Oprah Winfrey live via Skype for her show "Where in the Skype are you? Galleries: Studio Vogue Gallery, Toronto, Canada. The Amsterdam Whitney Gallery, New York City. Gallery at the Porch Door, Kingston, Canada. Your positive comments on this blog mean the world to me. I'd love to hear from you!