T. Allen Lawson’s Top Salon Choices

Award-winning artist T. Allen Lawson has revealed his selections for the winners in the March 2024 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?

“For painters and artists thinking of entering a competition or a public exhibition, my advice would be to paint what interests you,” Lawson advises. “Pay no attention to what you may think the judges or audiences would like to see. If you are true to yourself and take the time to learn, really study and learn your craft, then ask yourself why you are drawn to a particular subject matter and then execute your painting to the best of your ability, your painting will be an honest interpretation.”

PleinAir Salon Winners Preview:

1st Place Overall: “Untitled in Gray”

PleinAir Salon - Ann Rudd, “Untitled in Gray,” Oil, 7x5 in.
Ann Rudd, “Untitled in Gray,” Oil, 7×5 in.

On “Untitled in Gray” by Ann Rudd: “I awarded this small figurative painting first place because of its emotional quality. I believe it was beautifully composed and wonderfully painted. It is well drawn yet leaves much to be interpreted. Of all the paintings in this competition this piece really resonated with me.”

2nd Place Overall: “Desert Dainty”

PleinAir Salon - Jonathan Shirey, “Desert Dainty,” Watercolor, 24x18 in.
Jonathan Shirey, “Desert Dainty,” Watercolor, 24×18 in.

On “Desert Dainty” by Jonathan Shirey: “One important difference, in my opinion, between an artist and a painter is that an artist will take a subject, often overlooked, and through their interpretation will present the subject matter in a new way. A painter tends to render things as they are, without a great deal of thought or overall organization. This painting is well composed and with its tight perspective, it forces the viewer to look at the cactus in a new way, causing it to have a strong impact. That is why I awarded it second place.”

3rd Place Overall: “Sunset at Kuerners”

PleinAir Salon - Deborah Chabrian, “Sunset at Kuerners,” Watercolor, 11x14 in.
Deborah Chabrian, “Sunset at Kuerners,” Watercolor, 11×14 in.

On “Sunset at Kuerners” by Deborah Chabrian: “I awarded this watercolor the third place award for the command the artist has of their medium. It is solidly composed, and has an appealing sense of place.”

Best Plein Air Landscape: “North Side of the Tracks, Morning”

Christine Code (Canada), “North Side of the Tracks, Morning,” Oil, 8x10 in.
Christine Code (Canada), “North Side of the Tracks, Morning,” Oil, 8×10 in.

Best Plein Air Acrylic: “Duomo Plaza”

Bernard Dellario, “Duomo Plaza,” Acrylic, 8x8 in.
Bernard Dellario, “Duomo Plaza,” Acrylic, 8×8 in.

Best Plein Air Oil: “Acadia Shadows”

Eileen Eder, “Acadia Shadows,” Oil, 10x20 in.
Eileen Eder, “Acadia Shadows,” Oil, 10×20 in.

Best Plein Air Pastel: “Gallatin Valley Quilt”

Aaron Schuerr, “Gallatin Valley Quilt,” Pastel, 14x18 in.
Aaron Schuerr, “Gallatin Valley Quilt,” Pastel, 14×18 in.

Best Plein Air Watercolor / Gouache: “Vista to Bird Island”

Carolyn Lord, “Vista to Bird Island,” Watercolor, 11x15 in.
Carolyn Lord, “Vista to Bird Island,” Watercolor, 11×15 in.

Enter the PleinAir Salon Today

The next round of the PleinAir Salon has begun so hurry, as this competition ends on the last day of the month. See the rest of this month’s winners and enter your best art in the PleinAir Salon here.

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