The Making of ‘Plein Air Cafe’

Sometimes I come across a view that makes me want to set up an easel and paint ‘en plein air‘ but I don’t have my ‘gear’ with me.  Finding this off the beaten path restaurant was one such occasion.  Fortunately, I had my camera with me and took shots from all angles and distances.

When I started to paint this scene in my studio I found I didn’t have exactly the right shot I wanted.  So I used a little trick of mine to combine photographs into the view I wanted.  I taped the two photos together that completed my scene and ‘cropped’ the edges with masking tape to minimize distraction from the ‘unwanted’ portions.

You will notice that I took artistic license in the colors, textures, and even in leaving out some elements – like the curtains in the window.  I even ‘moved’ a plant from another table to the one in my view.  I moved through the painting very quickly as though I were really trying to capture the view before the light changed.  The result is my vision of a tiny café with wrought iron chairs and tables on a sunny afternoon.


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