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May 22, 2013

Disney Artists from the '50s Paint a Tree En Plein Air...

Here is an old and entertaining Disney short about several artists painting the same tree outdoors as a group. Filmed in 1958 for educational purposes, it was something I remember seeing in grade school, and as a young child it made me want to go paint outside early on.

If you are viewing this on Facebook click here to watch on YouTube.

This clip runs a good 15 minutes. If you become bored at the outset jump to the 6:28 mark when the animators head outside to paint outdoors. It's nice to know plein air painting didn't completely disappear during the salad days of Modernism. Modernism may have impacted the plein air genre but it did not kill it.

No matter how far away from Naturalism a Disney movie went, Walt insisted his animators start at the source, which to him was the real world. This makes Walt close kin to the likes of Cezanne, who once said "Nature is the best instructor" and William Merritt Chase, who said, "I don't believe in making pencil sketches and then painting a landscape in your studio. You must be right under the sky."

In fact, Disney Studios has helped train thousands of artists to work directly from life. This video shows why.


© 1958 Disney Studios | All Rights Reserved.

2 reader comments:

Kath Schifano said...

Ugh! the link is removed, I have seen this film at least 100 times, I showed it to all my HS classes for years, before that, the elementary kids watched. Every time the big reel played I saw something new in it, and I loved hearing Walt quoting Robert Henri. This was before I became a serious painter, I would like another look to see what else I could learn! Thanks for trying.
Kath Schifano

Thomas Jefferson Kitts said...

Sorry to hear this Kath but not surprised. It seems it is all about property and ownership now, not about sharing ideas and inspiration. Those are times I miss.