Plein air landscape painting in the Alps can be some of the most rewarding art creation anywhere. When the weather is good, the majesty of the mountains is just stunning. The Swiss have also done a good job of keeping their (rather unfortunate) modern architecture concentrated in pockets, usually in the valleys.
Below are my plein air landscape sketches from a week of teaching a workshop with the Alpine Atelier in Gryon, Switzerland.
Above Les Plans. 30 x 40 cm, oil on panel.
Logs Along a Road, Bex. 20 x 30 cm, oil on panel.
Dents du Midi Above the Clouds (from Gryon). 25 x 35 cm, oil on panel.
We had pretty bad weather. The previous sketch is from when we drove up to Gryon to get over the low clouds which sat in our valley for much of the week.
Buvette de La Ferme, Les Plans. 25 x 35 cm, oil on panel.
We stayed above Bex in the picturesque little village of Les Plans. Above is the farm where we ate everyday on the course.
Path in the Woods. 35 x 25 cm, oil on panel.
Chalet in Les Plans. 25 x 35 cm, oil on panel.
New Chalets, Gryon. 30 x 40 cm, oil on panel.
Cows in the Snow, Les Plans. 20 x 30 cm, oil on panel.
The Alpine landscapes are a real joy to paint when the sun comes out.
Utility Poles above Les Plans. 28 x 40 cm, oil on panel.
Muveran Sketch. 20 x 25 cm, oil on panel.
Unfortunately, the sketch below shows what our valley looked like much of the course. As I mentioned in the last post, difficult conditions can often be more conducive to good painting. Overall I’m pretty happy with the work both I and my students produced over the week.
Road in the Snow, Les Plans. 30 x 40 cm, oil on panel.
(This was my second plein air painting trip to this area of Switzerland. You can see my ‘barn series’ from Gstaad and Saanen in 2009 here).
My car broke down in the little Italian town of Soave on my way home. It also happens to be where they make my favorite white wine. Here is a quick sketch from the rainy morning after.
Old Walls in Soave. 30 x 40 cm, oil on panel.