Plein Air At the Vineyards – Sponsored by Gilmer Arts and Ellijay Wine Country Vineyards
I was fortunate enough to participate in “Plein Air at the Vineyards”, an event in the Ellijay area of north Georgia. Regional artist had the opportunity to paint in the vineyards for 3 days (Friday – Sunday), culminating in a live auction of the artists original works on Sunday evening. Visitors and patrons were able to sample wine and tour the vineyards during the event. Artists were treated to breakfast, lunch and wine receptions every evening.
Each winery was a spectacular setting, with rolling hills of grape vines highlighted with the blue Georgia mountains in the background.
Chateaux Meichtry was the first vineyard I painted, one in the morning and one in the afternoon. I decided to try underpainting with watercolors, something I never do while painting outside. Mostly because it takes so long to dry. However, with the hot sun beating down, it took no time at all.
Across the street from Chateaux Meichtry was a field of hay bales. After the wonderful evening wine reception, my friend and fellow artist, Jill McGannon and I, couldn’t resist setting our easels back up painting the setting sun along the field.
The second day was spent at Fainting Goat Vineyard, a small winery set on a very steep hill. After a quick morning painting, the artists did a “quick draw” a timed 2 hour painting. My other painting buddy, Camille Day was the prize winner with a beautiful painting. On Sunday, I got 2 morning paintings finished and framed at Engelheim Winery.
The auction was held at Ellijay River Winery. The vineyard owners were able to select paintings they wanted before the auction. I felt honored the owners of Chateaux Meichtry, bought 2 of my paintings, and their assistant wine maker bought one. The best part is that they will use my painting image for one of their wine labels! Very cool!