Friday, January 9, 2015

Home Staying

I'm going to break from my normal pattern here, and I don't mean my pattern of going weeks without feeding the blog, but rather my pattern of taking things in order.

I've been doing this Saturday paint-out thing for going on five years, since March 6, 2009, if you want to keep track.  This is how it started.  My youngest son was going off college, and I thought I ought to dedicate myself to making good use of my expanding spare time.  I was already drawing and painting, but I decided to put more time into it.  I signed up for a watercolor painting class and joined some art clubs.  I  found out about people going out and painting on location every Thursday, and I badly wanted to join them, but I couldn't shake off my Monday through Friday full-time employment.  So I said to the board of one of the art clubs, I think there should be paint-outs on Saturday mornings.  And the board said, make it so.  I got a little help early on, but soon it fell to all me.  It was going to be a club activity, but the club's insurance carrier could not condone club members being led out into the wilds to paint, so it became its own thing.  Unaffiliated and unsanctioned.  Just a bunch of people getting together and painting.  Sometimes, though, it wasn't a bunch.  Sometimes there were just a couple of painters.  Sometimes only me.  Frankly, I like it better when there are other painters around.  It's more fun and it's also safer.  But I don't mind painting alone.  So I stuck with it.  I habituated it.  I paint on Saturday mornings.  I am constantly on the lookout for places to paint.  I send emails to people who want to get emails about Saturday painting.  

I've had companion painters come and go over the years.   I understand that there are hundreds of other things to do on Saturdays.  Yard sales, cartoons, diner breakfasts, daylight lovemaking, gardening, and hiking, to name a few.   I send emails to seventy people.  Some have never actually come to paint.  I'm glad all seventy don't come, because that is much too big a group to paint with.  I think about 5 to 10 people is optimal, and that is just about how many people come these days.  My painter friends make me happy, and I think I've done a good thing giving them a nudge to come out and paint on Saturdays.  I treasure their friendship and their company and their artistic wisdom and their art.  So once a year I invite them to my house and give them some food to show my gratitude.  Then they hang around and paint pictures of my house.  Maybe someday art historians will wonder why so many artists chose to paint a modest one-story 1917 bungalow with Christmas colored trim and unkempt landscaping.  Like this:
For some more work by some of these painters, see


  1. i absolutely loved reading your post! Your painting is wonderful and thank you for sharing the work of your fellow outters. i love the way you write as well. a wonderful way to start my day. thank you!

    and thank you too for your kind words and a very happy and successful new year to you!

  2. I love this post and all the paintings - so much talent and your house is a favorite style of mine. If I lived closer I would join in. I don't have any experience painting plein air but i would jump right in and start learning. Loved this! and thanks for the links to other artists you "play" with on Saturdays. Would love even more links if you have them.

    1. Sandy, I don't have other links. Not everybody posts their paintings (or they are just hiding from me.) If you can't make it down to paint with us some time, maybe we can come to you. We were looking for a good snow location.

    2. that would be great Barbara - probably where I am Crestline - would be hard to find much snow lately - but higher up Big Bear or Green Valley lake will probably get more snow this season. We got I think about 4 to 5" around New Years and that was it -and it melted quick because then we had winds.

  3. You hear it a lot these days "play it forward" and you have for me. I'm all about synchronicity.

    Thanks Barbara

  4. I love that story... :-)
    Thank you Barbara!