PleinAir Magazine


PleinAir Cover-FebMar2013

PleinAirâ„¢ Magazine, is published bi-monthly and is focused on the outdoor painting experience. Each issue features images and articles about paintings, painters, and the stories behind them, including art collections and art techniques. You can learn more at

Painting from nature out-of-doors, “en plein air,” and painting from life are the foundation of all painting throughout the history of art. Today tens of thousands of artists and collectors have joined a new plein air movement, which you can follow in the new PleinAir Magazine. Rooted in deep history, each quarterly issue, edited by M. Stephen Doherty, chronicles today’s master artists, their techniques, and the collectors who follow them, as well as the historic artists who came before them.


About Plein Air Painting

Artists Sketching in the White Mountains (1868) by Winslow Homer (1836-1910).
Oil on panel. 9 1/2×15 7/8 in. Portland Museum of Art, Portland, Maine

The French term en plein air means “in the open air,” but it’s come to represent the art of painting outdoors on location. Though plein air painting has been practiced for generations by such  such as Rembrandt, John Constable, Claude Lorrain, Thomas Gainsborough, and others it was popularized by the French Barbizon School (1830-1870), a movement of painters named after the village of Barbizon, near Fountainbleau Forrest, where artists like Jean-Francois Millet, Jean-Baptiste Camille Corot, Theodore Roysseau, Charles-Francois Daubigny, Jules Dupre, and others gathered to paint. The popularity of plein air painting grew increased with the invention of tubed paint and portable easels in the mid-19th century, and a group of artists who worked outdoors to capture natural light. Claude Monet, Camille Pisarro, and Pierre-Auguste Renoir were among those who promoted painting en plein air. Many French, American, Russian, Chinese, and Canadian impressionists followed the practice, which has endured and become enormously popular today.

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