Taipei 101 from the bench


‘Taipei 101 From the Bench’ oil on board 8.5 x 11.5″ 2015


I begun a series of “river” paintings from Daan Park which is just a 5-minute walk from my house. It’s a lovely river park where it’s between two bridges. A boring brown bridge and a more exciting red bridge. Plus, the most iconic symbol of Taiwan is very visible here. I have never painted it up close before. I went outdoors with my new pochade box that has made painting outdoors much easier. I just have to bring more tissues because it’s so easy to get messy. I feel like I’m carrying a small briefcase compared to lugging a large luggage like my french easel (which is still in my studio).

When I brought out my box to the location, I had to pair down my materials. Two brushes and 4 paint colors, the primaries plus white. It’s not rocket-science. The simpler you make your workstation, the more productive you can be because you cut everything out of the way and go right to the essence of the work. Then perhaps touching the work in the studio. I know there are plein-air purists out there that claim you must paint 100% outdoors. But I’m a bit of a perfectionist too and I’m sure most artists do a little touching up later, because let’s face it…you want your painting to look the best it can. And that’s ok. I’m already outdoors getting my composition, colors and light just right. What I do afterwards, well that’s my own special touch. And every artist needs that special touch.