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Etiquette for Plein Air Painting Groups

How many painters can you find? Overcrowding at National Parks? Aren't some of them, well, vast? Lately, there's been a lot of buzz about this topic. Zion National Park recently made it into the headlines as considering the idea of requiring reservations for entry into the park. Show More Summary

Plein Air Painting Products: PanelPak and PalettePak

Like most professional plein air painters, over the years I've gathered a variety of wet panel carriers for oil painting. I like each of them for different reasons. PanelPak is one I use most often these days because it fits in my backpack with all my painting gear. Show More Summary

Art and film: “Detroit” and Faulkner’s truth

Contributed by Jonathan Stevenson / William Faulkner famously said, “The past is never dead. It’s not even past.” That is a key truth about one of his central concerns – race in America. Kathryn Bigelow, in her harrowingly compelling film Detroit, uses that truth as a kind of nightstick with which to beat the audience … read more... Show More Summary

Plein Air Painters of the Bay of Fundy - Paintout Report

"Antediluvian" 9x12 oil by Michael Chesley JohnsonAvailable - click for detailsPainted at Quoddy Head State Park, Lubec, Maine Location Shot for "Antediluvian" Each year, Plein Air Painters of the Bay of Fundy has its annual paintout. Show More Summary

Quick study

Articles this week concern talented female artists over 60, playwrights tackling the heartbreaking heroin epidemic, the link between smart phones and teenage depression, Donald Trump’s stupid drawing, art dealers’ advice on how to close your gallery, the Seattle Art Fair (!), and, alas, a new Dana Schutz controversy. Show More Summary

What Makes You Happy?

"What Makes Me Happy" - 9x12 pastel - AvailableThis is only a sketch, but painting it made me happy.I really got into the drawing of the rocks. The other day, I went for a walk in the woods. Usually, I speed along to get my heart rate up—fast enough to scare every bird, squirrel and Sasquatch. Show More Summary

Philadelphia conversation: Lovitz, Hoffman, Granwell at Fleisher/Ollman

Contributed by Becky Huff Hunter / Alchemy, Typology, Entropy at Fleisher/Ollman, Philadelphia, features painting and sculpture by three talented artists who live and work locally: Adam Lovitz, Peter Allen Hoffman, and Alexis Granwell. Show More Summary

Post-Opening: Acadia Invitational III at Argosy Gallery, Bar Harbor, Maine

Posing beside my "Acadian Summer" (top) 12x24 oil Trina and I just returned from an enjoyable weekend down in Bar Harbor, Maine. As you may recall, this was the weekend for the opening of the Third Acadia Invitational exhibition, which was organized by Argosy Gallery. Show More Summary

Images: Elizabeth Gilfilen

After a period exploring the notion of restraint–paring down her palette and limiting the number of marks–Beth Gilfilen has returned to epic struggle. In her pulsating new large-scale canvases, Gilflen pits clashing colors against one another in snaking layers and agitated line, filling once pristine areas with murky, mark-cancelling clots of paint. Show More Summary

Selections: Trestle’s big show of small works

Contributed by Sharon Butler / This year Trestle Gallery’s summer group show, “Small Work,” was curated by Bill Carroll, a painter and the director at the Elizabeth Foundation for the Arts Studio Program. Selecting work for this kind of show, defined not by theme but simply by size, is always difficult. Show More Summary

Recognition for artists: Sondheim Artscape Prize in Baltimore

Baltimore’s most prestigious art prize is the Janet & Walter Sondheim Artscape Prize, a sizable fellowship awarded to artists who live or work in the Baltimore region. Unlike the DeCordova Museum of Art’s Rappaport Prize, which was recently...Show More Summary

Film: A strategic retreat’s smirk of defiance in DUNKIRK

Contributed by Jonathan Stevenson /In his paradoxically granular war epic Dunkirk, Christopher Nolan assumes viewers know that the British Army’s 1940 strategic retreat from the eponymous French coastal town was crucial to Allied victory...Show More Summary

Acadia Invitational III at Argosy Gallery in Bar Harbor

"Acadian Summer"12x24 oil by Michael Chesley JohnsonAvailable at Argosy Gallery as part of the Acadia Invitational Exhibition This weekend marks the opening of the Acadia Invitational III exhibition for Argosy Gallery in Bar Harbor, Maine. Show More Summary

Monhegan Meditations

Approaching Monhegan Island The tiny island of Monhegan, scarcely a mile across, gets a lot of attention from painters. Its fame is due to a hundred years of celebrity painters enjoying its charms. Rockwell Kent, Edward Hopper, Andrew...Show More Summary

Adirondack idyll: Jay Invitational of Clay, Rockwell Kent, Ausable Chasm & more

Contributed by Sharon Butler and Jonathan Stevenson / Some artists go upstate to get away from the art world in the summer, and others gather an art world around them wherever they go. We went up to the Adirondacks recently to visitShow More Summary

Plein Air Workshop Report: Rockland, Maine

Port Clyde Puffin(no, it's not real) I just finished up a fantastic week in Rockland, Maine, teaching a plein air painting workshop for Coastal Maine Art Workshops. Usually in the summer, I don't venture far from my quiet home on Campobello Island. Show More Summary

Fiction: Light [Rand Richards Cooper]

FOR THIS EDITION of the summer fiction column, my old friend Rand Richards Cooper has contributed “Light,” a poignant story  published in Big as Life, his 1996 collection of short fiction. In “Light” Cooper imagines reconnecting with our old high school art teacher. Show More Summary

Invitation: “Painting Not Painting” in Baltimore

Contributed by Sharon Butler / Please join us this coming Friday, July 21, 7 to 10 pm, for the opening reception of “Painting Not Painting,” an exhibition at ‘sindikit, the project space run by Tim Doud and Zoë Charlton in Baltimore....Show More Summary

Gretchen Frances Bennett’s tenderness

Gretchen Frances Bennett: “Objects that appear in my drawings are pieced together place holders, in an ongoing search for the things that stay. They speak to a fleeting image caught peripherally, that can hold basic significant information. Show More Summary

Heading to Rockland and then Castine - Painting the Maine Coast!

Morning Glare4x12 oil by Michael Chesley Johnson$175 unframed - Available I'm about to head down to Rockland, Maine, to teach a workshop for Coastal Maine Art Workshops. Although I've visited Rockland many times, I've never painted there, so I'm excited to paint this part of the Maine coast. Show More Summary

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