Friday, August 8, 2014

The First Plein Air Experience

     After completing my sketch kit I've decided that it's time to go out and paint. Armed with a Sakura Koi Waterbrush, Winsor and Newton Artists' Field Box, and a small Moleskine watercolor sketchbook, I went to the first place that I thought would provide me with inspiration, Intramuros.

Winsor & Newton Artists' Field Box
     Entering Intramuros from Manila City Hall side, I tried to remember how to get to Manila Cathedral. It has been years since I’ve been here. Along the way, I also tried to scout any spot that might be interesting to draw. Wow, they are really restoring this place. There are lots of buildings already renovated. New buildings are being built along the theme of the existing buildings, the guards are wearing uniforms as if they were Spanish soldiers of that time (I was later told that by my niece this has been going on a few years already). When I've finally arrived at the Manila Cathedral at 11:00 am, there were lots of people and its hard to find a spot to paint. Maybe I could just paint the fountain in front of the church. I knew its not going to be comfortable drawing and painting with all the people passing by, but I never knew I’ll feel VERY uncomfortable. I just keep telling myself that I have to draw something. I won’t go home without filling a page on my sketchbook. My hands were shaking as I lay down my first lines. What’s happening? I think It was a combination of anxiousness to get things right, excitement of the moment, and the distraction of the people.

My first attempt didn't go well, I ended up sketching a person sitting in the fountain. People keep moving so memory and speed drawing is necessary. 

     I thought that I should just go somewhere else. I remember seeing another good spot along the way so I decided to go there.

After 10 minutes into the painting, the sky began to darken so I've decided to wrap things up.

      I’m quite satisfied the way things turned up. Not bad for a first attempt, I thought. I should be doing this from now on. This is my new high! If only there is a group of people with the same interest to paint with...

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