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River and Canal - August 2012

Working on a tan and painting at the same time is no easy feat -- not only are you blinded by the sun but you're usually not getting the best view at the best time of day. Yet I was determined to get some sun during my visit to the US.  This year there was a further problem:  a new breed of mosquitoes that attack in broad daylight (also extremely abundant and potential carrier of West Nile Virus).  So I learned to apply "Deep Woods", set up anti-bug candles, and combine this with various degrees of sun block.  

"August in Yardley" (Delaware River in the distance)
23x30cm, oil on canvas

I also tried putting together an extremely lightweight oil sketching kit that I could carry around effortlessly.  Since I rarely have more than an hour or two to paint, this could be a solution for me because, while sketching is fun, I really miss oil painting. I tried it out on the canal in Yardley and when I was almost ready to go home, a man came by to fish -- providing the perfect final touch!

"The Canal"
20x20 cm, oil on canvas

Technical note (to myself):  Squeeze out some paint in small plastic box before going out / bring small tubes of extra paint (in plastic sandwich bag), a few brushes, a rag, a newspaper, turpentine, a small canvas, all in a lightweight backpack / apply mosquito repellent / take bike and find a bench with a view / lean the canvas against the backpack (easels are too heavy) and apply paint quickly but stay concentrated.  For the trip home, place the small canvas in the bottom of a grocery bag (paper bag inside and plastic bag outside) face up - this works as a makeshift lightweight wet canvas carrier (and can be attached to the handlebar of the bike).

Link to photo of my plastic box (leave the wooden box at home - too heavy): plastic box

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