Derek Davis appeared in the TV episode produced by Lakeland Public Television.

Public television continues to shine the spotlight on plein air painting. Last week, Lakeland Public Television, a partnership of two TV stations in Minnesota, interviewed artists participating in an event sponsored by the Jaques Art Center in Aitkin, Minnesota, for a special that serves as an excellent introduction to outdoor painting.

Watercolorist Duane Barnhart explained to viewers his approach to painting a church

Oil painter Derek Davis and watercolorist Duane Barnhart explained to viewers how they tackle a plein air piece in the first installment of the Common Ground episode, which highlights the Jaques Art Center event. It was recently uploaded to YouTube, and Davis commented on the experience. 

The public television episode served as a good introduction to plein air painting, ably presenting the process of the painters featured.

“Small towns in middle America continue to discover the ‘plein air movement’ and the new visions of the commonplace in our backyards,” says Davis. “The Jaques Art Center is one of those places that has been hosting a plein air event for many years. With rivers, lakes, quaint farms, and small-town charm, Aitkin offers abundant subject matter. Painting in a small town provides the painters and those who might not otherwise see artists painting with a chance to rub shoulders, introducing the general public to plein air painting through direct contact. There are fresh insights to be gained by the locals as they see their community through different eyes. This was my first time painting in Aitkin, and I was taken by the townspeople, who were both polite and inquisitive. All of the artists finished the event exhausted, mosquito-bitten, happy, and vowing to return the following year.”


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