As part of Paint Out Wells 2015artists were encouraged to rise early and paint the sunrise at Wells-next-the-Sea beach. This was not part of the main competition and so was optional. We are grateful to Rosemary & Co for their sponsorship of a brushes set prize for the best Paint Out artist painting Ebb Tide, Wells which was won by Roy Connelly, a veteran prize winner at Paint Out Norwich 2014. For other prize awards at Wells see here.
Artist Roy Connelly
Roy Connelly competed in both Paint Out Wells 2015 and Paint Out Norwich 2014 at which he won the third prize. Roy is a founder member of the Plein Air Brotherhood, and says he is just as happy with his easel and box of oil paints on a deserted beach as he is at noisy and busy Trafalgar Square in London. His home turf is the area in Suffolk, close to where Gainsborough and Constable lived and worked.
Rosemary & Co Artists’ Brushes
Rosemary & Co artists’ brushes are all hand made to the finest quality and come ready for acrylic, oil, pastels or watercolour. There are easily portable plein airpochade sets, specialist sets for botanical, garden, or studio painting, and many more besides.
The inaugural Paint Out Norwich competition saw a high standard of work among the over 100 entries by 28 artists at 7 locations spread across the 2 days of 22-23 October. A maximum allowed painting time of 3 hours for each canvas, very often ended up as less, with setting up, selecting a viewpoint and possibly changing their minds. Some artists managed more than one painting in a single session, another was able to knock off early!
“I have never seen people paint as a competitive sport before … it was astonishing to witness in the city … what really amazed us was that this brought together … pressure of time limit, pressure of light, pressure of constantly interacting with a public … to a deadline.” – Amanda Geitner, Sainsbury Centre for the Visual Arts (SCVA)
The judges – Trevor Chamberlain, Colin Self, and Amanda Geitner, were “knocked sideways by the extraordinarily consistent, commanding quality of the works” and were absolutely in accord in their choices of winners. The competition brought an opportunity “to celebrate the tenacity of figurative painting, the skill and discipline of painting … experienced in the real.” – Amanda Geitner, SCVA
The Prizes and Winners
Haidee-Jo Summers, “Work to be Done” (#53)
First Prize, sponsored by Savills, went to Haidee-Jo Summers for her piece, “Work to be Done”, created outside the corner craft shop looking down Elm Hill, past the suddenly erected scaffolding and “road closed” signs that had appeared overnight and remained for just 24 hours. She wins £1000. Haidee is a veteran winner of Plein Air painting competitions across the country and has a track record of half a dozen prizes under her belt recently.
Chris Daynes, “The Watergate” (#8)
The Second Prize of £500, courtesy of The EDP, went to Chris Daynes for his oil painting at Pull’s Ferry called “The Watergate”.
Roy Connelly, “The Dark Entry” (#63)
Third Prize of £250, also courtesy of The EDP, went to Roy Connelly for his Norwich Cathedral doorway painting called “The Dark Entry”).
None of this would have happened without the generous overall sponsorship of Broadland Wines, printing courtesy of Ten Group‘s City College Norwich print room, and the tireless commitment of time and energy of our team and volunteers. A beautiful gesture was made by one of the artists, Wil Harvey, in order to appreciate the work of the volunteers, and he donated another one of his Norwich ink drawings to a draw-selected volunteer. Jeanette McCracken was the lucky winner and recipient.
Francesca Heathorn’s red “Phone boxes” (#72)
One of the judges, the artist Colin Self, said that he “couldn’t believe that somebody sitting their engaging with the real had made a work that to him transported him into a really hallucinogenic dream state”, there was something other worldly about it, he was struck powerfully by it, whatever the artist’s intention.
Simon Page’s “Marzanos – the Forum” (#106)
“With so many arresting, charming, extraordinary, transporting, views outside the city environment it was great that one of the artists pulled us up right short into a really direct encounter with bodies, with people, in the crush of an urban environment.” – Amanda Geitner
Cornelia Fitzroy’s “Crome Gallery” (#11) at Elm Hill
“Yours was the cool glass of water,… calm, clarity of … work” – Amanda Geitner
Auction and Exhibition
Some of the paintings sold at the Auction event, attended by nearly 200 people, within hours of the paintings being completed – indeed, many were not yet dry, and some may not be for days and weeks to come! Many have subsequently sold at the Exhibition which ran until 2 November at the Norwich Cathedral Hostry, however they all remained on display for the duration for viewing the winners, honourable mentions, and those still available for purchase. An online version of the exhibition will follow in due course.
Numbers, e.g., (#53), mentioned above relate to the painting numbers in the Exhibition gallery at the Hostry.
Applications for the inaugural Paint Out Norwich 2014 competition closed at midnight on 1 September.
We had an overwhelmingly positive response from artists near and far. Some 60 applications, about 60% from the broader East Anglia region and others from the rest of the UK and Europe, were received. International interest from farther afield, such as the United States, was also received and as the competition grows in future years we expect further artists to apply and expand the reach of the vision.
Partake or Spectate?
If you didn’t apply, don’t make the final cut, or are just interested in art and live painting en plein air, then why not come along and watch the competitors as they paint on Wednesday October 22 and Thursday, October 23 at the iconic and historic sites around Norwich including Pull’s Ferry, the Norwich Market, The Cathedrals, Elm Hill and the Norwich Castle.
Selection Panel & Process
Between September 1 and 21 the submitted artists were scrutinised by our panel of experts including Will Buckley, Rachel Campbell-Johnston, James Colman, Rev Dr Peter Doll, Mike King, and Stephanie Sinclair, in order to select not only the best, but a varied range of styles to make for an interesting and exciting competition that will appeal to both artists and appreciators of art.
Competing Artists Announced
Paint Out Norwich would like to announce that the following 31 artists have been selected to participate in the inaugural 2014 event:
John Behm, Timothy Betjeman, Bryony Birkbeck, Richard Bond, Patrick Boswell, Leon Bunnewell, Roy Connelly, Chris Daynes, Anthea Eames, Katie Falcon, Cornelia Fitzroy, Gerald Green, Mark Greenwood, Jane Hall, Wil Harvey, Francesca Heathorn, Tyga Helme, Mary Kallagher, Dan Llywelyn Hall, Chloe Mandy, Stephen Martyn, Elizabeth Monahan, Simon Page, David Pilgrim, Janet Poole, Michael P Richardson, Graham Rider, Haidee-Jo Summers, Mo Teeuw, Liam Wales, and Philip Wilkinson.
Congratulations to all of them for getting selected. Commiserations, also, to all those who did not make it this time – please try again next year. The quality and range of submitted previous art work was wonderful and led to difficult decisions for the selectors.