Stephanie painting

I was standing there watching the sun rise. I could see the majestic reds and purples as my car pulled up, and I couldn’t get my easel set up fast enough. The waves were gently crashing around the rocks along the shore; the sky getting more vibrant as time passed, and the pine trees of the shore standing in perfect silhouette. It was a slice of magic, as were many moments last week.

I got to spend the week at Plein Air Magazine’s Publishers Invitational Fall Color Week, where about 60 artists gathered together to descend upon Acadia National Park in Maine.

I’m still processing the experience as I fly home. My head filled with memories and inspiration. There is so much to be learned when the only thing you have to think of all day is painting in beautiful locations. I painted between 3-5 paintings everyday. Each one made me hungry to do the next one even better. It doesn’t always work out that way. But the desire is there, pure intention.

And the gift of being in the presence of all of those other artists! You can learn a lot in the presence and conversation with those on your same path.

The lesson I learn again and again is success in the process of making art — as in many things — is about hours logged. We paint to teach ourselves how to paint, and I’m thankful to this event for making it possible for me to log a lot of hours with some pretty incredible and wildly talented human beings!

Painting in progress