The Eagle Plein Air Festival Celebrates Five Years With Events for Amateurs and Pros 

click to enlarge COURTESY EAGLE PLEIN AIR FESTIVAL
  • Courtesy Eagle Plein Air Festival
Five years ago, it was a few painters, easels and canvasses set up in the hills and at the Boise River in Eagle. Today, the Eagle Plein Air Festival has grown into a competition for on-the-fly painters from across the region.

"We're international now," said Meg Glasgow, president of Finer Frames in Eagle, which hosts the event. "We have 70 painters from across the U.S. and Canada. It's extremely exciting. It's a weeklong festival centered on workshops for artists, daily demonstrations for lay people."

"Plein air" painting is exactly what it sounds like—painting that takes place in the open air. People who do it, Glasgow said, tend to be social, and the festival itself is geared toward professionals looking to score cash, paint supplies and other prizes; and the general public. It will run from Friday, May 31, to Saturday, June 8, and run the gamut of high-dollar workshops—landscape painter Allie Zeyer will conduct several; they run from $125-$135—free painting excursions across the Treasure Valley.

For folks who just want to see what it's all about, there will be demonstrations every day of the festival, and there will be a capstone event, Art in the Garden, on Saturday, June 1, a paid event ($35 admission) that includes a "quick draw," live blues, wine and food trucks at Underhill Gardens. The action wraps up with an awards show and sale at 5 p.m. on June 8 at Finer Frames in Eagle, where the approximately 300 paintings produced over the course of the week will be sold.

Glasgow said she has worked to make the festival as painter- and pedestrian-friendly as possible.

"It's really meant to be interactive. You can participate. If you want to watch, you can do that. There are lots of ways people can enjoy," she said.

For a full schedule of events or get tickets for special events, check out the EPAF website

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