Packing for Plein Air Painting

Packing for Plein Air Painting

Rod Coyne shares what he’s packing for plein air painting these days. The full one hour video is now available on DVD and Digital Download here.

With over 20 years experience, Rod Coyne is one of the most exciting landscape painters in Ireland today. This DVD is about spontaneity, visual composition, and trusting your inner impulse. Whether you want to loosen up your landscape painting style or sit back and rod do the work – this master-class is for you. With his affable approach, this artist will inspire painters and Ireland fans alike.

There’s more to “Secrets of the Palette Knife” than just painting. Spend a day with artist Rod Coyne in the spectacular surroundings of the “Garden of Ireland”. He invites you to his plein air studio on a hidden shore of the Avoca River. In this 60 minute film Coyne shares a both hypnotising and meditative insight into the process of creating a picture from beginning to end. The artist’s expert guidance into palette painting will whisk you along just as the River flows through the Vale of Avoca.



The full one hour video is now available on DVD and Digital Download here.

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Rod’s Red Rock Video

“There was always a big chance that  the creation of Red Rock would not  be born on video at all. There’s always so much to concentrate on when painting a big canvas en plein air that filming the whole affair has to be kept as a secondary priority so as not to distract me from the main event. I never have a camera man with me or any other technical helper so my footage is often off the mark or the batteries run out ages before I notice.”

But this day’s painting was different as I knew exactly what composition I wanted and which canvas I was going to use. The Skelligs features at least once on a residency at Cill Rialaig and this time I had left it till my last day at the Retreat. I actually love the fact that the Star Wars franchise has been celebrating the majesty of these holy islands and now here I was with ten days painting under my belt and ready to pay homage to the island cathedral.

The time-lapse camera watches every brush stoke patiently.
The time-lapse camera watches every brush stoke patiently.

Big canvases are susceptible to any sort of wind so I prefer to secure them to something sturdier that my flimsy easel. While the pier wall offered the perfect position for the perfect view I still needed to get creative in how to lash it to the stonework. Years of working on movie sets in an earlier life has given me a kind of can-do attitude towards this type of problem. Some heavy duty screws and a couple of bungy cords later and it was attached rock solid.


"Red Rock" work in progress on Glen Pier.

“Red Rock” work in progress on Glen Pier.

Then to the cameras; I used three on that day. One time-lapse camera with no view finder which has to aimed purely on intuition. Secondly, I had a temperamental go-pro up close to the canvas. And finally I filmed all the B-roll stuff using my smart phone. As usual while painting and filming somethings didn’t work out as planned and other things occurred which I had never expected. The upshot in both cases was that the happy accidents far outweighed the disastrous ones and I was very pleased with the results. The painting gave me a sense of instant gratification on the day but it was ten months before I got a chance to work with the footage. Editing the video over the period of a few nights transported me back to painting on that breezy, sunny day on Glen Pier in Co. Kerry. And now it’s done I’m delighted I took the time to allow for the second priority of the day. I hope you like it too, if so, please share.” – Rod Coyne.

Featured in Rod's upcoming exhibition "Red Rock" 2017, triptych 50x70cm x3, oil on canvas.
Featured in Rod’s upcoming exhibition “Red Rock” 2017, triptych 50x70cm x3, oil on canvas.


Happy with his day's work Rod's allows himself a little victory wave in front of the just finished Red Rock.
Happy with his day’s work Rod’s allows himself a little victory wave in front of the just finished Red Rock.

Read more about the “Seeing Red” exhibition.

See more of Rod’s videos on YouTube.





Painting Demo Video with a Star Wars Slant

Painting Demo Video – How the West was Won!

Rod Coyne painted this picture, ” Skelligs Arch ” at Dr. Noelle Campbell-Sharp’s Origin Gallery . The live painting demo was a part of his “Waters Soft & Wild” exhibition in October 2015. This demo was captured with a time lapse camera. Sit back a see just how this little part of the West was Won by a determent artist wielding a palette knife.

Painting Demo Video – Star Wars couldn’t resist!

To date two Star Wars movies have embraced the Skelligs as a ready-to-go film set. It’s no wonder of course, these two sentinel islands lay on the Europe’s most westerly fringe and drip with otherworldly presence. Skellig Michael and Skellig Beag have featured heavily in Rod Coyne’s paintings since the year 2000 and his first residency at the singular Cill Rialaig Artists Retreat. Yet he first painted them on a 1st year field trip with the Crawford College of Art.

Painting Demo Video – Star Wars pays homage to Rod

“Like some many of my generation Luke Skywalker and Darth Vader’s rivalry were an integral backdrop to my childhood and early teenage years. Sure the story existed in another time and a galaxy far away but for an Irish kid the first three movies occupied a realm completely alien to 1970’s Ireland. They also represented a glamorous, sophisticated America which seemed as far off to me as the worlds and planets depicted on the silver screen.

Movie still: Luke vs Vader.
Movie still: Luke vs Vader.

Fast forward to the present and the long awaited release of The Force Awakens and I could barely contain my excitement and expectation of how my Skelligs were going to be integrated into the story line. Disney were actually paying homage to my central painting motif. I wasn’t disappointed with the islands depiction but I did leave the table hungry.

Movie Still: Rae and Luke perched atop of Skellig Michael.
Movie Still: Rae and Luke perched atop of Skellig Michael.

But last month I got my fill and just relished every layer of that truly alien landscape as revealed in The Last Jedi. I have to guess that after such prolonged exposure that is one set we will no longer be seeing in future Star Wars Productions. I’m fine with that, they’ve recognized something I discovered for myself decades ago. They’ve paid homage to the great island cathedral which was once the last bastion of Christianity throughout the dark ages.” – Rod Coyne.

” Skelligs Arch ” is available as canvas print on this site.

” Skelligs Arch ” the original canvas available on this site.



Paint a Flower in 3 Minutes Video – Avoca Painting School

Paint a Flower in 3 Minutes with Avoca Painting School! Rod Coyne puts the Tuesday Morning class through their paces – and they come up shining! Soundtrack by Remo De Vico:

“Recently we tried some really cool painting exercises in the Avoca Painting School with a 3 minute colour sketch in acrylic paint. I’ll really recommend this exercise for anyone wanting to loosen up the brush stokes, you’ll be amazed how much you can depict in such a short time”, says Rod Coyne.