The North Carolina Plein Air Painters is an organization to promote plein air painting in the state of North Carolina and to serve the many organized groups that paint plein air within our state. We are here to inspire and provide information for artists interested in painting plein air (outdoors).
Here are some answers to your questions.
1. How do I join?
A. To Join, go to our home page and click on Sign Up at the top right corner of the page. There may be a delay of a few days to activate your membership by the administrator to protect against spammers. Your birthday is required by law as this is a social network, also your city and state is needed. Once you have signed in we encourage you to join a group by clicking on the "Groups" tab at the top of the page and begin participating.
2. Now that I have joined, How do I use this site?
A. You can create a your own page and add images of your work as an individual artist. We encourage you to post your best plein air paintings on our site.
3. If I want to attend an event eg. plein air paint out, how do I sign up?
A. Read the description of the event carefully. We have all types of painting events available, some are competitions and others are open and informal. You can always RSVP electronically as a member, if you are signed in on the site, and we encourage you to do so. You do this by clicking onto the event and clicking the I will attend button. This generates excitement as artists see their friends are attending and will encourage others to participate.
4. What is required of me as a member?
A. Nothing, but remember you get what you put into this community, So those who put in the most will receive the most benefits.
5. How do I put into the group?
A. Participate in one of the numerous plein air groups nearest your location, Post photos of you and your friends painting out, share ideas on our forum, Start your own plein air group, paint out weekly, post plein air videos, Plan an event, attend a plein air workshop, Donate $5-10 annually to help cover our website expense. This is not tax deductible. Sorry. We are not technically a non-profit, though no one is getting rich as we are not selling your emails or running ads on the side bars.
6. About Posting Images
A. Please post your photos, though remember, we have a lot of members, so post your very BEST plein air works. I know we get excited over our latest work, so resist the temptation to post it because it is your latest, So always try to post the best you have done to date. Please don't post your studio paintings for we are trying to promote plein air painting or painting from life, if you have done still lifes and figurative work indoors or anything outdoors, thats what we want to see! Also photos you or your friends painting outdoors is encouraged. To Post you have to sign in, and go to my page and click Add Photos in your slide show, Mac users may have some problems as there is some flash components. You may only add 3 Photos per day. There is a new mobile app available for phones the Itunes store. just look up Ning App, this is the company who created this web platform.
7. About Posting Events
A. The number one rule is, only post PLEIN AIR EVENTS, workshops, paint-outs, exhibits - (plein air only!) Please abide by this rule. If you post something not plein air related, I will be calling you. Any member can post an event, just go to the Events Tab and then click add Event at the top right, please add an image, small and square works best. And make sure you explain who and how artists can participate. This is a great function to get the word out. If you want to stay ingrown then don't post your event on this page ;)
8. How do I join a group?
A. Read the group description carefully and it will either tell how to be put on their mailing list or they will list a website or blog, visit the groups site for more information. Every group is different and has it's own personality, but basically we are all having the same fun experience.
9. Why should try to paint out doors?
A. From Scott Boyle: Most all great painters of past and today have spent considerable time studying from life and for the landscape painter that means going outside. I personally find plein air painting exhilarating in many ways. It inspires me to a deeper level as an artist. it is forcing me to be technically more efficient as a painter. (faster with fewer brush strokes) It helps me to see and understand my own personal artist vision. It help me to understand the nature of light. And it helps me to appreciate weather conditions and mood of the scene which is more authentically translated to my canvas Is it hard to paint outdoors? In the beginning it is quite overwhelming but it gets a little bit easier with each attempt and the rewards are beyond measure!
10. What type of equipment should I bring to paint outdoors?
A. It can be as simple as a lawn chair, paper, pencil, sun hat and bug spray. As for outdoor easels here are some of the popular models: Soltek, Open Box M, Guerilla Painter, EasyL, and the Common French Sketch Box. The best way to learn about equipment is to come and see what other artists are using.
11. Is this an plein air workshop?
A. No. It is simply a time for artists to paint outdoors together, to learn from each other and to facilitate a community spirit among local artists. Possible Plein Air workshops will be posted for artists on the WORKSHOPS Tab above.
12. What if I have never painted outdoors or am a beginner?
A. We strongly encourage you to come anyway. Come, watch, and ask questions. Try sketching with charcoal or pencil. Enjoy the outdoors with other artists who struggle to create!
13. Why are these paint outs Free? What's the catch?
A. From Scott Boyle: I personally have gained so much as an artist by painting plein air. It continues to be a growing passion and inspiration for me. My desire is to grow the plein air movement among artists in the state of North Carolina that they might discover what I have discovered about painting plein air. I want to expose artists to this experience. There is also the benefit of learning from one another and a great time to be had by all. This is a great opportunity for the beginner just to come check it out and experiment with no cost involved. And for the seasoned artist who is a tired of painting alone. I'm not trying to sell anything. I just want to share a blessing. Come out and catch the excitement!
14. Where does the money go that is donated?
A. The money that is donated to our organization goes only to pay for our Ning Website. The cost is $240 due every July. A Donation of $10 is much appreciated. I will email everyone when our costs are covered for the year. Click on the "Donations" Tab at the top of the page to give via our Paypal account. The money given is not tax deductible.
If you have more questions please, use the comment box below, so that I can address them on this page. Thanks, Scott Boyle