Plein Air is derived from the french term“En Plein Air”used to describe the act of painting from life outdoors. During the late 19th century the Impressionists discovered the need to capture natural light on its own terms. With the advent of tubed paint and the french box easel, both still used today, artists were finally unchained from their studios.
Over 100 years later, many artists still consider plein air painting a critical part of their artistic growth. The opportunity to capture true color and light unfiltered by the shortcomings of the camera, continues to be the best way to hone the skill of “accurate seeing.”
In the past 10 years, many modern commercial artists have begun painting digitally. Initially for the sake of time and mess, and eventually for its own merits. Adobe Photoshop has grown into a powerful tool for not only editing photos but creating complex paintings in the classic tradition.
Most recently, digital painters have begun taking their computers outside, combining modern digital technology with the 100 year plein air tradition, and so, Digital Plein Air was born.