Thoughts About the Art Life
"Lighting the River", oil, 11"x14", Amy Evans. Painted at Wyoming Plein Air 2009
Why do I participate in "paint outs"? I sometimes ask myself that same question. They are expensive for the artist. You have to usually stay in a motel, pay for your meals, stay long enough to factor in weather, and produce at least three paintings for the exhibition, which must be framed and ready to show.
I don't participate in as many as in the past because of all the above reasons. There are also so many of them now because they make money for the galleries as well as the sponsoring event. I am more selective and now enjoy painting in varied locations because of new material to paint.
I participate in plein air paint outs for several reasons. I enjoy the challenges and they keep my work fresh. I also enjoy the interaction between artist and observer. What we do is magic to them and it always renews my spirit to be appreciated directly by the non-artist. I enjoy the feedback.
I also enjoy the camaraderie of other artists. What we do is often lonely and it is always great to meet other artists at these events. I always learn something new.
I also benefit from the immersion. I can totally concentrate on painting and am away from everyday life stuff. It is a working vacation from bills, etc.
Sales and recognition are the icing on the cake...