An Online Artist's Coop for Artists who Paint on Location
I believe real life happens when we're fully engaged in the moment. Tibetan Buddhists call this being in our own Buddha nature; a place we all have within us that's our true nature. We can nurture the capacity to experience it through art, meditation, great literature, music, the enjoyment of nature -- or other means. I primarily experience it by painting within and of the natural world, en plein air, focused on the moment in nature.
I sketched and painted from an early age, always carrying around a small sketch pad and watercolors for any opportunity. I was in love with impressionism, especially impressionist landscapes, before the age of 10. I'm now concentrating on increasing my visual perception as much as possible, while also working to develop further skills to convey my reaction to the changing light in nature.
Before painting en plein air (outdoors), I first try to understand what it is that appeals to me in the real-life scene. Then, I decide on composition. Sometimes, I do a few small sketches for this purpose. Just as often, I draw in paint directly onto my canvas if I've already deciphered the internal structure. I then quickly lay down the values with hues -- a colorist painting method -- and proceed to modeling and detail. I occasionally finish a plein air painting in the studio, but always try to maintain the freshness of plein air.
I'm currently working under a mentor, Mitch Albala, well-known Seattle landscape painter and instructor at Gage Academy of Art in Seattle. I've recently studied under Camille Przewodek, Petaluma, CA, a colorist, who learned from the late Henry Hensche (http://henryhenschefoundation.org/) at the Cape School of Art, Ken Roth, an Oregon artist I admire particularly for his skill in identifying the essential forms he then paints with vigor, Sandra Power, a Seattle-based still-life realism artist, and James Moore, a Whidbey Island artist with strong sense of color and light. A few years ago, I attended the Marchutz School of Drawing and Painting, Institute for American Universities, Aix-en-Provence, France for eight weeks. I minored in Art in college. My work has been shown at the annual Arts and Nature Festival, Magnolia Arts Festival, Seattle Artist's Gallery, Lombardi's Cucina, Walking on Water Gallery and Crow Valley Pottery on Orcas Island. My series, "Three months of Plein Air in Baja Sur," will be featured in a one-woman show at Art on the Ridge in Seattle, May 1 through 31, 2012. The reception will be held on the evening of Friday, May 11.
You can see my blog at http://jwellsmoran.com/blog, sign up to receive my newsletter from the home page or participate in my Baja Sur Plein Air Paintings Auction. This month's auction is the painting on my home page at http://jwellsmoran.com.