Solomons Plein Air Festival
The Solomons Plein Air Festival is unique in that it offers the artists such diversity in painting subject matter. Solomons Island is an historic fishing village where working boats of the Chesapeake Bay were built in the 1800s. It was chosen by Coastal Living Magazine as “one of the top 15 happiest seaside towns in the U.S.” It is located just an hour from the Beltway in D.C. at the “other end of Pennsylvania Avenue” where the Patuxent River meets the Chesapeake Bay. It is now a picturesque mix of work boats, pleasure boats, marinas, old fishermen’s cottages, rural farmland, and quaint architecture with a few shops scattered amongst historic waterfront buildings. Stand in one spot on the Solomons Riverwalk and you can paint any of these things and more.
The Solomons Plein Air Festival allows artists the opportunity to enjoy not only painting but sharing their creativity with the public. To the viewers, this art form can be very exciting because it invites them into the creative process: the sight, sound, and even smell of the artists’ world. The competitive side of the process pits artists against each other for prizes awarded after 4 days of painting “en plein air” (outside on location).
Artists will have the opportunity to paint not only on beautiful Solomons Island, but in other picturesque locations around Calvert County. Wednesday, Sept. 17, artists will be able to choose their own Calvert Co. location from a thoughtfully compiled list of suggestions. On Thursday artists will paint in the Nocturnal Quick Draw Competition. Guests are welcome to paint alongside the artists for a registration fee of $25. On Friday the “en plein air” painting will be located in Solomons. New this year will be the Saturday morning event on the Riverwalk: “Paint the Town for a Cause – an Art from the Heart Public Paint Out.” All are welcome to paint alongside the artists for free, or just wander the Riverwalk and view the artists at work. *Artists must paint within the competition boundaries and without the assistance of photographs. Any medium may be used, although photography is not acceptable in this competition. Artists must turn in up to three framed, ready to hang artworks. (Two will be hung in the main gallery, but all will be displayed.) Exhibit and sale will take place at carmen’s gallery on Solomons Island Saturday evening, September 20 in the grand “Affaire of the Arts.”
Cash awards include “Best of Show,” 2nd and 3rd places and the ever-popular Artists’ Choice Award, among others. Prizes and awards will be given on Saturday morning to juried and non-juried artists at the “Paint the Town for a Cause” event. New this year: Cash Awards for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place on Saturday morning for paintings involving the cars on the Riverwalk, presented and adjudicated by Team Hyundai. Additional Awards will be presented at the committee’s discretion.
ART SALES support great causes!
A portion of the profits from the Solomons Plein Air Festival will be donated to P.A.W.S, Sophia’s Oasis for Equines, HeartFELT, student art scholarships at the College of Southern Maryland, and the Solomons Business Association’s July 4th fireworks. Your painting purchase will support the artists and good causes all around. We appreciate your participation in our event and hope to see you there!