Saturday, October 12, 2013

Millheim, Pennsylvania, Plein Air Painting Workshop Report

As part of our annual migration to Arizona, I teach plein air painting workshops along the way.  This fall, I'm teaching in Pennsylvania, Maryland, Georgia and Florida.  (Interested in having me teach a workshop for your group?  Let's talk.)  I just finished up a wonderful three-day workshop in the historic Penns Valley area of Pennsylvania.

Each morning, we met in Millheim at the Green Drake Gallery, which sponsored the workshop, to talk about plein air basics.  (Landscape Artists International artist and founder Karl Leitzel coordinated.)  Armed with all the information students needed to get started, we headed out to the day's chosen location.  Spots included a local park with a pastoral view of barns  and silos; an abandoned railroad trestle spanning Elk Creek that offered us good fall color; and Chickory Lane Farm, a project designed to rejuvenate old farmland through intelligent stewardship of the land, where we enjoyed rolling hills dotted with purple asters and more fall foliage.

We hit a good stretch of fine fall weather for the workshop; rain held off until the very end of the last day, when we retreated to the studio for a wrap-up and final critiques.  Now, as I write this morning in our little cabin in the woods, the rain pelts down outside - and inside as well, since the upstairs bedroom has developed a few leaks.  We take this as a sign that's it's time to move on to our next destination!

The next plein air painting workshop, sponsored by the Towson Arts Collective and the Mid-Atlantic Plein Air Painters Association, is in Towson, Maryland.  We had planned to paint at a national historic site, but as it is part of the National Park Service, the ongoing government shutdown is affecting us, too - the site is closed to us, forcing the organizer to seek an alternate venue.   (Thank you for your hard work, Diane!)  I wonder how many other plein air painters have been affected by the shutdown?

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