Artists from as far as Connecticut traveled to Hillsborough to display artwork depicting landscapes and landmarks in Orange County for the fifth annual Paint it Orange Plein Air Paint-Out and Wet Paint Sale, which was held from Nov. 3 to Nov. 5.
Three winners were chosen, with the first-place winner earning a $750 prize, the second-place winner earning $500 and the third-place winner earning $250.
The works of art were also made available for purchase during the Wet Paint Sale on the final day of the event. The first-place painting was on sale for $500, the second-place painting for $450 and the third-place painting for $350.
The winner of the contest was Max Dowdle from Hillsborough, whose painting was titled "Eno Autumn: Cathedral of Fire." In second place was Nerys Levy from Carrboro, whose painting was named "Morgan Glen #1, Carrboro." Third place went to Mateus Costa from Cheltenham, Penn., with his painting "1:15pm Departure from Carrboro."
UNC first-year Mason Chapman participated in the event last week. He primarily creates landscape pieces and wanted to try plein air painting, which involves painting landscapes outdoors rather than in a studio.
“I had never done plein air painting before and I guess I already have an appreciation for the natural world, so I thought it would be a fun experience,” Chapman said.
James Keul, an artist from Durham who participated in the event, said he has been a part of contests across the state in the past and enjoys the communal aspect of displaying art together.
“It’s great to network with other artists, meet new people, and it’s always fun to have a competition element that ups the stakes a bit,” Keul said.
He said many of his works are large-scale figurative paintings based on environmental themes such as climate change. He also spends time working on plein air painting.