Nature Restores, Vicki Smith
When working in plein air I try to convey the sense of peace that I feel when working outside, surrounded by the light that I attempt to capture. Interacting with nature is an invigorating force and landscape painting is a timeless art form that reflects our past, and our future. The changing seasons of New Jersey echo the rhythms of our lives. The interplay between a tree and the sky or light and shadow represent the essence of our natural world that should be cherished. Most of my pastel paintings are completed on site with some tweaks in the studio. I use a portable easel and start with an underpainting to establish values. I try to find a private spot that is in the shade and away from traffic so that I can focus on the work. The basics of a piece need to be completed relatively quickly before a cloud alters the lighting or a swarm of gnats moves in.