Plein Air Paint Out returns to Railroad Days

Community invited to participate in this year’s Plein Air Paint Out competition Aug. 18.

  • Monday, August 13, 2018 12:30pm
  • News

This summer, those visiting City Hall may view original art works depicting Snoqualmie icons and landscapes – all painted in just one day.

Plein Air, or “in the open air,” is the tradition of painting outdoors, usually with loose brush strokes or composition. The tradition takes advantage of natural light and live painting, rather than studio work or a focus on realism.

Plein Air reached its height during the French Impressionist movement, with well-known artists such as Monet and Renoir choosing to paint in the open air. Even the post-impressionist works of Vincent Van-Gogh were influenced by Plein Air in the French fields of Arles.

Since 2009, the City of Snoqualmie has honored this tradition by hosting the annual Plein Air Paint Out at Snoqualmie Railroad Days.

Each year, adult artists of all skill levels and working in all mediums have gathered to try their hand in the free competition, producing complete art works in just six hours. Hosted by the Snoqualmie Arts Commission, first-place winners receive an offer to buy the original art work for $300, with second and third place prizes of $200 and $100 gift certificates for art supplies.

“The competition produces such beautiful pieces,” Snoqualmie Arts Commission Chair, Sally Rackets, said in a press release. “It’s hard to choose the winning works every time.”

The Plein Air Paint-Out will take place on Saturday Aug. 18, from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. All adult artists are encouraged to sign up at Eventbrite, or at For budding artists under age 18, the free Kids Paint Junction from 12 p.m.-3:30 p.m. Saturday and Sunday of Railroad Days is a great activity.

People can also stop by City Hall and enjoy past winning pieces of the Plein Air Paint-Out. The show has been organized by the Snoqualmie Arts Commission (SAC) and will be on display at City Hall from through Sept. 2018.

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