Tuesday, 29 December 2015

Artists who paint in Italy - Mary Pettis

Mary Pettis is a plein air painter who visits Italy for it's magnificent Plein Air painting opportunities. 

Firstly, we would like to congratulate Mary for her recent award and fabulous painting which won 3rd place in the "En Plein Air Texas" Painting Competition. She painted this scene en Plein Air with no photographic reference, over a 4 hour period.

Her strategy for capturing this moving artistic feast was to know the goats eating habits in advance, where and when they were fed. She shows her process in her color sketch (see below). Laying in the important elements, separating light and dark forms on her canvas and positioning important objects. As a goat would move into a convenient position, she painted it in using very simple light and dark shapes. The completed oil painting is magnificent and it's amazing what can be achieved with a good plein air strategy.

Mary sitting with the 3 winning paintings. Hers is titled:
Breakfast at Treva's - oil by Mary Pettis.

The initial stage. Sketching in the main forms and shadows on the canvas, including the person in the distance.
The completed oil painting. Quiet spectacular. 

She also recently visited, Cinque Terre, Italy with a group of artists and I wanted to share some of her photos which describe the adventure. They give an idea of the great beauty, light and painting potential of Italy. Mary allowed me to share the following images and her descriptions below.

The artists waiting for the bus to Monterosso.

One hour sketch demo from the hotels garden terrace.
Moments of solitude...
This lovely Italian woman (seen above) popped open her window and started calling down to us in Italian; she was showing off her flowers and the beautiful steps up to her house (seen below). I asked if I could paint it for my demo and she was joyous! She went on calling down to me, pointing and telling me where I should stand to get the best view.
 When I was done with my 1 hour sketch, seen here, this lovely woman re-emerged asking to see the finished painting. I showed it to her and she gave me a huge smile and two thumbs up.

For more information on Mary and her art you can visit her blog at http://marypettis.blogspot.it/

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