So, you are trying to talk yourself into or perhaps out of applying to Plein Air Easton. Maybe you are a professional artist and considering Plein Air competitions for the first time. Perhaps you are an artist who has competed on the west coast and feels ready for something new; maybe you have applied for years and not yet gotten the email saying that it is your year to travel to the Eastern Shore and compete. The Plein Air Easton Staff got together and came up with a list of the top ten reasons why you should apply to Plein Air Easton. We hope that they convince you that this is your year!
Strong Sales – Meaning it is likely worth the trip – We don’t just rest on our laurels, we work hard to stir up new collector interest in every festival year. One of our newest events in 2016, Small Painting Sunday, moved a whopping 87 paintings within hours and saw sales that were 4 times what they’ve have been on that same day in previous years! In total, last year's festival sold 334 paintings with final sales of over $384,000. Oh, and we tend to mail out commission checks about a week after the festival’s concluded.
We are the Nation's Largest and Most Prestigious Juried Competition - Because this is a juried competition it presents one of the foremost opportunities to break into the major leagues of the plein air painting festival circuit. Being juried into Plein Air Easton will be a launching pad for national recognition. Become a Champion at Plein Air Easton and you will be at the forefront of shaping the trends of the modern plein air movement.
Newcomers make up a big percentage of the competition artist population - Last year 24% of our artists were brand new to Plein Air Easton (in prior years, it’s been as high as 40%). For the past two years one of those newbies was in the top five highest sales for that year’s competition. It’s not just a pipe dream – it can happen to you.
From the moment you get into town there are opportunities to win prizes. Plein Air Eaton boasts $30,000 in prizes. While the main competition has its fair share of prizes, there are paint outs and quick draws that offer even more opportunities for you to come home with additional cash.
Learn from highly respected colleagues – You will get every opportunity to rub shoulders and share fellowship with some of the greatest plein air painters in the modern era. They will encourage you, challenge you and ultimately, elevate you and your practice. Sharing the PAE experience with professionals of this magnitude is a priceless opportunity. Want more convincing? Take it from 2016 competition artist Sergio Lopez, whose blog post after last year’s competition details his new mantra “Paint like you’re in Easton”
A real chance to grow as an artist. – There is no disputing the fact that this competition is tough. The conditions can be extreme. The competition can be fierce. You might paint larger, smaller, looser or with more clarity than your typical style. There are educational opportunities, demos with your peers and a lot of time to feel inspired. You will paint alongside the nation's best plein air artists pushing themselves to paint at their personal best in the hopes of taking the top prize and the accolades that go along with it. It’s up to you to keep in mind; the biggest challenges are oftentimes the greatest opportunities for personal and professional growth. If you are ready to take your work to the next level, competing at Plein Air Easton is exactly what you’re looking for.
A Community that Loves You and Loves Art - If you are juried into the competition you can expect an unprecedented level of hospitality including host family accommodations, access to spectacular private properties and invites to opulent parties. You can expect to make new friends among your host families and our loyal volunteers, build your network, gain new collectors and learn how much we truly value our competition artists as a community. You will get caught up in the excitement that is Plein Air Easton.
Artist Judge and Juror for 2017 – We know that the choice of judge and juror can impact entries. Sometimes that choice can intimidate those that may be indecisive about entering. This year, no problem; competition artist judge, West Fraser and artist juror, Jill Carver should put everyone at ease. Both are artists. Jill is even a past Plein Air Easton alumni!
The Eastern Shore of Maryland is Spectacular - The area nestled between the Chesapeake Bay and the Atlantic Ocean is referred to as the Delmarva Peninsula, a term coined because the parts of Delaware, Maryland and Virginia are all situated here. The area is rich in history nestled among charming little towns and miles of tidal wetlands and waterfront. We are eager to share the beauty of our landscape(learn more through our friends at Talbot Tourism) and point you in the direction of the perfect spot to create your next masterpiece.
This could be your lucky year – There is every possibility you could be our next grand champion, be in the top ten of our art sales, gather a new following of collectors, be on the exclusive list for invitational competitions, and catapult your art and career to its highest level. Make 2017 the year your dreams come true, become the next Plein Air Master!