So it might seem trite, but I am really excited about the first day of Sedona Plein Air. Yet, I think it is a different kind of excitement for me these days. I feel less competitive, more relaxed, and more confident.

I have been painting in oil in this style now for 12 years and when I step up to the easel (even though I have switched back to my Soltek easel for the first time in three years, have a new “palm palette” for it, and am using brand new colors) I am pretty sure I can get ‘er done.

Getting an art degree back in the 80′s fostered in me a grave pessimism and competitive (not constructive) critical approach to other artists. Thankfully, 12 years of interacting with and coming to deeply care about my fellow representational artists has cured me of it. At these events, I get to see my friends!

We are all in it for the love of the paint and share our experiences freely. We are genuinely happy to see our peers win awards and sell paintings. Plus, I get to make new friends and meet with people who love what I do enough to part with their money and hang it in their home. What is better than that? Oh yeah, well, there is the unimaginable beauty of Sedona.

Today’s kick off paint-out was on Main St. in Sedona, so the exploration of the natural beauty starts tomorrow for me. I walked a trail last night and this morning to see what the best light was for certain subjects and I have a few things up my sleeve.

You’ll have to wait until tomorrow’s post when I wax poetic about Sedona’s natural landscape and why I think it is one of the most in-your-face-buzz-with-energy places in the country. Oh, and I promise I won’t talk about vortexes.