Competitions & Contests

September | 11th Annual PleinAir Salon

Entry Dates 2021-09-30T23:59:00 - 2021-09-01T00:00:00 5 Days Left


September 2021

11th Annual PleinAir Salon


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Annual Awards
$33,600 in CASH Awards

1st place
$15,000 cash prize plus the cover of PleinAir magazine!

2nd place
$3,000 cash prize plus a feature in the digital edition of PleinAir magazine

3rd place
$1,500 cash prize

People's Choice Award
$500 cash prize

Three finalists: $500 cash prize each — total $1,500
Plus, all winners will be showcased in PleinAir magazine!

Monthly Awards
$9,000 in Cash Awards

1st Place Overall

2nd Place Overall

3rd Place Overall

People's Choice Award

Winners in each monthly competition will receive recognition and exposure through PleinAir magazine's print magazine, e-newsletter and/or social media. Winners will also be entered into the annual competition being awarded at the Plein Air Convention & Expo May 17th, 2022 in Santa Fe, NM.  

Enter as many paintings as you would like, in as many categories as you would like — paintings do not need to be recent or currently in your possession. Open your vault and enter the best paintings you've ever done!


Monthly Competition Awards (22 winners each cycle)

Winner Showcase in weekly PleinAir Today newsletter.

Because this competition is created by PleinAir magazine, which features not only plein air paintings, but also studio paintings, all types of paintings are eligible and do not need to have been completed in plein air, but should originate from a plein air study or plein air experience. As we know, many studio paintings start with plein air sketches. Our interest is in rewarding great paintings.

Winning Categories

1st Place Overall ($600 cash prize)
2nd Place Overall ($300 cash prize)
3rd Place Overall ($100 cash prize)
People's Choice Award ($100 cash prize)
Best Overall Acrylic — Paintings can be of any subject matter in the acrylic medium
Best Overall Oil — Paintings can be of any subject matter in the oil medium
Best Overall Pastel — Paintings can be of any subject matter in the pastel medium
Best Overall Watercolor — Paintings can be of any subject matter in the watercolor medium
Best Artist Under 30 — Must be under the age of 30 (proof of age required), all subject matter is eligible
Best Artist Over 65 — Must be over the age of 65 (proof of age required), all subject matter is eligible
Best Plein Air work only — Must be completed en plein air, all subject matter eligible
Best Building — Cityscapes, farms, architectural elements
Best Figure & Portrait — Figures and portraits, including figures in the landscape
Best Floral — Gardens, fields of flowers, etc.
Best Landscape — Landscape or outdoor environment
Best Nocturne, Sunrise, Sunset — Night scenes, sunrises, sunsets
Best Outdoor Still Life — Table settings, garden ornaments, etc. in an outdoor environment
Best Water — Seascapes, coastal, marine, rivers and streams, etc.
Best Vehicle — Running or run-down
Best Drawing & Sketche — Drawings, sketches, travel sketching (any subject and medium including iPad sketching)
Best Animals & Birds — Animals or birds
Best Western — Any painting featuring a Western theme, landscape or figure

Click here for full competition terms and conditions.