Tuesday, August 3, 2021

Outdoor Dining Challenge Results

Thanks to everyone who entered the "Outdoor Painting Challenge" on our Facebook group and Instagram. Entries were posted from all around the world, with both experienced painters and some people who haven't painted outdoors before.

It was a difficult challenge, but you rose to the challenge and tried some bold experiments and braved the elements. It was fun to go through the entries and hard to choose the five finalists. Here they are:



Pritesh Rangole says he did this painting near his college canteen. 


It's oil on canvas, 9x12 inch. Check him out on Instagram. He really gets out there and paints a lot.


Dylan Rabe aka Prosomania posted this on Instagram, saying: "Started on site at @chicagoinrecess with watercolor pencils; rescued in the studio by iridescent inks🦄"


Catherine Cervas Heaton said "Local ice cream crowd at a really far social distancing, more like shy distancing, from my car!"


"Majority of this took 1.25hrs until I couldn’t see color mixtures. Finished at home. Realized I was rushing the telephone wires and I didn’t have to, I could have waited to add those in later. The people are still blobs and need refining but I’m calling it finished."


Zoungy Kligge brought his sketchbook to a July 4 family picnic, and created a montage of observations in the style of classic mid-century American illustrators. He says: "For my #outdoordiningchallenge I wanted to depict the July 4 activities of my family, using a muted red, white, and blue palette. This was the first gathering we all had since prior to the start of the pandemic in early 2020."



Zoungy continues: "I moved the easel wherever the people were, including here on the deck, after the meal. I quickly discovered that it's hard to sketch people in motion, while trying to eat and socialize! I decided to enjoy the time with everyone, and to capture moments before and after the meal with a page of little vignettes. These included: Our grill in the woods, by the Antietam Creek, made from loose bricks and recycled parts of our old chimney. I started sketching my sister at the grill, but replaced her with the daisy bouquet my mother made for the table."
An empty cup and plate, except for the corn cob someone had enjoyed. And, an arrowhead from one of several collections of arrowheads that were shared, dating to many thousands of years ago. My youngest sister found this one in a farmer's field."

"The small, written notations are reminders of things that happened: The remarkable, multi-level rainbow that lasted an hour. The duck food stored in a plastic coffee can, under an upside-down, metal pot. And my father sharing part of the 1832 pension application of Jonathan Vail, my 6th great-grandfather, who in his old age recollected seeing General Washington on July 1, 1776, at Brooklyn."
At Brooklyn, Generals Washington, Putnam, Greene, Sullivan, & Sterling were pointed out to me.
"A note on materials: I used my newly-built 'Gurney easel' and a Pentalic watercolor journal (8 x 5 inches). The sketch was first done in diluted Noodler's gray ink in a water brush, plus line work with an eyedropper pen, same color. Winsor & Newton watercolors in Light Red and Indanthrene Blue, which mix to a nice neutral, and DaVinci white gouache for opacity. Notations written in Noodler's Polar Brown ink."


Bill Wiist says: "A concession stand at R.B. Winter State Park, PA on the 4th of July. Watercolor (with a bit of titanium white acrylic) in my 5.5"x5.5" sketchbook."


Thanks to everyone who took part. I thank each one of you for entering. Each finalist receives a "Department of Art" patch and a free tutorial download. Please email me with your mailing address, and your download preference, and I'll get those to you.


...and just to remind us of how high the bar is for us to try to jump over, feast your eyes on this watercolor and gouache painting of a morning breakfast by the incomparable Anders Zorn (Swedish, 1860-1920).


6 comments:

Joel Fletcher said...

Everyone did a really great job. Congratulations! However, I don't think it is fair to show the "incomparable" Zorn painting at the end. To my eyes, that piece was not entirely painted plein air, but was based on photo reference (which Zorn was known to do). Absolutely nothing wrong with using photo reference, but I doubt any of the contestants did.

Stephen and Nyree said...

Way to go everyone!

Salty Pumpkin Studio said...

Congratulations Everyone!

Ann in Seattle said...

Well-bravo, everyone! Since this was my:
-first contest of sorts
-first gouache in plein air
-first plein air and my foot is broken so was limited to my backyard
-had no idea what I was really doing

I call it a success on all counts and I look forward to next year’s challenge!!

Ann in Seattle said...

Try this again-posting fail first time-

Well-bravo everyone!

These features plein air pieces are marvelous.
Since this was my:
-first contest
-first plein air
-Plein air limited to my deck b/c I have a broken foot
-first painting outside in gouache
…I’m calling it a win☺️

Looking forward to next year’s challenge, when I hope to be in the same league 🙏🏻

Steve Gilzow said...

Love the variety and ingenuity displayed by the finalists. Thanks, James, for bringing this to us.