Monday, January 08, 2007


More and more I’m plagued by indecision. What should I put up here? Also, what will I do with the rest of my life? There are just too many options. So, when in doubt, do something. If it weren’t for sheer caprice, I get a lot less done.

For no reason at all, here’s a real plein air painting I did on location in Algonquin Park in Canada. I know that’s redundant but a lot of artists tell me that their ‘plein air’ paintings are done from photographs or are based on sketches done on location and finished in the studio.

All the paintings I do from life are exercises. That means I’m studying what I’m painting more than I’m trying to do a nice painting. I don’t do it on purpose. It’s just the way my mind works.

Every day when I’m not painting I’m studying why things look the way they do. I even have a number of theories on this subject that are different than I was taught and contrary to what I’ve read in books. In my, very arrogant sounding, opinion there’s a lot of bad observation going on and it’s repeated in text books but it’s still wrong. Knowing what I know may not make my paintings any better but I’d rather base my opinions on what I see rather than what’s written. Even if I’m wrong.

PS: I recently noticed that the author of “Petrogypies” (see post of same title) wrote a comment. Pretty funny. I wrote to him at his community blog called “eat our brains” and I’m looking for the sketch he was interested in seeing.


Blogger Bob Eggleton (Zillabob) said...

This is a knockout Tom. As anyone knows I'm no slouch in my love of landscape painting, purely as Fine Art and you've done this with flying colors. I'm just going to scrutinize it alot! Hey I also realized I need to put your link on my blog!

6:40 PM  
Blogger Tom Kidd said...

And I'd be remiss if I didn't mention Bob's painting-a-day bog: Bob's Art du Jour. He and his wife, Marianne, have gotten deep into habitual painting. Marianne's blog: Daub du Jour

8:35 PM  
Blogger Scott Altmann said...

Wow -that is something. Plein-aire...really? Not that it looks overworked or labored over, but you really achieved a great deal of information in this.
Love it!

6:12 PM  
Blogger Tom Kidd said...

It was a hot day. I did a lot of sweating. My wife had the tedious task of swatting the mosquitoes off of me from time to time when they began to lift me from the ground. They don't bite her, only me and I had repellant. Nature doesn't like me or likes me too much. I should do a drawing of this.

7:21 PM  
Blogger tlc illustration said...

Have you published your own visual observations? Especially the ones that differ from the 'textbook' ones? (If not in book form - maybe you could discuss some on your blog). I'm always fascinated by how differently people perceive things...

2:23 AM  
Blogger Tom Kidd said...


I'll do that. A lot of the time I find that someone has come up with the same observations I have, I just didn't know they did. Lately people have been contacting to be part of step-by-step or other instructional books so I try to include my thoughts in those. My stranger ideas get edited out though. I'd love to do an instructional book of my own though. It would force me to put everything together in a cohesive manner. My brain tends to ramble.

Hey, I just read your blog. You use the same technique I do to meet impossible deadlines. When you're done get back to a healthier lifestyle. Good luck with all.

3:55 PM  

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