Michael Lynch

Inspired and Intuitive Painting Plein Air

September 10-15 2023
10-13 Students
Yellow Pine Ranch, LaVeta, CO
Open to all skills

Workshop Overview

4 day workshop 5 night stay | Arrive Sunday, depart Friday AM

Michael will be stressing the fundamentals of Plein Air Painting; color, good design, color temperature and values. These fundamentals are as valuable in the studio as they are on location. Over the years Michael had found that the plein air painting he has done has informed his studio work and painting in the studio has helped consolidate what he has learned on location. Painting on location is very valuable in becoming a skilled painter as you need to learn to paint quickly and accurately as the light changes very fast.  We will be working on smaller canvases outside. Sizes like 6x8, 8x10 and 9x12 are generally best suited to getting an accurate statement of the subject in a reasonable amount of time outside, especially in a workshop situation. And working smaller allows the artist to be less invested in the finished product and more likely to experiment and discover new approaches to their work.

The goal is for students to come to the class open to trying new things. The objective of a workshop should not be to come home with ten “finished” paintings, or to continue to repeat familiar and habitual techniques in your painting. Be willing to try different things this week! Michael is not trying to insist on a formula for treating your subjects, but rather a perspective that allows for an individual, inspired and intuitive approach to creativity. He looks forward to working with each painter individually to help refine and inform your work.

We’re always making discoveries when we go out with a group of fellow painters. There is a cross-pollination of techniques and approaches that happens whenever artists gather. A workshop presents the opportunity to share with other painters on many practical, technical and philosophical levels, as well as enjoying the camaraderie that many of us miss while working in the solitude that painting so often requires. We know that you’re making sacrifices to be here and we’ll do our best to make this a fun as well as an informative and productive time for everyone.

September is the best time of the year! Generally in the 70's with cool evenings..  All the changing colors are spectacular!

Meet your instructor

Michael Lynch grew up in Denver, Colorado. He exhibited an interest in drawing at an early age and, through a family move to Chicago in the early sixties, he was introduced to the great variety of work at the Chicago Art Institute. Of particular interest was the work of the American and European realist and impressionist painters. His enthusiasm for traditional painting led to the discovery of more and more information on artists and the seemingly endless possibilities of artistic expression. The idea of pursuing a career as a professional artist began to emerge.

Lynch's work, although primarily landscape also includes marine, portrait, figure, still life, and cityscape. His work is in many corporate and private collections throughout the U.S., Europe, and Japan and a number of his pieces were purchased for the U.S. Ambassador To The Netherlands residence in The Hague. He has had numerous one-man shows throughout the country and has exhibited in and been represented by many fine galleries including John Pence, San Francisco, Gerald Peters, Santa Fe, and Fenn Gallery, Santa Fe.

He has taught workshops throughout the country since 1989 and has an extensive resume as a lecturer on and teacher of the practice of outdoor painting. He has also created handcrafted 22k water gilt picture frames for much of his own work and produced one of a kind custom frames for collectors of his commissioned pieces. His commissioned work includes a recent major piece for the Cherokee Club in Atlanta, Ga.

VISIT Michael Lynch's WEBSITE

what to expect

"I visited this beautiful, elegant ranch in September this year.  All I can say is it was one of the most stunning settings I have explored looking for venues for the workshops. Everything is top-notch, the accommodations are splendid, a lot of thought went into the atmosphere, decorating and comfortable inviting cabins and chalets. I am "excited" and "thrilled" to share this with my artist friends and instructors. So picturesque, and we get to paint and experience it!  The pictures really don't do justice to the character. This is a 5-star property!" - Marty

For over 87 years, generations of families have cherished a return to our unbridled heritage of western hospitality. Historic barns of hand-hewn timbers, rail corrals, and fences grace this high valley ranch. And the spectacular natural surroundings are ideal for a painting experience. Long-distance views, a babbling brook and pastoral splendor of the mountain vistas, horses, an old barn and flowers, are so inspiring.



Keep it as light and portable as possible.  Lightweight and easy to carry.  Backpacks are great.

PAINTS: Everyone has colors and manufacturers that they prefer when choosing their palette. We use a range of colors that involves a “warm” and “cool” hue each of yellow, red, green and blue as well as two earth colors. Generally, Winsor Newton and Holbein are pretty dependable manufacturers. Utrecht is usually the least expensive and makes a solid Yellow Ocher, Cerulean Blue [Hue] and Cadmium Yellow Light and Cad Orange. Avoid their other colors on this list.

Earth Colors     
Yellow Ochre
Burnt Sienna

Cadmium Lemon  [cool]
Cadmium Yellow Light  [warm]


Alizarin, or Rose Madder  [cool]
Cadmium Orange  [warm]

Viridian  [cool]
Sap Green  [warm]

Cerulean Blue Hue   [cool]
Ultramarine Blue   [warm]

Titanium White

CANVASES: Primed linen canvas in a variety of smaller sizes, especially 6x8, 8x10, and 9x12. Figure on doing two paintings a day. You can bring canvas mounted on panels [available commercially – and expensively – from SourceTek, or made yourself] or stretched canvas. If the latter, make sure you have a backing on your easel that keeps the sun from shining through from behind.

Claessens oil-primed linen canvas [#13 for small canvases, #15 or #66 for larger work, single or double primed] is the one we prefer above others.

BRUSHES and PALETTE KNIVES: Bring a variety of brushes in various sizes. Bristle, mongoose or badger, watercolor mops, whatever you feel comfortable working with. A good selection of sizes and types will allow you to explore what it’s like to put paint on the canvas and manipulate it using different tools to create different effects.

This is true of palette knives, too, when it comes to putting on or taking off paint. Several in the small to the larger range [2” or so] should do.

OTHER EQUIPMENT: It’s always suggested that one never try bringing new [unfamiliar] equipment on an expedition. This certainly holds true for outdoor painting.

  • Bring a French easel [half or full-size], or a tripod and pochad box, or whatever rig you’re comfortable painting with outside.
  • A portable palette [such as an “Easel Pal”] or similar set-up that allows you to put out paint and cover it for the night is very convenient.
  • An umbrella can be helpful at times, but often causes as much hassle as it prevents, whether from difficulties setting up or wind-related accidents. We don’t use them.
  • A knapsack or canvas bag with:
    • Baseball cap or other brimmed painting hat
    • Small sketchpad and pencils/charcoal
    • Paper Towels
    • Mineral Spirits
    • Can/container for mineral spirits
    • Plastic wrap for covering paint overnight
    • Bug Spray
    • Sunscreen
    • Water
    • Some container for transporting and storing wet paintings
    • Comfortable dark or neutral clothing that doesn’t reflect on the canvas


This price does NOT include lodging tax. All-inclusive, most rooms with private baths, three meals daily, appetizers after class, and wine or beer with happy hour and with dinner. Non-painting spouse $825
White Paint Splatter Divider


how to apply
or call 719-545-2795
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