Art, equipment, Landscape, oil painting, Painting, Plein Air

roof with a view


10″ x 8″ oil on canvas

The house we’re staying in has a sod roof from which there is a commanding view of the mountains, coastline and ocean. The sun finally came out yesterday so I hauled my paint box to the roof. The view of this painting is looking west (obviously) and the rock in behind the trees is, I believe, the same one I painted yesterday from a different point of view.

Below is a shot of my setup and view.


This is the first time I’ve used one of these umbrellas. It really helped with controlling the light on the panel and palette but it made the paint box unbalanced and it’s huge to carry. I may have to find a smaller lighter solution.

I also am not completely happy with the EasyL backpack I bought to haul all my painting gear. I’m always interested in how others handle these logistical problems. If anyone has experiences or solutions to share I hope you’ll leave a comment.

10 thoughts on “roof with a view”

  1. Bill,
    When our small plein air group goes out Saturday, I will ask the fellow who has an Easyl like yours — your query. Our group has 1 gorilla 9×12, 1 openboxM 11×14 [me], 1 Easyl 12×16, 1 Julliard French Easel, and one windsor-newton bristol portable easel………. i.e. we need to find someone who uses a Billups box, one who uses a AllaPrimaPochade, and one who uses a Soltek. And then find a wind storm and see whose pochade is left standing.


  2. I’m afraid I have no soutions for the problem of painting equipment, but I love the painting you did!


  3. I hope you and Leslie are having a wonderful time there where it seems like a little paradise! And may the clear air and beauty of surroundings add to Leslie’s speedy and complete recovery.
    Your paintings carry the wonder of mountains, coastline and view. I enjoy this latest painting, it has beautiful colour and composition.
    As for the gear…I wonder if there is really a solution to carrying all this painting gear. I’ve tried a couple of different things on different occasions and I always end up “complaning” about weight and discomfort and then about sturdiness and ease of assembling, and things falling off and toppling over etc. But nonetheless, enjoy your time painting!


  4. Ronell, Thanks for your very kind thoughts.

    I agree with you that there is no perfect solution and I’m sure I’ll always find something to complain about but one of the things I enjoy about this painting thing (maybe it’s a guy thing) is tinkering with my tools.

    I hope to see some more oil painting on your blog soon.


  5. Bill, sorry I’ve been out of the loop for a bit. I have the EasyL Pro and tripod, and thought about getting that same backpack, but I’ve been happy keeping the box in a canvas backpack from Daniel Smith that just fits perfectly with only the box in it. The tripod has its own case with shoulder strap. Since I go everywhere on foot or by bike, it helps to break things up like this rather than have the entire outfit in a large, heavy bag. I can fit the paint tubes and boards for each session inside the box, so it’s just the small backpack and separate tripod–two light pieces to carry around. I don’t use solvent, so that’s less to carry. Don’t have an umbrella either, though sometimes I’ve wished I did. At the recent plein air workshop I took, I was always one of the first to get everything set up and taken down. Anything you can do to simplify, helps, of course. I love tools too–I’m a certified bike mechanic–but my philosophy was that if I complicated my setup too much, I’d be less likely to go out and paint.

    This series of Oregon Coast paintings is great! Really looks like the Oregon coast that I remember! And I hope your wife continues to do well. She’s in my thoughts.


  6. I love my easyL.I keep the box permanently attached to the tripod and just carry it around as one unit. I have a small bungee cord strung across the front of the box to hold my paper towel roll.


  7. Kathy and David, thanks for your advice. I solved the umbrella part with a really nice one that folds up to be less than a foot long and very light. I got it here if you’re interested:

    The bag is another problem. I just don’t like this bag. It’s too big and unwieldy. I have a back pack I like that’s small and carries everythig I need except the box doesn’t quite fit in it. I was wondering if anyone had found another one that fits the EasyL. I’ll check out Daniel Smith site and see if I can see the one you’re using, Kathy. I don’t really want to carry the box attached to the tripod since I sometimes hike around a bit with it.


  8. Bill,

    “I will ask the fellow who has an Easyl like yours — your query.”

    I asked my associate, Craig Arrowood, and he has the same Easy-L quick release umbrella setup as you. He said it takes awile to get used to, but he loves it; especially the break off release in a wind storm.

    He does not hike far for his plein air so that might be the issue. I had to laugh because when I asked him this, it was overcast. 5 minutes later the mist disappeared and sun came out; and he did not bring his Easy-L umbrella.

    I did not buy an umbrella setup yet, but may in the future. My reason for not getting one is because I will tend to hike long distances [>1 mile] and weight will always be the biggest issue. Besides, since I am in the process of learning Plein Air I just have to stuggle with the bright light until I get it.



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