Quickdraw, a friendly competition where artists have three and a half hours to depict pictures of historic Punta Gorda “en plein air” is organized each year by The Visual Arts Center and the Peace River Painters. It’s open to 2D VAC members and nonmembers who choose to register in advance or on the morning of the Jan. 14 competition, but only one painting in the medium of their choice may be submitted per artist.

It’s not too late to download an invitation for a Collector’s Preview that is open to the public, a registrations form, and a detailed timeline of events at https://visualartcenter.org. At the 1 p.m. Collector’s Preview taking place in the VAC Main Gallery the public is invited to meet and greet participating artists and preview the freshly-finished plein air paintings. A sandwich buffet will also be available for purchase at $15 per person for those who RSVP in advance.

Awards and prizes in the form of ribbons and cash include a first prize, a second prize, and a third prize- plus Merit recognition for best non-oil medium, best subject, and best use of light. A special Best of Show and a People’s Choice award will be presented as well. As judged awards will be determined by the number of entries, not all prizes may be awarded.

“Along with the Quickdraw Jan. 14 competition a Plein Air Show will be taking place at the Visual Arts Center from Jan. 8-31,”explained Sharon Yarbrough representing the Peace River Painters Plein Air Group. Any artwork sales will benefit the visual Arts Center as proceeds support current and future VAC events and help further their mission of supporting artists at all levels through exhibition and education. The public is also invited to attend a wine and cheese awards reception at 5 p.m. Jan. 17.

The Visual Arts Center, 210 Maud Street, Punta Gorda is a 501©(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to the creation and enjoyment of the arts in Southwest Florida. The Peace River Painters encourage VAC members and nonmembers who want to try their hand at plein air painting to paint with them, take classes, or participate in workshops taught by area master artists. To learn more contact peaceriverpainters@gmail.com or go to www.peaceriverpainters.com.

To learn more, make reservations for the preview luncheon on Jan. 14, or make reservations for the wine and cheese awards reception on Jan. 17, contact The Visual Arts Center, 210 Maud St., Punta Gorda at 941-639-8810. For a detailed timeline of events go to: https://visualartcenter.org.

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