Plein air is a technique for painting from life. En plein air is a French term for "in open air". Typically this means painting outdoors. The challenge with this type of painting is having to deal with the elements of nature, primarily changing light. While I have dozens of finished plein air pieces available, many serve the purpose of field sketches that are used to develop full studio works at a later date. Most of the images you see are taken in stages, on location, as the painting developed. Alla prima, an Italian term, refers to the technique of wet-on-wet or first attempt primarily with oil paints. I work mostly in oils with some pastels being done plein air. Most of my plein air pieces are created within a 2 hour window, in one sitting: Something known as Direct Painting. Cloudy days offer the artist a chance to "dabble" more as the light is more forgiving.