Sunday, 29 April 2012
SVPAP Member Blog Spot - Larry Lerew
Working en plein air is a wonderful process and quite a unique experience. I never feel relaxed or totally in control when I paint outdoors but edgy and excited about the possibilities of how my painting or sketch is going to talk to me and evolve. Painting outdoors is a chance to break out of my comfortable studio and breathe fresh air into my life and art. I take chances and risks to stretch my skills and hopefully gain new levels of achievement.
You might ask why I enjoy painting with the SVPAP when painting is so personal and needs to come from within. I think it’s the encouragement and understanding I feel from talking to others who share the same struggles, challenges and rewards. We all feel the constant need to paint whether we find success or not and we grow by learning and build confidence by working together.
I’ve been told my painting style is refreshing because it adds a new or different dimension to the SVPAP. I appreciate that compliment and have noticed others experimenting with limited palettes and new tools, etc. to have fun and explore. Working en plein air is a great way to open your mind and have fun painting like an uninhibited kid again.
Now since this is a members profile let me give you a little background. My first spark of interest in painting en plein air was with watercolor in the spring of 1970 with my small group of fellow high school art students and our instructor James E. Rabine III. Those lessons and painting in the outdoors stayed with me all my life and I have never come across anything else that captured my spirit and enthusiasm so completely. Later when I attended York Academy of Arts, we occasionally painted on the streets and in the parks as class assignments. We were encouraged in our work by excellent instructors and mentors such as William A. Falkler, Robert Patierno, Othmar Carli, Virgil Sova, Ted Fitzkee, Robert Sopchick, Michael Klinedinst and more, all contributing a valuable influence and positive aspirations to a new generation of professional artists.
Over the years I’ve kept busy with creative work in commercial art as a graphic designer, illustrator, cartoonist, publisher and sign painter. I even stretched my creative talents to include work as a professional clown and a caricaturist for corporate events and parties. Somehow my wife and I even found time to learn and enjoy Ballroom and Polka Dancing and performed in a hand bell choir while raising our two sons. All that was fun, interesting and challenging but those things were not the reason why I pursued an art career in the first place, which was to become an established fine artist. Since I’ve joined SVPAP I’m painting much more, reaching new levels and enjoy every minute of it. The SVPAP is a great resource and incentive to help me reach my goals and hopefully I can contribute and lead by example by encouraging others to experience the wonderful feeling of en plein air painting.
To see more of my art check out my website and blog: