Here are two paintings of some mangroves, the first, "Peaceful Morning Blues" 11" x 14", is a small piece that was painted quickly on location (en plein air) and the second "Tranquillity Grove" 24" x 36" was painted from photographs in the studio.
When I work 'en plein air' (painting a scene on location) I generally......
Use loose brush strokes
Usually do smaller paintings
Plan to complete the painting on one short sitting with maybe a few finishing touches back at the studio
When I paint from a photo I have many more options such as.......
Creating a large painting
Painting in as much detail as I like
Taking the time to plan the piece, make creative changes to the actual scene, altering the composition, altering the colors scheme etc.
Taking as much time as I need
Niether method is better. They are just different and different is wonderful and an essential componant of art.