Monday, August 18, 2014

Plein Air Gear (Watercolor Edition)

Some painters are known for their minimalist, light-weight gear. I am not one of those painters. Nope. Like a Victorian explorer on an expedition, I drag into the field pretty much everything I like to use, which happens to be a LOT.  And unlike a Victorian explorer, I don't relegate it to a porter but carry it all myself; I really don't mind the added weight.  If I did, I'm sure I'd find a way to pare it down.  Yes, there are days I only use one brush, but I like having five more options available, should I feel that's what the scene needs.

Here's a comprehensive list of what I've been lugging around lately:
Plein Air Pro duffel bag
Plein Air Pro "Advanced Series" watercolor easel with shelf
Sunpack 6601 UT tripod
Jansport backback (Used it for over 15 years. Does that make it vintage?)
Recycled water bottles (3)
Alvin Heritage Paint Palette
Extra paint tubes
Martin/F.Weber Co. Just Stow-it brush holder containing...
-- Winsor Newton 7/8 Mop brush
-- Master's Touch No 10 round
-- Master's Touch No 3 round
-- Robert Simmons Sapphire No 14 round (My workhorse brush)
-- Robert Simmons Sapphire No 6 round
-- Robert Simmons Sapphire No 10 flat
-- Robert Simmons Sapphire Liner
-- Creative Mark No 6 scrubber
-- Creative Mark No 2 scrubber
-- Creative Mark T-26 palette knife
-- Old toothbrush
-- Clear wax crayon
-- Piece of sponge
Global Art pencil case containing...
-- 4B Derwent sketching pencils (3)
-- Bic .7mm Matic grip mechanical pencil
-- Blending stump
-- General's kneaded eraser
-- Aluminum pencil sharpener
5 x 7 Moleskine sketch journal
Business cards
Annual pass to Rocky Mountain National Park
Arches 140 lb cold press watercolor paper blocks (usually carry at least two in varying sizes)
Recycled carryout container with lid  (for holding water)
Spray bottle
Paper towels and/or travel tissue packets
Masking tape
*Flexible sports field cones
D5200 Nikon camera
Extra camera battery and lens cloth
Cell phone
First aid kit
Lip balm
Fox40 whistle and button compass on lanyard
Black Diamond Headlamp and backup flashlight
Bug spray
Hand sanitizer
Small bag and laundry pins for trash
Ziploc bags
*Cooler with ice packs

*Usually left in the car

I have a slightly different configuration for cold weather, and for prolonged hikes, but overall this is what I normally use.  If you're just starting out, I hope this list might give you a place to start. If you've been at it awhile, feel free to add a comment below about what YOU choose to take (or not take) whilst painting in the great outdoors.

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