A Blog about Finding Inspiration

"We have a wonderful world to be inspired by and each new day is like an adventure into the unknown, where things that require a second glance can be captured in time on a canvas for anyone to enjoy forever." (Louise Corke)

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Plein Air SC style Nov '09

My most recent adventure was in Charleston.  The Charleston Fine Arts Council Designated Nov 5-7th as Fine Arts weekend, and the entire city got in the act with art walks, gala openings in the city's many museums, and auctions to benefit various art causes. I haven't met a single plein air painter since I moved here, so I was very excited to read that the council was sponsoring a PLEIN AIR event in Washington Park.  Boy was I in for a surprise!  Plein Air painting as I know it usually means the artist painting(1) a small landscape or architectural scene(2) that is being looked at on location (3) in a somewhat impressionistic manner (4) to capture a the local color of what is seen. (5) They are almost always small because (6) one is trying to capture the image before the light changes.
In Charleston,  Plein air seems to mean anything that you paint in plain air out of doors. 
  There were people realistically painting remote landscapes from photographs, and creating watercolor seascapes from photographs. 
Some of the artists set up still lives complete with settings to direct the light 
 or brought a model and posed her on a bench.   

The participating artists had been invited to donate work towards an auction which raised money for the Charleston high school district art program. 

Much of what was donated were graphics, abstracts, and or decorative art pieces. 
  There were a couple of artists who were trying to paint the local scenery,  
  but I didn't envy them trying to see their subject matter through the crowds.   
 The winning piece of art from the exhibit was what appeared to be a colored photograph of a pelican.  (Even if I am mistaken and it was a incredibly realistic hand rendered pelican... I don't know how it could be called plein air). Oh well, plein air or not, the effort and money went to a good cause, so no complaints.

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