Plein Air Tip Guide Course - Phil Starke Studio




Plein Air painting is enjoyed by a multitude of artists today. I've been painting plein air since taking classes at the American Academy of Art in Chicago. Each day I looked for opportunities to paint on the streets, to put into practice what I was learning in the classroom from teachers who were impressing on me how important it was to get out and paint if I wanted to improve. Since then, I've continued to venture outside and paint in all seasons, no matter how challenging. I've also been teaching plein air workshops for over 20 years. So I know how the plein artist thinks and what the frustrations are.

-- Cindy Salaski, Co-founder and CEO of, and author of  "Oil Painting with the Masters: Essential Techniques from Today's Top Artists"

"Phil makes each lesson so interesting that I want to keep learning from him.  His video lessons are exceptional because he goes into great depth to explain what will make the painting better.  Phil is unique because I believe he really cares about his students.  He puts so much time energy, and effort into his teaching methods that, in my opinion, he leaves all the other instructors in the dust.

-- Donna Yeager, Pastel Artist & Instructor

Phil Starke is excellent about explaining the basics of shapes, values, edges, the effect of light, color theory and their relationships. Watching you paint, how you apply the paint and even how you hold the brush is very helpful. Your ability to expertly and quickly pack so much information into your demonstrations is extremely helpful.  I've taken classes and workshops with many of the top painters and instructors in this country, and without a doubt, you are the best. You always give an informative and well thought out demonstration.  You clearly are comfortable explaining each step of the way and you give your knowledge freely. If someone were to ask me about Phil's videos, I would say that it is a great investment in their painting journey.  Each video has so much information that you will want to watch it over and over again and keep applying what you are learning.

The outdoors is a great place to learn for artists of all styles and subjects. Painting outdoors requires a quick response to the atmosphere around you. Responding to how the light is affecting your surroundings, creating a strong design, interpreting the color and distance, help the artist use observational skills and refresh creativity. Plein Air painting isn't about finding the perfect spot and turning it into a beautiful painting. It's about seeing and responding to the environment around you. There's a certain appeal to working outdoors that can't be found anywhere else.

Phil demonstrating at his Greece Plein Air Workshop

The book contains 50 of the most common problems from my workshops and 65 images to help demonstrate and clarify the solutions. Some problems you'll find in this book:

  • I can't seem to draw with a brush.
  • How do I mix difficult colors?
  • What color are shadows?
  • How do I see the landscape in shapes instead of detail?
  • Why do my paintings look so flat?
  • How do I make my compositions interesting?
  • In-between workshops you can keep working and advancing so you'll be able to focus on new skill development at your next workshop. This guide is like having a workshop instructor with you whenever you need it. You're not just learning to copy from another artist, you'll gain information that shows you the skills to move through those stumbling blocks, meeting those challenges that prevent a painting trip to the outdoors from being that enjoyable experience you were expecting. Many artists go to school in hopes of acquiring the skills they need to move forward with a career as an artist, but most often we find out that much of the practical experience needed is simply learned the hard way outside of school. Without guidance from senior peers, initial mistakes can be costly, and waste lots of time. This book and videos are designed to not only give you technical knowledge, but also how to avoid pitfalls common to plein air painting. This book and videos are suitable for the beginner as well as advanced artist. It's designed for any artist interested in improving their skills.


    Everything to help you be successful during those trips to paint outdoors, to bringing the field sketch and your photographic references back into the studio to produce a finished studio painting. This course is a fraction of the cost of any Art School or University course. And you have access to all this, 24 hours per day/7 days per week, to review as many times as you want or need.


    Also included with this course is a photo resource package for your practice.

    The Book Videos are not downloadable because of the large size of the video file.


    If you want a smaller course, I've got the boo and all the videos that go with the book. The Book and Videos can all be viewed online, and The Book is downloadable if you like.

    The Book Videos are not downloadable because of the large size of the video file.


    Get a great basic start to Plein Air painting.  You'll avoid a lot of problems others have already gone through.  No need to learn everything the hard way.  Access the book online or download it.

    About the Author --

    My formal studies covered seven years, attending University of Central Missouri, the Art Institute of Chicago and the American Academy of Art, where I received my degree.  From the beginning, travel has been an important part of providing my collectors with a wide variety of subject matter. Travel has also allowed me to stay fresh, painting plein air, stimulated by the light and color of my surroundings. I am represented by several galleries around the country and teach workshops on location as well as online.  I am a workshop teacher for the Scottsdale Artists School and for the Tucson Art Academy Online.

    --Sandy Smith,  Arizona

    The consistent emphasis you provide during the videos telling us not to skip the foundational aspects of the painting; to make several thumbnail value sketches; to try different orientations of the proposed landscape, i.e. you tell us to make it more rectangular, more square, more sky, less sky, gives the student a quick idea of what the finished product might be.  You have achievable objectives for the student in each video lesson, while consistently reviewing and relaying relevant lessons.  If a student wants consistent foundational instruction and suggestions regarding how to improve his work, I would highly recommend purchasing your videos.

    -- Brad Pearson, Arizona

    Phil Starke's lessons have been the most useful to me that I have found. After years of art school and books getting me nowhere, a few truly useful tips from his videos have helped my paintings improve dramatically. Phil's videos and lessons are full of extremely useful information.  Having the right tools and information has helped me make progress. I highly recommend any Phil Starke classes or videos to anyone serious about learning to paint.