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Opus Outdoor Painting Challenge 2014

We send a big THANK YOU to the 739 artists of all ages who challenged themselves to capture the beauty of nature, urban life, and their imaginations in our 3rd Annual Opus Outdoor Painting Challenge, held at our six Opus locations across BC on Saturday, May 10th, 2014.

Families, friends, and artists working solo took their creative process outside and shared it with their communities, alongside our on-site experts who demonstrated how they paint en plein air, traversing through our painting zones helping artists throughout the day. Another big THANK YOU is in order for the 18 judges who had tough decisions to make when selecting their top picks for each age category.

The day is done but the Opus Outdoor Painting Challenge is not over. We hope you continue to challenge yourself all this spring and summer… and beyond! Take your creativity out into your community now and keep the adventure going. Check out our Resources for the Outdoor Artist page for links to plein air inspired videos, like our Field Studies: Painting en Plein Air video featuring Downtown Juror, Gaye Adams, to keep the inspiration going. We also host Visiting Artists who offer free demonstrations at Opus on all manner of art techniques, including working outdoors.

Our staff documented some of the day at each of Opus location: Granville Island, Downtown Vancouver, North Vancouver, Langley, Kelowna, and Victoria. The judges top selections from each location, images from the day, and links to blog posts of the event are below.

Granville Island Outdoor Painting Challenge: May, 2014

Opus Granville Island Photo Gallery

See all of artworks in our Opus Granville Island OPC2014 Gallery on Facebook.

Kids (up to age 12):

First Place: Elyse J.

Second Place: Joy L.

Youth (13 -18 y.o):

First Place: Olivia Z.

Second Place: May L.

Third Place: Annie T.

Adult (19+):

First Place: Lorne Craig

Second Place: Irina Kharina

Third Place: Theresa Eaton

Honourable Mention: Reynato Pablo

Mandy Bouriscot
Enda Bardell
Lori Sokuluk

On-site Expert:
Listel Bjorck from Gamblin Artist Colors

Highlights Of The Day:

The enthusiasm was great at Granville Island — artists zipped out of the store to get themselves set up and begin their day of painting. Though the clouds changed the light constantly, experts, enthusiasts, young artists, and even a teddybear stood up to the challenge. Thanks to the teachers and students from Crofton House School for spending the day with us. And the wonderful sense of community of the day was beautifully illustrated at this location when an artist who had arrived with a panel that was too large for the Challenge decided to set up with a “Come Help Me Paint!” sign, inviting artists and passersby alike to make their mark on her canvas! A great way to get the community involved in art-making outdoors!

Downtown Vancouver Outdoor Painting Challenge: May 10, 2014

Opus Downtown Photo Gallery

See all of the artworks in our Opus Downtown Vancouver OPC2014 Gallery on Facebook.

Kids (up to age 12):

First Place: Annika B.

Second Place: Isabella L. (photo not available)

Third Place: Ethan F. (photo not available)

Youth (13 -18 y.o):

First Place: Anna T.

Second Place: Tanya T. (photo not available)

Adult (19+):

First Place: Carol Lafave

Second Place: James Koll

Third Place: Alain Boullard

Honourable Mention: Brenda Elliot

Lianne Gulka
Gaye Adams
Eri Ishii

On-site Experts:
Bryan Coombs
Jeff Wilson
David McHolm
Sean Karemaker

Highlights Of The Day:

Our challengers filled the streets of downtown Vancouver and thus, drew a lot of attention to our local arts community. From the urban space around the Gassy Jack statue, to the boat docks at Portside park, the submissions were as varied as the artists attending.

One of the onsite experts, Sean Karemaker, set up at the entrance of Opus Downtown Vancouver and inspired at least a dozen customers and passersby to sign in and participate! And one of the biggest highlights was the Opus customer, who chose to remain anonymous, purchasing a Sooke Easel for all 6 of the judges selections for the Youth and Kids categories. They wanted to encourage the young artists to continue pursuing the arts beyond the challenge. We hope this generous donation inspires these young artists to keep creating, both inside and outdoors!

North Vancouver Outdoor Painting Challenge: May 10, 2014

Opus North Vancouver Photo Gallery

See all of the artworks in our Opus North Vancouver OPC2014 Gallery on Facebook.

Kids (up to age 12):

First Place: Anghelikki S. (photo not available)

Second Place: Graham R. (photo not available)

Third Place: Miranda W.

Youth (13 -18 y.o):

First Place: Luc M.

Second Place: Kristen S.

Third Place: Elizabeth

Adult (19+):

First Place: Charlie Pan

Second Place: Alice Bottrill

Third Place: Song Oh

Kiff Holland
Sande Waters
Tim Sullivan

On-site Experts:
Ross Penhall
Sheree Jones
Cathy Roddie
Amy Bell
Dave Denson (Opus Staff)
April Andruchuk (Opus Staff)

Highlights Of The Day:

Not only did we get independent contestants, but our North Vancouver store had groups of friends and family huddled under tents to create together. These groups spanned the entirety of the seawall with onlookers ecstatic about seeing them in the process.

They also set up a kid’s art table out front of the store so the younger contestants could work on their submissions together. The 3rd place selection in the Kids category was so excited to keep creating, she didn’t make it back to hear her name announced as she was too busy painting another piece at home. Now that’s dedication!

Langley Outdoor Painting Challenge: May 10, 2014

Opus Langley Photo Gallery

See all of the artworks in our Opus Langley OPC2014 Gallery on Facebook.

Kids (up to age 12):

First Place: Esther B.

Second Place: Khiana K.

Third Place: Alex M.

Youth (13 -18 y.o):

First Place: Julia N.

Second Place: Janice K.

Third Place: Rachel O.

Adult (19+):

First Place: Denise Maxwell

Second Place: Kim Stepney

Third Place: Carla Maskall

Barry Walker
Marilyn Hunt
Nancy Crawford

On-site Experts:
Michael King

Highlights Of The Day:

The Langley store was swinging on the day of the challenge, and with the new age categories (expanded this year to include a Kids category and a Youth category), the turnout in the Kids category was astounding! Almost 40 Kids and 10 Youth, including several Langley Fine Arts School students, showed up to participate and the enthusiasm was fantastic — after a long day of painting, drawing and creating they were eager to share with their cohorts where they’d been, how they had composed or completed their works, as well as sharing their knowledge about the products they used  — some old favourites, and other new ones bought to try out that day.

The Outdoor Painting Challenge in Langley proved to be one very creative and social day for many of the participating artists. Time spent in lineups was, for many, time spent catching up with friends and discussing art with other participants.

Kelowna Outdoor Painting Challenge: May 10, 2014

Opus Kelowna Photo Gallery

See all of the artworks in our Opus Kelowna OPC2014 Gallery on Facebook.

Kids (up to age 12):

First Place: Sara M.

Second Place: Leyla P.

Third Place: Presley D.

Youth (13 -18 y.o):

First Place: Haley S.

Second Place: Ashley D.

Third Place: Emma P.

Adult (19+):

First Place: Ted Hayward

Second Place: Dani Lachuk

Third Place: Ann Willsie

Rhythm Hunter
Diana Suzuki Jaegli
Jolene Mackie

On-site Experts:
Keith Routley

Highlights Of The Day

One of the participants in both the 1st and 2nd Outdoor Painting Challenges, Keith Routley, was invited to be an Expert at the Kelowna store this year. With his outdoor studio set up in the park across the street from Opus Kelowna, Keith spent the day inviting people passing by to try their hand at painting, and encouraging them to sign up for the Challenge, too. Thanks for bringing your infectious enthusiasm, Keith! So many entries led to a huge turnout at the end of the day in Kelowna, too — participants returned with their cheerleading entourages to see the artwork that had been entered and see the Judges’ Picks.

Victoria Outdoor Painting Challenge: May, 2014

Opus Victoria Photo Gallery

See all of artworks in our Opus Victoria OPC2014 Gallery on Facebook.

Kids (up to age 12):

First Place: James L.

Second Place: Maggie M.

Third Place: Emily L.

Youth (13 -18 y.o):

First Place: Fiona G.

Second Place: Susan S.

Third Place: Chris W.

Adult (19+):

First Place: John Hoffman

Second Place: Elaine Charters

Third Place: Jenny Hainsworth

Catherine Moffat
Lynda Faulks
Victor Lotto

On-site Experts:
Deborah Tilby
Jim McFarland

Highlights Of The Day:

As the day began, we found groups of friends, families, and lots of individuals lining up and raring to paint. It was a “mostly-sunny” day when first we discovered that there was a large group of a dozen or so people scattered along the Songhees rocks and shore. By late in the morning, they’d each sorted out their spots and set up their supplies to create with, but when we returned in the afternoon to check in on their progress and snap a few more photos, we found that the majority had left when the rain started. Luckily, five remaining “hardcore painters” had relocated their workspaces under a cluster of 3 large chestnut trees. They were all chatting and working away on their pieces, and when asked if they all had come together, it turned out only 2 of the 5 had — what a nice way to make new friends!

Blog Posts

Michael King

Enda Bardell

The Graphic Garden

Vancouver Fine Art Atelier

Carol Jensen Art

Anne Lei-Yeung So


Shaw TV’s Go! Okanagan: The Fundamentals of Plein Air Painting

OPC 2014: You’re Invited!

If you would like notification of events like this happening at the Opus nearest you, you may wish to subscribe to our Visual Arts Newsletter and our email communications. You may do so at any of our stores, by phone at 1-800-663-6953, or by email at info@opusartsupplies.com.