Why This Works: Mountains as Sky Family

In this series, plein air painter and instructor Jeanne Mackenzie takes a look at new paintings by contemporary artists and points out why they succeed as painted images. This week, Lena Rivo’s “Arrabida Natural Park."

Carl Bretzke’s Top 10 Reasons for Attending the Plein Air Convention

Don’t take it from us — hear it from one of plein air painting’s stars. The Plein Air Convention & Expo (PACE) is the place to be in April.

Why This Works: Low Key Allows Orange to Pop

In this series, plein air painter and instructor Jeanne Mackenzie takes a look at new paintings by contemporary artists and points out why they succeed as painted images. This week, Walter Bartman’s “The Golden Hour.”

Why This Works: Format, Key, and Aerial Perspective

In this series, plein air painter and instructor Jeanne Mackenzie takes a look at new paintings by contemporary artists and points out why they succeed as painted images. This week, Susan Paterson’s “PEI Skies.”

My Favorite Place to Paint: Julie Jilek and the Mysteries of High Cliff

From ancient burial mounds to one of the most striking geological features of the United States, Julie Jilek’s favorite place to paint has much to intrigue the painter. But Jilek also loves it because of her personal history.

Why This Works: The Sailboat’s Story

In this series, plein air painter and instructor Jeanne Mackenzie takes a look at new paintings by contemporary artists and points out why they succeed as painted images. This week, “Long Island Inlet,” by Rosanne Kaloustian.

Why This Works: Figures as Supporting Players

In this series, plein air painter and instructor Jeanne Mackenzie takes a look at new paintings by contemporary artists and points out why they succeed as painted images. This week, “Horizon,” by Paul George.

Why This Works: Using Both Symmetry and Asymmetry

In this series, plein air painter and instructor Jeanne Mackenzie takes a look at new paintings by contemporary artists and points out why they succeed as painted images. This week, “Big River Calling,” by Tom McGregor.

Accepting the Challenge of Painting Sky

Tomas Honz has an impressive body of work focusing on various sky conditions. It was not done without a fair amount of adversity.

How the Desert Helped Carlton Paint Snow

Minnesota artist Philip Alexander Carlton was not impressed with painting winter in the Midwest until he realized he could apply lessons learned on his lengthy road trip.

Why This Works: A Tale of Two Paintings

In this series, plein air painter and instructor Jeanne Mackenzie takes a look at new paintings by contemporary artists and points out why they succeed as painted images. This week, two pieces from one day by Richard Maud.

Unsticking the Stuck Student

Artist and art industry veteran Terry Stanley has some advice for art instructors who encounter students with a block stopping their progress.

Why This Works: Supporting the Star Player

In this series, plein air painter and instructor Jeanne Mackenzie takes a look at new paintings by contemporary artists and points out why they succeed as painted images. This week, Kurt Jacobson’s “DeLong Lake, Alaska.”

Putting Design Over Subject

North Carolina painter Jean Cauthen says she seeks out “the places between or in back of places,” by which she means finding a strong design rather than painting a portrait.

What It Takes to Paint Snow in Northern Ontario

Christy A. Smith loves winter, and it’s a good thing, because she lives in Sudbury, Ontario in Canada, where the average low temperature in January is below zero. She especially likes painting snow, and some of her snow paintings are now on view in a special exhibition.

Why This Works: Muted Foreground Sends Viewer to Mid-Ground

In this series, plein air painter and instructor Jeanne Mackenzie takes a look at new paintings by contemporary artists and points out why they succeed as painted images. This week, Kayti Didriksen’s “Fall Evidence, Catskills.”

People . . . Who Paint People

Kathryn A. McMahon is not one of those plein air painters who are bothered by passersby. She puts them into her paintings, and chats with them. How?

Why This Works: Masterful Use of Color

In this series, plein air painter and instructor Jeanne Mackenzie takes a look at new paintings by contemporary artists and points out why they succeed as painted images. This week, Jude Tolar’s “Provencal Golden Hour.”

Seeing the Unconventional, on Location

It took an unconventional painting done from a photograph taken at an extreme vantage point to set David Boyd, Jr. on his current path as a plein air pain

How to Avoid Greens in Summer

Actually, Lynn M. Rix tried to avoid greens by painting from a boat ... and she ended up painting a lot of green. How so?

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