Plein Air Easels
Weight, bulk and ease of use are the most important factors in choosing an easel for painting en plein air. Now the season is on us, let me help you make a decision. There is an enormous choice of many excellent products (and many poor ones too) so it’s often good to get a nudge in one direction or other.
Although I like many different easels on the market, the purpose of this post is to help you get started on painting without getting bogged down in the details of a plethora of competing products. This product is good and will work very well for you. So this post does contain a link to a specific product which I like and I am an affiliate; This post contains affiliate links. This means I may earn a commission should you chose to make a purchase or sign up for a program using my link. It’s okay – I stand over this product, and you will too.
If you’re looking for a solid but lighweight en plein air easel but are confused by the huge array of possibilities, you couldn’t do better than buying one of these: The materials used are premium quality, combining Baltic Birch wood with stainless steel and aluminum accents to ensure robustness in critical areas. All hardware is non-corrosive, ensuring long-lasting performance.
The u.go Pochade Box incorporates a smart magnetic design, employing strong rare earth magnets for various components, such as the secure closure, panel/canvas holder, removable side wall for palette cleaning or replacement, and accessory side tray attachment.
With universal 1/4″ tripod mounts, the pochade box easily fits to any photographer’s tripod, which are very easy to come by (I got a very good heavy model and a lightweight cheap one just through Adverts.ie and I use them both depending on the day). Included with the box is a high-density plastic palette, suitable for oil paints and easily cleanable with solvents. Dry acrylic paint can be effortlessly peeled off, simplifying your cleanup process.
When it comes to surfaces, this pochade box accommodates a maximum recommended painting surface of 9″ vertical. Its stainless steel panel holders use ‘teeth’ capable of securely holding panels as thin as 1/16″ or stretched canvases up to 3/4″ thick, offering you a good range of canvas possibilities.
Above all is the size and weight though. You can carry your painting kit in a canvas shoulder bag and that counts for a lot when traipsing to and from your painting destination. I’ve used everything from those wooden portable sketching easels which are awkward to use, to the huge ‘Julian’ type easels which are awkward AND heavy. I’ve even cobbled up my own one from a tabletop box easel and photographer’s tripod: none are as convenient as this one.
Happy painting everybody,