En Plein Air 2015 Season starts this Sunday 3PM

Weather is getting cooler so let’s head outside to do our art! Meet at the Art Shed, end of Crispe St. at 3P. This first session we will paint around the Shed.

See the link under “What’s On .. ” for more details.

Let's Paint Outdoors!

Let’s Paint Outdoors! (watercolour by Pauline Clack)

Bring your art gear, and a hat. Easels available if needed.

Consider some snacks for during and afters. Tea/coffee $2, wine by donation.

Hoping to see many of you.

FINAL En Plein Air for 2014 Season – Sunday 21st Sept. from 3PM

Reminder that we are meeting this Sunday at Simpsons Gap (not Cassia Hill that overlooks Simpsons Gap).


Would be great to see you at the final session for the year. Please consider bringing a friend too. Please join us for art, to read a book, take some photos or just explore  .. whatever .. and enjoy a BYO BBQ toward sunset.
Call Dugald if you have any questions. However please first read the detail by opening the 2014 Program link at: https://caasinc.wordpress.com/plein-air/


From The President – August, 2014


Temperatures in Central Australia are starting to increase heralding the hotter months ahead and reminding us to be active outside with our art before it gets too hot to do so.  On that note, please try to make our final En Plein Air event to be held at Simpsons Gap/Cassia Hill on Sunday 21 September.  It will be great to see a big turnout for this one given it tends to mark the end of our outdoor activities for the year.

Go to: https://caasinc.files.wordpress.com/2014/04/caas2014enpleinairprog.pdf for more details.

Many thanks to those who entered this year’s Advocate Art Award.  I hope that it lived up to your expectations and that you enjoyed having your work displayed in the Araluen gallery.  It was also pleasing to see the big turn up at the opening ceremony and at the Walk in the Art session on the last day.  The general feeling amongst those I spoke to was that the standard of entry was particularly high this year.  The exhibition certainly looked outstanding and again I’d like to thank those members who volunteered their time leading up to and during the event and to the staff at the Araluen Art Centre for being so helpful.  I’d also like to take this opportunity to thank all of our sponsors.  Their contribution is gratefully acknowledged.  However, we still require sponsorship for the overall Excellence Award, so please keep your ears to the ground and let us know of any potential sponsors out there. Some of the statistics from this year’s event makes interesting reading:

  • There were 63 entries with 17 being first time entrants
  • 13 pieces sold and one piece was acquired by Araluen for its collection
  • 701 people voted for the People’s Choice and approximately 700 visitors viewed the exhibition over the two weeks.

Life Drawing activities at the Art Shed continue to be popular and committee member Mark Wilson does a great job of organising models. For details contact: lifedrawingCAAS@iinet.net.au or phone Mark on 0428 478 143. (Send an sms if you prefer)  To receive notice of the Saturday afternoon sessions send us your email address. The Wednesday evening Long Pose group works strictly by SMS to a mobile phone to give a quicker turnaround time. Non-members welcome but there is an extra $5 charge.

Our Secretary Nyssa Mullooly recently stood down from the committee and moved to Brisbane.  I’d like to acknowledge the splendid work that Nyssa did during her time on the committee and wish her and her partner Chris every success for the future.

In the meantime, the committee is working hard organising various other activities coming your way soon.  Please keep in touch https://caasinc.wordpress.com/ – members and friends are always welcome at the Art Shed and to any of our activities.

Happy Art

Ron Talbot


0466 791 400

En Plein Air – Sunday 18th May – Telegraph Station

Telegraph Station - Alice Springs

Our 2014 En Plein Air season kicks off this Sunday 3PM at the Telegraph Station. Meet on the river bank behind the main building.  If you are running late look for us scattered about! Bring your art materials as you need. Please consider that the social aspects are as (if not more) important as the artistic endeavour! Do as much, or as little art as you desire! Consider bringing a vino and BBQ grub to enjoy with your snacks that can be as simple or elaborate as you so wish. These we normally share after a time of drawing/painting .. whatever.  Remember a hat, water and a stool. Contact a committee member if you wish to borrow an easel.

Season Program details are under the ‘Plein Air’ TAB at the top, below the banner.

(Photo courtesy Allan Weeks)

En plein air  is a French expression which means “in the open air”, and is particularly used to describe the act of painting outdoors, which is also called peinture sur le motif  (“painting on the ground”) in French.

Claude Monet – Painting by the Edge of a Wood (1885)


John Lavery – The Principal Street at Grez (1884)

Emil Orlik – Max Slevogt an der Staffelei im Garten (Neukastell) (1917)

Winslow Homer – Artists Sketching in the White Mountains (1868)


Images from the Wikimedia Commons.            Commons is a freely licensed media file repository.

Artists have long painted outdoors, but in the mid-19th century working in natural light became particularly important to the Barbizon school and Impressionism. The popularity of painting en plein air increased in the 1870s with the introduction of paints in tubes (resembling modern toothpaste tubes). Previously, each painter made their own paints by grinding and mixing dry pigment powders with linseed oil. The Newlyn School in England is considered another major proponent of the technique in the latter 19th century.

It was during this period that the “Box Easel”, typically known as the French Box Easel or field easel, was invented. It is uncertain who developed it first, but these highly portable easels, with telescopic legs and built-in paint box and palette, made treks into the forest and up the hillsides less onerous. Still made today, they remain a popular choice even for home use since they fold up to the size of a brief case and thus are easy to store.

(Source: Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)

En Plein Air Activities 2014

With the cooler weather arriving it’s time to move our art outdoors again! Our first meeting kicks off at the Telegraph Station on Sunday 18th May at 3PM.



Scott Bennett’s painting of the Macdonnells from Frank McAllister Park. Completed at one of our sessions in 2013.


So please consider joining us for some art and a social. Full season’s program under the ‘Plein Air’ TAG above. Brief details available under the ‘Calendar’ TAG.



En Plein Air – Sunday 1st Sept. -Totem Theatre

Pauline-TempleBar13Web6Consider joining us this Sunday at 3PM at the Totem Theatre.

Meet  3PM in the Totem Theatre car park on the Todd riverbank (beside Anzac Oval – access off the Anzac Oval carpark).

As usual bring your art supplies, a chair, water, hat and some nibbles for our social meet afterwards. Time is running out for outdoor art so avail of the second last session for the Winter season.

(Our finale will be at Honeymoon Gap, Sunday Sept. 22.)

Questions? Call Dugald 0409 174 719 or Mark 0428 478 143

En Plein Air – Sunday 18 August 2013


Dugald at the Alice Springs Telegraph Station, June 2013

Please consider joining us this Sunday 18th August when we meet for art and social activities. In our 50th year we have been meeting at venues significant to CAAS. This month we are meeting at Temple Bar on Ilparpa Rd. (The full season program is under the ‘Plein Air’ TAB in the menu above.)

Join us on Ilparpa Rd at the turn-off (T/O) to the Archery Complex at 3pm.  We will wait till 3:15pm. If you are a little late you will get a second and final chance at 3:30pm when Mark will return to the T/O a final time. You might try and phone Dugald 0409 174 719 or Mark 0428 478 143 before you leave town or en-site if you have signal coverage.


Meet on Ilparpa Rd at the X at 3PM

Remember your water, hat, appropriate seating for your needs along with your art materials. Toward sunset we will get together for a chat and some afternoon tea if you care to bring something along. Remember some vino if interested.

We look forward to you joining us in the Great Outdoor Studio.




Au Plein Air Activities

Please note change of venue for this Sunday 16 June 2013 –  Old Telegraph Station

rocky outcrop

Dugald Beattie – “Rocky Outcrop”
at Old Telegraph Station, Alice Springs 2012

As you are aware this being our 50th Anniversary year we are holding our sketching sessions at locations in and around Alice Springs where CAAS has some history.  These sketches will be the basis of an exhibition highlighting some of our past experiences. This exhibition will open 8 September, which is why the Old Telegraph Station has been moved forward to this Sunday’s session. CAAS has a strong connection with the Old Telegraph Station and we want to have some sketches from there. One of CAAS’s first exhibitions was held here in 1964.

Beginners and those who haven’t sketched outside before are more than welcome to join us.   Hope to see  you there!

Meet at the riverbank just behind the Telegraph Station building from 3pm.  We’ll have a BBQ afterwards so bring some food and drink. Remember the warm clothing!


0409 174 719

2013 Season program:  Go to the Plein Air TAB above.