Those who’ve followed my painting demonstrations on this website, or attended one of my outdoor painting workshops have seen me using the Anderson Portable Swivel Easel from time to time. I am questioned about this wonderful easel all the time because of its unique characteristics. While designed for all mediums, I have found it to be one of the best options out there for watercolorists, when teamed with the Eldajon watercolor Palettes. So follow along while I demonstrate why I like it:.
1. Here I am at work in Zion National Park during the 2010 “In the Footsteps of Thomas Moran” plein air quick draw competition. My Anderson portable swivel easel won my painting the high bid at auction. Well, it helped anyway.
This is the set up I use most often. I use a comfortable folding chair and position the easel at table height, turning it sideways towards me as a table. The handy swivel feature allows me to turn my painting towards me at any angle and tip it to any position from flat to vertical without changing the position of the table. I don’t know of other easels which allow this.
In front of me are my two Eldajon Palettes, an accordian water jar, towel and brushes, which all store conveniently in the center section. It all folds neatly together for carrying.
2. Rather than have the painting locked to the easel, the Anderson Easel allows you to swivel and position the painting at any level. With ordinary French easels you must lift and re-position the entire easel just to change the position. It’s a simple and obvious solution and it works!
3. During the filming of a documentary in Zion National Park, I used the Anderson Easel in the upright position. My only compaint is that I’d like it to raise a little higher since I am 6′ 1″ tall. I believe the newer models have an extension arm.
4. Painting from the deck of my cabin at East Zion National Park. Used in the standing position I wish the easel were a little taller. Notice the hook for hanging bucket of water or solvent. The set-up is so fast with the quick- lock aluminum legs, I can be up and painting while my friends are still wrestling with the heavy wooden legs and knobs on their french easels.