Sunday, April 1, 2012

First Spring Outing

The snow melted quickly this spring, and wildflowers were out weeks early. Cheryl and Michelle were able to take advantage of the opportunity to visit Nerstrand-Big Woods State Park for a painting outing. The weather had been forecast to be 70 degrees, but they woke up to heavy overcast and temperatures in the 40's. It wasn't going to be swimsuit weather! Plein air painters in Minnesota need to be prepared for a variety of weather on any day.

In the park, the forest floor was carpeted with many blooming wildflowers, including hepatica, bloodroot, and Dutchman's breeches. Clumps of green leaves promised more to come, with buds showing on some of the trillium and trout lily. The heavy overcast obliterated all shadows and reduced the landscape to shades of gray, with the flowers keeping themselves closed. It was great to be outside, but the painting opportunities were limited. Cheryl and Michelle set up their easels near a clump of bloodroot and worked on their paintings. It was a day to practice working in narrow value ranges and with limited color, with no paintings to show at the end of the day.

Sometimes a day painting outside, practicing, is its own reward, so that the next painting will be that much better.

Monday, March 12, 2012

We laugh at Winter!

Snow pants - check
Long underwear - check
Mukluks - check
Hats/mittens/hand warmers - check
Swimsuit - check!

Plein air painting in the winter has its own set of joys and challenges. Michelle and Cheryl went painting 30 miles up the Gunflint Trail the first week of March, when it is still winter in northern Minnesota. Fresh snow blanketed the area and presented a smorgasbord of scenes to paint. The painters chose to set up by a small river which had started to open. While they painted, it got warmer and warmer. Off with the with the with the snow pants. Still too warm!

We laugh at winter,now you can laugh at us!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Plein Air Painting in Every Season

New paintings and some familiar will be exhibited in Grand Marais at the Johnson Heritage Post Art Gallery. This beautiful log building is the perfect backdrop for scenes painted outdoors, "en plein air", in all seasons. The Grand Marais area offers plenty to do, and they have snow! Come up and enjoy the show. We look forward to seeing you!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

World Wide Paintout

International Plein Air Painters Worldwide sponsored a worldwide paint out September 9-11, 2011. Painters from all over the world took part! PALS was pleased to be able to participate. Cheryl and Michelle painted Friday evening, enjoying unseasonably warm temperatures and meeting some of the local students out in the neighborhood for the evening. Lisa arranged for the group to paint the following day at a small pond in a busy shopping area. Local shoppers had a chance to see plein air artists at work! Thank you, Jay for taking the photos!

Grand Marais Plein Air Competition 2011

It was another fine evening for PALS painters Michelle Wegler, Lisa Stauffer and Cheryl LeClair Sommer at the Artists' Reception for the exhibit of paintings created during the plein air event. 44 artists submitted paintings for the show. The event was so well attended, the food was gone in 20 minutes! The crowd was enthusiastic and seemed to really enjoy seeing the art and meeting the artists.

Michelle was awarded First Place in the Night Paint category. The new owner of the painting will be able to add that to her memories of the purchase of this painting. She and her husband are also now the proud owners of not only that painting, but of Cheryl's also. Michelle and Cheryl painted together for the night paint, and the two paintings make a beautiful set.

Lisa was awarded People's Choice for her painting.

Thank you to all who attended and made the evening so enjoyable.

Monday, August 22, 2011

PALS go to the Grand Marais Plein Air Painting Competition

Come to beautiful Grand Marais and
enjoy painters while they paint outside during the Grand Marais Plein Air Painting Competition. This will be the third year for PALS, and one or more of us has won awards at the event each year. Who will it be this year?

Saturday, March 19, 2011

One View, Three Visions Reception

Not knowing a soul in Wausau, it was with some anxiety that we set off for the opening reception for our most recent exhibit of One View, Three Visions at the Center for Visual Arts. It turned out to be a pleasant surprise for us! We were barely in the door of the beautiful gallery taking off our jackets and the people started coming in. All evening long we were pleased to enjoy the company of dozens of viewers. And they enjoyed the paintings! Live music, food and beverages added to the festivities.

The excitement about the paintings was evident in talking with the viewers at the reception. One of the most interesting aspects of the paintings was the fact the they are in groups of three, one by each of the PALS painters, and that we each paint the same scene at the same time. Outside. In all weather. Sometimes it is obvious that the scene was the same one in each painting, but other times the unique view of the artist comes through.

The exhibit is open for viewing through April 24, 2011. Enjoy fresh new paintings to bring new life to the new spring season.