2016 NC Open Plein Air Festival

One of the greatest blessings of life is plein air painting with friends! Here are my good art buddies, Dean Remington, Bernie Rosage Jr. from Jacksonville, NC and Jeremy Sams from Archdale, NC.  For 3 days we got paint, laugh, and share meals together.  This was the 2nd Annual North Carolina Open plein air festival which ran Aug 12-14, 2016 and was again hosted in Salisbury, NC.  Forty-six artists competing for 3 monetary prizes and 6 honorable mentions. 


1st stop on our plein air tour was Gold Hill, NC.  This was a wonderful historic paintable village nestled in the Piedmont countryside.  Over the years the community has moved and restored small historic buildings which have become retail shops offering arts & crafts, antiques, wine tasting, micro-brewery, history tours, and bluegrass music.

Here is my Gold Hill Painting, “Gold Hill Cottage” 12x16 oil.  I worked on this one for quite a long time, about 4+ hours as it was a bit complicated.  I wanted to paint the cottage immediately when I saw it but had to scout around the whole town before I determined to tackle it.  While I was painting a lady come out sweeping the porch and eventually coming over to talk with me.  I discovered to my surprise that the historic cottage is actually a bed & breakfast.  Later she gave me a tour of the house, and I have to say WOW!  I would call it a 5 star b&b which made the cottage feel even more magical.


Here is Jeremy Sams at Gold Hill doing one of his famous country farm buildings in dappled light.


Sandra Gates from Burnsville, NC painting the historic Jail at Gold Hill


Laurel Lovrek from Burnsville, NC paints the Jail at Gold Hill, NC.


Artist James E. Taylor from Salisbury in the middle between Jeremy and Bernie.


Sharon Forthoffer from the Plein Air Carolina Group which meets to paint every Friday in the Salisbury area.


On the morning of day 2 we painted on Larry and Carolyn Poteat’s Farm at Mt Ulla, NC.  Here is Larry picking okra before the heat of the day.


I have a hard time resisting painting NC barns with quilt art.  I am drawn to them like a moth to the flame.  This was a real tricky one as Larry’s barn has galvanized siding on all sides including the roof, and in shadowed light appeared blue.


Here is my Poteat Farm painting, “Muggy Morning” 12x12 oil, with Larry picking his okra!


Dean Remington painting some of the Poteat sheds and cattle in the beautiful morning light.


Here is the famous Bernie Rosage Jr. at the Poteat Farm.  Bernie is the advanced High School Art teacher in Jacksonville, NC.  He is also founder and leader of the OOPS (Onslow Outdoor Painting Society) in Eastern NC.


This was my 3rd painting on Day 2 at Bull Hole near Cooleemee, NC (August Relief 12x16 oil).  It was so hot, I really felt like jumping in rather than painting.  I really consider this one - more of an abstract of color patterns - yet representing the moving water.  I also enjoy my interaction with all the kids and adults who were swimming.


Here is my 2nd place painting. “Gold Hill Cottage” 12x16 oil


2016 NC Open Plein Air Festival top finishers, L to R - 3rd place Dottie T Leatherwood, 1st place Lawrence Rudolech, and 2nd Place Scott Boyle. 

Scott Boyle