Sunday, October 19, 2014

Sedona Plein Air Festival: Day 1

Sunset at the Sedona Arts Center
It sure was good to see all my plein air painting buddies at the orientation for the Sedona Plein Air Festival.  Although 10 a.m. was the official start time for hanging the paintings that we'd brought with us, many of us were there at 9:30 or even earlier.  It was hard to talk over the echoing explosion of hammers as artists pounded nails into the wall.  Here are the six paintings I brought, all of which are now on exhibit and available for sale at the Sedona Arts Center:

Paintings are hung from my eye-level and below;
I'll be filling the rest of the space as the week goes by.

After getting our canvases stamped, we met for a brief orientation presented by Vince Fazio and Kelli Klymenko.

They'd put together a sweet little video of what our week was going to be like and where we would be painting.  You can see the video here:

Lunch followed, and then we went out to pick our painting spots for the "Paintout on Main Street" event.  I was hoping to do something a little "edgier" for me - that is, something that didn't involve  red rocks - but I found it a little hard to get started this first day.  I wondered how the newbies were doing with Main Street.  If you've never painted in Sedona before, it is unsettling to say the least to not only have to paint unfamiliar subjects but also to be surrounded by tourists and traffic.

The scene immediately behind where I set up to paint

We painted from 1:30 until 3:30, at which time paintings had to be set up on easels in front of the art center for judging.  Carl Judson of Guerrilla Painter and Scott Gellatly selected one painting each for an award.  Carl chose a piece by Charlie Hunter, and Scott, a piece by Gretchen Lopez.  Both judges were looking for something that evoked a sense of Sedona but that also included the unexpected and perhaps a different approach to painting.  Here's my piece, in situ, and you can see I  did end up painting red rocks after all:

Afterward, the galleries opened from 5 to 7 for the opening reception.  The hors d'ouevres were really good, and I had a chance to talk to several of the other artists.  If you'd like to come to the Festival, you can see a full schedule of events here:

Now it is Sunday morning, and as I write, it is still dark, and rain is falling and thunder cracking.  I am hoping to get out early to paint, but I may have to wait awhile.

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