The Beautiful Finger Lakes Region

Some of the artists relaxing after the event

In June 2018 I drove about 12 hours from my house in Maine to the finger Lakes region. Specifically near Lake Canandaigua, for the 2018 Finger Lakes plein air painting festival.

Painting vineyards above Lake Canadaigua

It’s especially beautiful part of the country. They are you’ll find hilly pastoral farmland and many vineyards. A big thing around there is the vineyard tours. Two of the sponsors for the plein air event Was Hazlitts Red Cat Cellars, And the Canandaigua Wine Trail.  I tried a few of the different wines and they’re quite good. I also stopped by the Young Lion Brewery with some friends to try their beer, and it was quite suberb.

Painting in the Sonnenberg Gardens

The first place I painted there was the Sonnenberg Gardens.  This is a beautiful 50 acre New York state park right in the town of Canandaigua. I especially love their Italian Gardens, but there’s several beautiful buildings to look through, green houses, a Japanese garden, and much more to seeIn a parklike setting if you stroll around. Below is a Gallery of the Sonnenberg Gardens:

It was the first time I have been in that area, so I didn’t really know the good places to go and paint. But there were lots of great landscapes from the other artists who knew the area little better.

Painting the Canadaigua courthouse


Painting a nocturne of the famous boathouses on Lake Canadaigua

A funny story happened while I was painting the nocturne painting above at a lakefront park. About 1 o’clock a policeman came by, amazed, and informed me that the park had closed two hours ago. He was very nice about it, and gave me a half hour to finish up.

Fishermen on Lake Canandaigua, 6×6, oil

Despite it being not a very rewarding week for me, I enjoyed doing it, and especially, as always, seeing old friends and making new ones among the painters.

Left to right, Julie Riker, me, and Beth Bathe

Left to right, Julie Riker, me, and Beth Bathe

A nice extra was to finally meet Julie Riker, and Beth Bathe, two artists who had shared articles with me in the March 2018 issue of Plein Air  magazine.

Painting at the vineyards in Nayples, NY.

Painting at the vineyards in Naples, NY.


And below are some images from the reception and sales event, that was held at Sonnenberg Gardens.

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