“Maury and I have been painting together since he was a young kid,” Robin says. “We had an art show together when he was 11 years old, and he sold more paintings than I did! Now he’s 30 and a good painter; he’s a peer. He actually teaches me now — he’s shown me some design stuff that he’s picked up in the gaming industry. I believe this was the first time he painted tulips with me, but Maury comes along whenever he can to paint with me. He flew into Tucson to paint with me after the Plein Air Convention. He comes in for plein air events when he gets some time off, so we have been around the country painting together quite a bit.”
Maury is a game designer and a concept artist at Harebrained Schemes in Washington State, and he has always done traditional painting on the side, according to his father. Painting allows them to spend time together while doing something they both love. Does Robin see any similarities in their painting styles?
“When I see him paint in oil, I do see a common style, but I don’t know if it is genetic or if he was paying attention to what I do. I see certain compositional sensibilities in common, and even a familiar brush style. I did help him learn how to paint when he was young, but this is now pretty much all his own. A lot he has picked up from school and through his own development. He has a little bit of a different palette than I do.”
The Weisses joined 15 other painters on the tulip outing to Roozengaarde Display Gardens in Mount Vernon, Washington under the auspices of the Plein Air Washington Artists (PAWA). “The tulip festival is something that everyone around here really waits for,” says Robin. “The tulips came out earlier than usual last year and later this year. They were just starting to burst out on Saturday, but the daffodils were amazing. I try to get out there every year.”
The artist continues, “Mostly it’s the bright, beautiful colors in an often gray and overcast landscape that appeals to me. The flowers are in every shade of red, but also in deep purples and blues. Also, the tulip fields draw crowds from all over the state, country, and world, so all that activity, all of those figures out there in the fields, are fun to paint. I tried to get as many figures in there as I could on Saturday because they add so much interest to the painting.”