Wednesday, November 28, 2012

PleinAir Magazine Post on the DVD

I just received the article below in my email this morning! Thank you!

Now You Can Learn Lost Techniques
of the Hudson River School Painters
Rediscovered by a Passionate Artist

America has long been fascinated with the Hudson River School painters, and artists have tried to emulate these fabulous paintings for the last hundred years. Yet, without understanding these painters’ techniques, most could never capture the look and feel of their work. The Hudson River School techniques are like the Holy Grail of American painting. The story of their rediscovery and the detective work involved is fascinating.

About the Hudson River School Painters

Thomas Cole
Thomas Cole, American Painter, 1801-1848

From 1825 to 1875, the members of the Hudson River School art movement documented the landscape of America, primarily in the Hudson River Valley, the Catskills, the Adirondacks of New York, and the White Mountains of New Hampshire. The group, which emerged under the leadership of Thomas Cole, had a style all their own, which has become the most coveted of all American painting styles. These realistic and detailed paintings often romanticized pastoral settings, showing the coexistence of man and nature.

Kindred Spirits, 1849 by Asher Brown Durand

The Hudson River School artists had a style and a technique that was purely American. Sadly, most of those techniques died with the painters themselves. It is rare to find a painter today who can can capture the essence and feel of the Hudson River School, the sense of dramatic light, the feel of distance and air, and the emotional impact that gives you chills when you view their paintings. The luminosity of this iconic American style has long been sought after.

Sadly, the Hudson River School techniques died with the painters and their students as realism fell out of vogue over the past 100 years.

A Long Journey of Discovery

Mt. Pleasant Hotel
While most American kids grow up in the suburbs of our cities, Erik Koeppel grew up in the White Mountains of New Hampshire, where he awakened each day to stunning vistas and color-filled skies. Because his father managed a classic old hotel that had been a frequent stop for the Hudson River School painters, Erik grew up aware of the Hudson River School, and with their work, rather than video games, as his influences. That exposure to the School’s history prompted Koeppel’s curiosity and passion for its painters, yet as he became interested in learning their techniques, he soon discovered he could find no one in America who could teach him.

Nowhere to Turn

No one, it seemed, could answer the question of how the Hudson River School masters achieved the feeling and emotion in their paintings. Though there were lots of people who wanted to sway Koeppel to study Impressionism or modernism, and many who discouraged him from following the path of these great American masters, Koeppel wasn’t going to give up until he found answers.

Like a Painting Archaeologist

Old Artist Letters
Unfazed by the lack of teachers and driven by the desire to know the exact techniques used to create such masterpieces, Koeppel made it his mission to study the Hudson River School painters. Like an archaeologist sifting though sand for clues, Erik spent over a decade digging through dusty volumes of antique books, sifting through musty archives, studying fragile artist letters, and poring over the handwritten journals of great painters like Cole, Durand, Church, Kensett, and Gifford. Koeppel tirelessly visited the homes of artists and the dingy archives of museums, seeking any clue he could find to lead him to answers. After studying extensively and keeping his own journal, Erik gradually gleaned tidbits of information and put them together like a great jigsaw puzzle to understand the steps of these artists’ techniques, and how they created paintings with such depth and feeling.
Exhaustive study lead Koeppel to understand the artists’ color palettes, which he had to translate to modern replacements for those colors no longer available or unsafe to use. He discovered their mediums, how they used a brush, and the exact process, step by step from creation to final glazing, for how they painted such beautiful trees, glowing light, and the feeling of air.

Coveted by Collectors

Koeppel’s shows in New York have been met with critical acclaim, and his paintings have been embraced by top collectors, and Erik was inducted recently as a living master by the coveted Art Renewal Center. Most collectors cannot afford Hudson River School originals, but Koeppel’s students are producing amazing works that are selling well. One of his students was recently written up in the New York Times — a very rare instance of praise for a representational painter in a paper whose critics have traditionally leaned toward the modern in their tastes.

A Gift Others Would Keep a Secret

Erik Koeppel spent ten years in his quest to learn and perfect these techniques. Though he could have kept what he learned to himself so that only he could produce such beautiful works and further his career, he wants to share this passion so others don’t have to dig so deeply to discover what he has found. He has decided to share these techniques with you.

Impact on Impressionist and Figurative Painters

You may love the Hudson River School paintings and want to learn how to create them, but there is typically a waiting list to enter the Hudson River Fellowship Erik Koeppel teaches. Or perhaps you prefer a looser, more impressionistic style and don’t aspire to paint like the Hudson River School. You’ll find that after viewing this in-depth instructional DVD and applying the techniques to your own style, you’ll experience a transformation in your work, taking you to a higher level. Students who have mastered these techniques have found they can apply them to all forms of painting, whether figurative or landscape.
Impressionist painters need to know, as much as any other artist, how to make paintings come alive, build drama, make stunning compositions, and create that feel others wish they could emulate. These techniques bring paintings to life, no matter what style you follow. Picasso was classically trained and found that training benefited him as he found his own forms of expression.

Techniques Revealed on DVD

For the first time, Erik Koeppel reveals these lost techniques, on a new two-disc DVD set. Over six hours of instruction explain the discoveries Koeppel has made over the last decade. This DVD includes:

Sketching and Composition on Location

Koeppel Sketch
Erik takes you outdoors and shows you how he determines his composition to create a beautiful painting. This is the foundation neglected by many painters. How do you create balance? How do you pull the subject through the picture? Where is your focal point? What creates distance? Erik shows his process for sketching out variations to determine what he will paint and discusses what makes great compositions.

Painting a Plein Air Study on Location

Erik does an in-depth outdoor demonstration, employing techniques used outdoors but not in the studio.

Painting a Tree Study at Sunset


Erik shows you how he paints trees and how he captures the essence of light during a sunset.

Creating Effects with Glazing

Find out how the Hudson River School painters created a sense of distance, light, shade, and glow through the use of a series of thin glazes.

Creating a Studio Painting

Erik takes the plein air study indoors and demonstrates how he creates a larger studio painting. A complete, in-depth demonstration, including elements added and subtracted from the plein air study.

The Palette of the Hudson River School Masters

Learn how the Hudson River School painters accomplished that distinctive rich, woodsy feel with a limited palette of colors, and learn how to use those colors.

A Visit to Erik’s New York Studio

A brief visit to Koeppel’s studio to see how he has it arranged to be most effective.

An Exhibit of Koeppel’s Best Paintings

You’ll see Erik Koeppel’s own Hudson River School paintings.

An In-depth Interview with the Artist

Art Publisher B. Eric Rhoads interviews Koeppel about the Hudson River School and offers his own thoughts on painting.

Over Six Hours of Learning the Hudson River School Painters’ Secrets on Two DVDs

Techniques of the Hudson River School Painters Erik Koeppel

Now available. Order your copy today.


GiftMakes a great holiday gift

PS: It's rare for a young painter to dedicate his life to pursuing the lost techniques of the artists who influenced him. If you could be accepted to study with Erik Koeppel, what would be the cost of travel, hotel, and the time spent with him? This DVD is an exceptional value and offers hours of education. By studying these techniques, you stand to become a stronger painter with improved composition abilities and techniques that could bring you decades of opportunity.  

Please order today. Overnight delivery available.

Call 561-655-8778 or visit

order here


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