The Umpqua Valley Arts Association’s Umpqua Plein Air will return for its ninth year next week when numerous painters from across the region converge on Douglas County for four days of outdoor painting.

“We have 60 people signed up, which is more people than we have had the last three years,” said Sandee McGee, the association’s gallery director. “It’s incredible, we’ve seen a bump in registration and it is because this event is becoming really popular.”

The event begins Tuesday with an artist social and artist talk with the 2019 juror Thomas Jefferson Kitts, a world-renown plein air painter. The first paint-out will be held from 4 p.m. to dusk at a private location along the North Umpqua River.

“People love coming to Roseburg, they love going along the north river, there are just so many special places,” McGee said. “We really are excited about those (sunset) paintings, they’re going to be so different from those daylight paintings that you get throughout the week and also the river paintings from Thursday.”

UVAA provides location suggestions for each day, but participants are welcome to choose their own locations within a 50-mile radius of the art center. Wednesday’s suggested location is the Comiskey Home in Umpqua. Thursday, UVAA suggests the Colliding Rivers Visitor Center in Glide and Friday’s suggested location is Doc Bailey’s Farm in Roseburg. Participants will each submit three paintings that will be judged by Kitts.

Wednesday will also host the Kids Quick Draw, where students kindergarten through 12th grade will be invited to create art “in the open air” at the Umpqua Valley Arts Center. Registration begins at 2 p.m. Supplies will be provided by the art center and art must be produced between 2 and 4:30 p.m.

On Saturday, participants will watch a demo and participate in a paint-out with Kitts. Umpqua Plein Air culminates with an opening reception at 4 p.m., where the newly created “wet” paintings will be on display throughout the art center.

“People will be able to come to the art center and literally see the landscape scenes they see when they are driving home or what they might see in their backyard,” McGee said. “It’s just such a wonderful time to connect through art the place where we all live.”

All the works from this year’s Umpqua Plein Air, including the pieces from the Kids Quick Draw, will be on display from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Friday, and from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday until Oct. 25, at the Umpqua Valley Arts Center.

Erica Welch is the special sections editor for The News-Review. She can be reached at or 541-957-4218.

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Community Reporter

Erica Welch is the special sections editor for The News-Review, mother of two and a native of Roseburg. She is an alumni of RHS, UCC and Western Oregon University. Contact her at or 541-957-4218.

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