The Spain-Inspired September Salon Winner

Artist William A. Suys, Jr has revealed his selections for the winners in the PleinAir Salon monthly art competition.

Congratulations to the winners of the September 2022 PleinAir Salon!

First place will receive a cash prize, plus all winners will be entered into the judging for the annual cash prizes, including the $15,000 grand prize for the best painting of the year, and they’ll see their painting on the cover of PleinAir Magazine. Could you be the next winner?

“The three paintings I’ve chosen begin to transcend the components of shape, color, and finish,” Bill said. Keep reading to see what he had to say about the top three winners and his advice for those who plan to enter their work in the future.

PleinAir Salon, September 2022 Winners Preview:

1st Place Overall: “Late Afternoon in Spain”

PleinAir Salon - Luis Azon, "Late Afternoon in Spain," 52 x 52 in., oil
Luis Azon, “Late Afternoon in Spain,” 52 x 52 in., oil

“This painting allows me to be quietly lost in a space while I hear activity all around,” Bill said of ‘Late Afternoon in Spain.’ “I’m able to separate from viewing a surface to sensing a feeling of atmosphere while mentally passing in and among groups of people engaged in their individual worlds as they become part of a unified environment.”

2nd Place Overall: “Warning Whoop”

PleinAir Salon - John Buxton, "Warning Whoop," 8 x 10 in., oil
John Buxton, “Warning Whoop,” 8 x 10 in., oil

On “Warning Whoop” > “There’s a richness and resonance that is more than just a skillful painting; it takes on historical value and depicts more than just a person…it brings a People to life!”

3rd Place Overall: “Low Tide Dunmore East”

PleinAir Salon - Steve Browning, "Low Tide Dunmore East," 16 x 24 in., acrylic
Steve Browning, “Low Tide Dunmore East,” 16 x 24 in., acrylic

On “Low Tide Dunmore East” > “Here’s a composition that dances; the landscape beautifully fills the space while the people both tell a story and share a sense of place.”

Best Plein Air Landscape: “Sanctuary”

Diane Frossard, "Sanctuary," 12 x 12 in., oil
Diane Frossard, “Sanctuary,” 12 x 12 in., oil

Best Plein Air Still Life: “Hazel’s Garden”

Haidee-Jo Summers, "Hazel's Garden," 10 x 12 in., oil
Haidee-Jo Summers, “Hazel’s Garden,” 10 x 12 in., oil

Best Plein Air Acrylic: “Skerries”

Steve Browning, "Skerries," 8 x 10 in., acrylic
Steve Browning, “Skerries,” 8 x 10 in., acrylic

Best Plein Air Oil: “Under the Parasols, Bagne de Vignole”

Karl Terry, "Under the Parasols, Bagne de Vignole," 8 x 10 in., oil
Karl Terry, “Under the Parasols, Bagne de Vignole,” 8 x 10 in., oil

Best Plein Air Pastel: “Tranquility”

Lamya Deeb, "Tranquility," 8 x 8 in., pastel
Lamya Deeb, “Tranquility,” 8 x 8 in., pastel

Best Plein Air Watercolor / Gouache: “Tobacco Bay at Mid Day”

William Rogers, "Tobacco Bay at Mid Day," 11 x 15 in., watercolor
William Rogers, “Tobacco Bay at Mid Day,” 11 x 15 in., watercolor

“For those who are considering entering your work and would like a broader explanation of my basis for judging,” Bill said, “I’ll leave you with an excerpt of a little essay I added to an early self-portrait, entitled ‘Self-Thoughtrait’. Though basic, I believe the concept holds true:

“When a viewer encounters ‘craft’, you may view and appreciate the surface and shape, but the relationship goes no further. When you meet with ‘ART’ you break beyond the surface and become personally involved. Outstanding work—whether subjective or abstract, painting or sculpture—takes on a life and spirit of its own. The artist may have developed the piece based upon something seen every day or upon something purely abstract and esoteric, but because of profound concept and execution, the finished piece goes beyond its components of shape, color, and finish. The most successful work has an ability to compel the viewer into its environment and to touch their thought or emotions in a unique and timeless way, and the best work will stay fresh and compelling forever.

“But…because ‘ART’ is a two-part connection, success varies with each pair of participants. One viewer might feel transported by a romantic Fragonard, and wonder why Rothko wasted a perfectly good canvas, while another is moved by ‘Guernica’, but scoffs at ‘Gassed’.”

View the rest of the PleinAir Salon winners soon at
Note: Judges are not provided with contestant names.

The next round of the PleinAir Salon has begun so hurry, as this competition ends on the last day of the month. Enter your best art in the PleinAir Salon here.

New This Year! We’re now offering a People’s Choice Award in each monthly cycle, with a prize of $100! (When you enter your painting, you’ll be able to “promote your artwork” with a special link.)

About the PleinAir Salon:

PleinAir Magazine presents the 12th annual PleinAir Salon Art Competition. In the spirit of the French Salon created by the Academie des Beaux-Arts in Paris, this annual online competition, with 11 monthly cycles, leading to the annual Salon Grand Prize winners, is designed to stimulate artistic growth through competition. The competition rewards artists with over $33,000 in cash prizes and exposure of their work, with the winning painting featured on the cover of PleinAir Magazine.

Winners in each monthly competition may receive recognition and exposure through PleinAir Magazine’s print magazine, e-newsletters, websites, and social media. Winners of each competition will also be entered into the annual competition. The 12th Annual Awards will be presented live at the Plein Air Convention & Expo in May 2023.

Please Note: We are the PleinAir Salon because we were created by PleinAir Magazine, not because we are a strictly plein air art competition. We know there are a lot of plein air painters who paint in the studio as well as in other styles, subject matters, and mediums. Our magazine features all the artworks of these great plein air painters, and so we too allow non-plein air pieces to win as long as they meet the criteria of the category in which they enter.

Related Article > 3 Secrets to Winning Art Competitions


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