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Outdoor Sketching

Four Talks Given before the Art Institute of Chicago; The Scammon Lectures, 1914

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Published: 1914
Language: English
Wordcount: 22,862 / 72 pg
Flesch-Kincaid Reading Ease: 51.3
LoC Category: NC
Downloads: 690
Added to site: 2008.11.28 22717
Genre: Essays

My chief reason for confining these four talks to the outdoor sketch is because I have been an outdoor painter since I was sixteen years of age; have never in my whole life painted what is known as a studio picture evolved from memory or from my inner consciousness, or from any one of my outdoor sketches. My pictures are begun and finished often at one sitting, never more than three sittings; and a white umbrella and a three-legged stool are the sum of my studio appointments.

Show Excerpt

>first sight. If, as you look, the first impression becomes weakened, perhaps it is because the immediate foreground, which at the first glance was clear, is now dotted with passers-by, thus obscuring your point of interest, or a cloud has passed over the sky, lowering the whole tone, or the group of figures across the light has dispersed, exposing the ugly right-angled triangle of the flat wall and street level instead of the same lines being broken picturesquely with the black dots of heads of the crowd itself. In a moment it is no longer a composition of the same power that struck you at first. Perhaps while you sit and wait the scene again changes, and something infinitely more interesting, or the reverse, is evolved from the perspective before you. And so it goes on, until this constantly changing kaleidoscope repeats itself in its first aspect, until you have fairly grasped its meaning and analyzed its component parts. Or until either the effect that first delighted you, or the subsequent effect th



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