Hi, I'm Mary Kemp, passionate painter of anything to do with the seaside.
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Monday, 17 November 2014

Painting En Plein Air. Everyone Knows That It's Different For Girls.

This is what happens if you're a man.
You decide you want to do a bit of open air painting or drawing. You get up, throw on your old work clothes, gather together your painting kit and off you go.
Town or country you get yourself in a good spot nicely settled and get on with it. If any one approaches you, unless you want a chat, you glare at them and they go away.
Eastfield Allotments. Mary Kemp.

But every one knows it's different for girls.

We may ( possibly!) be equal as artists and business people  but when it comes to being stationary alone in a public place women have a distinct disadvantage.
Sometimes it seems that every male with a bit of time on his hands wants to give you a piece of advice. If it's not "chatting you up", it's paternalistic concern "You want to watch out for dodgy characters, love".
What is a girl to do?
We're robust, we can deal with it, but in case a bit of help is needed here's a few tips.

  • Keep moving. Take lots of photos, you're not as interesting taking photos. Everyone does it now.
  • Take a minder with you. Preferably male. Two girls together and that's double attraction!
  • Take a child with you , but they are distracting.
  • Take a dog with you that barks when anyone approaches.
  • Go in a group. Now that's intimidating to any predator!
    Monsal Head in Derbyshire. Ladies who sketch
  • Paint where no one goes. ( Could still be a bit uneasy though because you can't be sure)
  • Sit in your car.
  • Grow old and wear baggy clothes.
I don't often paint outdoors, I don't like the whole ritual of so much equipment, but I do draw given a warm day . I'm a little older now so don't get approached quite so often and count that as a blessing. My minder is my long suffering husband, and sometimes I go out with a group of friends.

Mary Kemp. Tree in Burghley Park.
Three of us and a cold day!




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