En Plein Air Painting in Rathmines

Practically all this month, the weather has been atrocious, so I headed in to Rathmines yesterday morning to take advantage of the unexpectedly fine weather and paint the Four-faced Liar (as the clock tower of Rathmines is known locally).

Today I brought a set of Golden Open acrylics with me as I don’t want to get oil paint on my handsome new Honda scooter! I brought these extended-drying-time acrylics to give them a dry-run (Ha ha) before I take them on the road in earnest. I’m still getting used to the feel of them -they feel partly like oils inasmuch as they have a longish drying time but they still have that acrylics ‘drag’ when starting out on a painting. By that, I mean that oils have that ease of application that makes covering a canvas so easy. Other than that, these Open acrylics are a decent mid-way between the two -and the pigment load is excellent. Consequently, carting a newly painted artwork back home is a little easier.

Every time I go out en plein air painting I meet lovely people who stop to chat for a short while, so thanks for stopping by everyone. I chatted with a couple about the clock tower’s nickname (Four-faced Liar) and even imparted to them the story about the dome on the Church of Mary Immaculate having been a secondhand purchase after the original sale to an Orthodox church in St Petersburg failed due to the Revolution in 1917. 

I’ve always thought that Rathmines was the centre of the world ever since I woke with a raging toothache not long after I arrived in Dublin from London in 1988. I hared into Rathmines on my bicycle at around 4AM to the only all-night pharmacy I knew of to get some paracetomol. I worked with fellow in my first ever job in Dublin who called Rathmines, ‘The Erogenous Zone’ because of all the students!

Anyway, I painted until I realised I was hungry; packed up my easel, brushes and paints and headed home.

If you’re interested in combining learning to paint with a healthy dose of fresh air and meeting friendly, motivated people, I’m running a weekend landscape painting weekend in An Grianán, Termonfeckin on September 1st -3rd. You can find all the details and book here at this link. Book before August 1o and get a free Fabriano Venezia A6 sketchbook.