The View From the Top

What does a top award winner anticipate as he begins a new plein air season? Maryland artist Tim Kelly reveals his expectations for 2018.

Painting Dreams: Artist Randall Graham on Cold Wax Medium

Randall Graham adds cold wax medium to his oil colors so he can brush, scrape, thicken, thin, and scumble layers of color and texture to create a dreamlike state. See how he works with the medium.

See the Relationship Between Colors

Richard F. Lack (1928-2009) taught students not to see a colors in isolation, but rather to see them in relation to those that surround them. What were his teaching methods?

Convention Preview: Find Spiritual & Personal Support

During her presentation at the Plein Air Convention & Expo, Tennessee artist Kathie Odom will reveal that she has been fortunate to find spiritual and personal support as her career skyrocketed to higher levels. What will she recommend to artists in Santa Fe?

Convention Preview: Find Important Information in the Shadows

“If people start looking for color in the shadow, they will see it,” says Mark Fehlman, one of the featured artists at the Plein Air Convention & Expo. “If they stop and look, compare things, and consider what they want to emphasize most, they will get a lot more out of their observations.” How does Fehlman actually accomplish that?

Why Our Cover Artist Spent Days on One Painting

Maine artist Stephan Giannini spent days creating two plein air paintings in an apple orchard, and one of them is on the cover of the March 2018 issue of PleinAir. Find out why he worked so long on location.

Check Out Other Artists’ Work

A wide variety of outdoor paintings are about to go on exhibit in art centers and galleries around the country. Here are a couple in which inspiring and informative work will be on display. Make sure you stay informed. 

The Risks & Rewards of Foreign Plein Air Painting

Over the past 25 years, David E. Dallison has taken his portable watercolor equipment to more than 35 countries, sometimes ignoring travel warnings and political unrest. He is now being a bit more cautious since he is traveling with his young family. Here’s how he works with watercolors in distant locations. 
Plein air oil painting by Brad Teare | PleinAir Today

The Power of an Attitude Adjustment

Utah artist Brad Teare stopped painting outdoors because he was putting too much pressure on himself and not enjoying the observational process necessary to discover nature’s subtleties. How did he adjust his attitude and reduce his stress levels?

Ranger’s Classic Moment

The American artist Henry Ward Ranger (1858-1916) studied in Europe, and when he returned to the United States in 1888, he began to exhibit with members of the National Academy of Design (NAD), the American Watercolor Society, and the Society of American Artists.

My Favorite Place to Paint: Poppy and Point Prim

Lighthouses are such wonderful subjects, aren’t they? They project into the sky with brilliant designs from sandy and rocky shores and are beacons of hope for weary sailors. For accomplished outdoor painter Poppy Balser, there will always be a special place in her heart for Point Prim. Discover why here.

Artist as Collector: James Coe and the Mean Greens

New York State painter James Coe collects paintings that demonstrate good ways of tackling vexing painting problems — like presenting a variety of greens in a landscape.

Anatomy of an Award Winner: Mary Monk, at Shadows-on-the-Teche

No sun? No problem for Mary Monk. Overcast days at the Shadows-on-the-Teche Plein Air Competition did not deter the Louisiana oil painter.

Artist as Collector: Poppy Balser and ‘One Thing’

Nova Scotia artist Poppy Balser is partial to watercolor—her chosen medium—but she is also partial to demos she's seen painted in person. There's one other trait that attracts her to a piece she is considering for her collection.

Artist as Collector: Thomas Dunlay and Staying on Track

A few pieces in Boston painter Thomas Dunlay’s collection remind him to stay the course.

Spotlight on PACE Faculty: Michelle Jung and the Bicoastal

Oil painter Michelle Jung spends half the year in Santa Cruz, California, and the other half in Wellesley, Massachusetts. The contrast between the two locales has sharpened her skills of observation and has given her important insight that she can share with attendees of the Plein Air Convention & Expo (PACE), where she is on the faculty.

Artist as Collector: Mary Garrish and the Artist’s Choice

Florida painter Mary Garrish calls collecting art “a gut response” to what moves her. But she has another way to explain her choices, one that makes total sense.

My Favorite Place to Paint: John Caggiano, and Paradise Gained

John Caggiano painted a picture of a beach in the Venice, Florida area titled “A Touch of Paradise.” But it was the artist who gave it that magic touch, not nature.

Spotlight on PACE Faculty: Jill Stefani Wagner and Psychedelic Pink

Jill Stefani Wagner will tell you how the students teach the teachers and the teachers explore with the students in the drama-free, prima donna-averse atmosphere of the Plein Air Convention & Expo (PACE). It’s one of the reasons she loves being on the faculty there.

Anatomy of an Award Winner: Nancy Tankersley at the Lighthouse ArtCenter Event

When Nancy Tankersley saw this scene, she felt like it captured the feel of Florida. The judge at the Lighthouse ArtCenter Plein Air Festival agreed.

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