With my last class (under the sponsorship of the South County Art Association (SCAA)) I had briefly described to my students of Plein air some of the working methods of a few of the post-Monet impressionists. These artists included Hawthorne, H.Hensche, and, more recently, Lois Griffel whose Provincetown workshop I was lucky enough to have attended some years ago. To properly convey their methods, of course, requires the discipline of "block studies" on different light keys. Without the time available to practice this discipline, we could only stress the importance of identifying the light key, establishing the scene as spots of color, color masses of the right temperature -- I.e., at least attempting to establish the "first notes". With second notes, " holding to the masses", use of palette knife was stressed. I hoped to expose these students who were primarily trained in traditional painting approaches to the importance of color observation-- and, basically, that there is a lot more to color than identifying hue.
Color is a driving force for me to paint, although most of my work would look out of place in the "Provincetown School". I appreciate that it takes most of a lifetime -- or two!-- to begin seeing sensitively enough the color truths held by the first masses. Here are some practice pieces I attempted to exercise the color sense in specific light keys: