No date set for 2020
Eastsound area, Orcas Island

There are lots of hazards to painting out of doors, but much to be gained.  Seeing what is really there in light and shadow and color helps you to grow as an artist. How to do it without being defeated by the problems is the focus of this day, and the challenge of any day working plein air. And we couldn’t choose a more delightful location with plenty of choices than Knapp farm.

First we will: Keep it simple.  To avoid biting off too much we will spend some time getting familiar with the location and taking in what is there. When you zero in on a subject I will help you to – a) get comfortable, b) do a plan or study of your idea (some demonstration of this), c) draw it up on your paper.

Simplify your painting technique.  Outdoor painting tends include more direct painting. Your plan helps you to not chase the sun and remember the shadows that interested you. If you choose a wet-on-wet start, get that down before lunch and take a break while the start dries. We will review several ways of doing direct painting. One possible choice is to do color studies and get to more subjects.

There will be several short demonstrations of the steps to a painting — not too long so there is plenty of time for you to work on your painting.

This is a one-day workshop in a delightful setting that helps you with the problems of painting  plein air. Not to be missed.

Getting There:

If you come by ferry, you may want to walk on – avoiding reservations etc. – and plan on a taxi meeting you and bringing you to Knapp’s farm. It is about 20 minutes from the ferry landing. The price is less than a ferry ticket and you don’t have to be in line 45 minutes before sailing.  If you do come by ferry, be sure and get a reservation and contact me for a commuter ticket that saves about $20 (costing $30)

Driving – from the ferry go left with the main stream of traffic and stay straight for about 8 miles, as you come down the hill and can see water again you may turn right into Eastsound for coffee, bathrooms etc. or you may continue straight. If you stay straight the road takes a 90 degree turn to the right – past the airport and the fire house. Mt. Baker Rd. Stay on it till it ends at a T. Go left about 200 yards to Buckhorn Rd. Turn right on Buckhorn and Knapp Farm will be the first on the left, across from Jensen Rd.

Sign on a fence post that will let you know you are there.

If you are in Eastsound, take one of the streets away from the water (Prune Alley or North Beach Rd) and continue to the 2-way stop on Mt. Baker Rd. Turn right and follow the directions abov


If you are in Olga, go back toward town on Olga Rd but do not turn left. After passing Mt. Baker Rd. on your left, turn right on Buckhorn.

Bring a sack lunch if possible but you may run back into Eastsound.




looks complicated to say the least

What to bring is always a question.  Keep it simple! You will be walking about 50 yards so watch you weight but be comfortable.

There isn’t a really good watercolor easel yet designed… Where do you put your palette and your water – as well as your painting?

On the right she is holding her palette. Better if you can have something stable that supports it and the water.  Below are some other solutions.  A beach chair with your palette and water on the ground and your painting board on your arm rests is an easy one.  Some sit on the ground on a blanket. Give it some thought.

Be sure to include :

  • 2 or more 1/4 sheets or 1/2 sheets of Arches 140 lb cold press paper Please!
  • a board larger than your paper

a palette that includes yellow, orange,  a staining (dye) green such as pthalo, a dye blue such as pthalo, violet and anything else you wish.  My palette is in the general list: recommendation for supplies .

All either low enough to the ground or with support for the palette except for the person on the right.

other stuff:

  • Two water containers – keep them small like one-portion yogurt containers
  • 1 qt water
  • tissue (TP works best) inside a qt-sized yogurt container
  • sunglasses, sun block, hat, jacket in case of a cool wind
  • the pad or small chair and/or easel
  • something to carry it in – recommend a back pack
  • lunch


One solution – a very lightweight table!

Send either a $50 deposit to hold your place, balance due at the start of class on June 26, or the full $80 deposit to

Buchanan Watercolor Ltd

PO Box 218 Olga WA 98279

You can download this or include



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Call me if you have any questions.  360-298-2641