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Lecture: Plein-air movement: Narrator: Listen to a part of a lecture in a studio art class. Professor: Ok, everybody. Today we start our section on the Plein-air movement. The term Plein-air itself is a print phrase meaning open air. The movement refers to paintings that were done outdoors in the open area, you see, rather than inside in the studio where painting traditionally to play. The Plein-air movement is usually considered to have begun in the 17th century in Rome, but it didn't become popular in Europe and the United States until the 19th century. Linear painting involves close observation of nature and representing the landscape accurately as it appears under the changing conditions of light, atmosphere and weather. That's why you have to be outside to do it. An idea that was one revolutionary. You see, landscape painting wasn't generally considered a serious or sophisticated activity before this movement began. For those who were painting landscape, it used to be normal practice just to produce a rough sketch outside, then go inside the studio and create the painting from the sketch, because it really wasn't convenient to paint outside. But then, well, a new kind of easel was invented in the 19th century, the French easel, it was light and portable, perfect for carrying around outside to some beautiful location. That and another invention help Plein-air painting take root. The pen paints it. Because before the 19th century, you have to buy paint as a pigment in powdered form, and then mix it yourself with the medium, say, oil. But this paint was already mixed and came in a resealable tube for easy transportation and preservation. Now when we talk about the Plein-air movement, we need to take a close to look at another movement – French impressionism. It started in the second half of the 19th century. French impressionism value the naturalness and open area that was conveyed by Plein-air painting. So they adopted the Plein-air painting approach. You're all familiar with the French impressionist Claude Monet. Monet preferred the painting outside and so helped popularize the Plein-air movement. Sometimes he'd exaggerated that he didn't need a studio at all nature with his studio. Monet will bring several canvases with him outdoors. He paint the same scene on each canvas, but at different times of the day, and continue on each canvas the next day when the appropriate light return. Monet and other French impressionist painters, use small brushstrokes and intense colors for the depiction of light, which was an unconventional painting technique at that time. The French impressionists believed that art should be objective. That is, it could capture what the artist actually sees at a particular place and time. That meant getting out of the studios, which is what we're going to do today. So on your way out, grab a French easel if you've never set one up before, I'll tell you how, before you leave. Find a spot where you can paint nature, heating in mind that you don't need to be anywhere exotic, local park or flower garden will work just fine. Once you set up, study what's in front of you. Try to accurately depict how light is affecting the scene, the Plein-air painting you paint from life, not from your memory or your own ideas, which wouldn't be an accurate depiction. Although I could also mention that you don't have to paint everything you see in order to be accurate. Think about what the essence of your painting is. If your purpose is to capture the peaceful quality of sunlight on a group of trees in the park, you don't have to paint ... say a garbage can just because it's actually there in the scene. The main challenge will be the ever-changing light. Natural light on anything changes quickly, so work fast. People might wanna talk to you and ask you about your work. But try not to get interrupted, remember Monet and all those canvases, you only have one.