Friday, October 29, 2010

Sedona Plein Air Festival 2010

"Doe Mesa Bluff" 9x12, oil

Quick Draw Sale

Many of you have wondered why I've been silent since Texas. Well, immediately after teaching my workshop there, I jumped into the 2010 Sedona Plein Air Festival. I arrived in Sedona Friday night and had to start painting Saturday morning. It's been a busy week!

But now, we are at the tail end of the Festival. What's left is tonight's Gala event and tomorrow's public sale. Here are the details copied directly from the web site,

Art Lover's Gala
Friday, Oct 29, 5 pm to 7 pm (Sedona Arts Center)
15 Art Barn Road in Uptown
The Gala event of our Plein Air Festival. Preview the Best of the Fest and be there to choose from award-winners presented during the evening. Savor Arizona Stronghold Dala and Tazi wines and Perfection Chef Dan Martin's exquisite Hors doeurves while making your selections. Tickets, $100.

One Day Only! Plein Air Public Sale
Saturday, Oct 30, 10 am to 5 pm (Sedona Arts Center)
15 Art Barn Road in Uptown
The award-winning artists will be on hand to talk to you about their paintings, giving you insights into each piece and to help you select the painting that is perfect for your personal collection. Artists will be demonstrating on a rotating basis throughout the day. Open to the public - no admission charge.

If you're in town or even within hailing distance, I hope you'll stop in and visit. On Saturday, I'll be demonstrating in pastel outside the Arts Center. Although I painted in oil for the Festival, I thought it'd be neat to do some interpretations of the landscape around the Arts Center in my second medium.

Now, to bring you up to speed on the story.

The Festival began last Saturday with the paintout on Main Street. I set up near the Best Western where I had a great view of Camelhead and Snoopy Rock. When we were all finished, we framed our work and then set the paintings up on our easels in front of the Arts Center for a public sale. On Sunday, I painted a nice view of Bell Rock and Courthouse Butte, and then later went over to one of my favorite secret spots to paint Cathedral Rock. That evening, we had the opening reception for the Artist's Showcase, in which artists were invited to hang pre-event work. Monday, I headed up to the West Fork (also known as "Call O' the Canyon") to paint with pastelist Christine Debrosky. We ran into some serious drizzle that forced us to seek shelter down in Slide Rock State Park. The manager of the Slide Rock Market graciously let us paint on his porch and warmed us up with coffee.

By Tuesday morning, the rain had departed, and I hiked up Doe Mesa to paint with Cody Delong, Joshua Been, Bill Cramer, Tracey Frugoli and Scott Lloyd Anderson. Doe Mesa has a vast top, so there was plenty of room for us to paint in without tripping over tripods. After lunch, I went down to Grasshopper Point and hiked Allen's Bend Trail to a favorite waterfall. That evening, I listened to Stuart Shils lecture on perception and painting. (I'd love to paint like him, but doubt I could get away with it.) Wednesday was Jerome Day. Jerome was a ghost town, a remnant of its mining heyday, until it was recently resurrected. It is now filled with artists. I did a sweet little scene of Verde Avenue with the old storefronts. In the afternoon, I hurried home to tweak and frame, so I could get back to the Arts Center that night for a talk by Shils. He is the Festival's Keynote Speaker, and he gave a retrospective of his work.

Thursday morning we had the Quick Draw event at the Los Abrigados resort, near the Tlaquepaque shopping plaza. Some of us painted the Mexican-style buildings of Tlaquepaque, while others, me included, went down to the creek to paint sycamores and water. At the end, we set up our easels with the finished paintings, just as we did on Saturday, for a public sale. In the afternoon, we turned in the work we'd done during the week so the Arts Center staff could hang it for tonight's Gala event. Everyone I spoke with yesterday seemed pretty beat, but also up-beat. We did some really good work this week, and we're looking forward to tonight's Gala and the Saturday sale.

I'll post again soon, but for the time being, I offer a selection of photos from the week.

My painting from the Quick Draw

Painting near Grasshopper Point

Bill Cramer on Doe Mesa

Joshua Been on Doe Mesa

Cody Delong on Doe Mesa

Me, Painting at Slide Rock

Main Street Painting Event and Sale


Susan Renee Lammers said...

Great blog post Michael! Sounds like you are having quite and adventure. Your painting turned out great! Pretty area. Thanks for posting photos too.

Michael Chesley Johnson, Artist / Writer said...

Thank you, Renee!

Bill Cramer said...

Nice pics, Michael. Fun day up there on Doe Mesa (even if I did feel lousy!) Wish we had painted more together. More opportunities for that over the coming months while you're in the area. Bill

Michael Chesley Johnson, Artist / Writer said...

Indeed, Bill! Anytime you want to come out to Sedona to paint, just let me know. You've got a place to stay.