Calendar 2020 Publication and Show
Theme: "Boston"
Deadline: July 1st, 2019

Up to 5 paintings can be submitted

We look forward to include paintings from all seasons: Boston in Winter; Boston in the Fall and of course also specifically Boston in Spring!
We also like to include in the calendar an indoor painting, a nocturne painting and a skyline.
And at least one painting should show Bostonians living their daily life or
people working in Boston.

Now is a great time for those summer in the city scenes!

Plein-Air Painting in 2019
May - September 2019

The locations and time will vary each time and will be decided a few days before
the plein-air session and will be announced on the calendar page of this website.

Additional dates on weekdays will still be announced

Drop-ins welcome!
Members are free, non-members $10 each session
Constructive critique at the end if desired

Sat   Jun  15       1pm -3pm    Plein Air Painting in Boston
Sat   Jun 29        1pm - 3pm    Plein Air Painting in Boston

Sat    Jul 13        Time: TBD    Plein Air Painting on North Shore

Sat    Jul 27        Time: TBD    Plein Air Painting on South Shore

Fri   Sep 27         Time: TBD    Plein Air Painting Wellfleet, Cape Cod*

Sat    Sep 28       Time: TBD    Plein Air Painting in Truro, Cape Cod*

Sun   Sep 29       Time: TBD    Plein Air Painting in Provincetown*

2019 NWS Watercolor Retreat
in Truro   
S E P T E M B E R  2 0 1 9

Castle Hill in Truro, Cape Cod,,
offers Plein Air Painting in the spectacular landscape of
the Cape Cod National Seashore.

Watercolor Retreat in Truro, Cape Cod

  Theme: Seascapes and beyond   
.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .

Thursday 9/26 – Sunday 9/29, 2019
at Edgewood Farm in Truro, MA
Our goal is to paint plein-air as much as possible between Truro and Provincetown: landscape, shoreline, harbor scenes, dunes  so much to choose from!

We will suggest to you great painting locations for this weekend and you can explore them on your own or join our plein-air group.

Three nights in a beautiful and newly renovated artist retreat farmhouse, including several kitchens (for preparing your breakfasts (or lunches and dinners; food is not included).

In the evening, we offer small presentations about the area and about painting seascapes and more. This will be our third year organizing this inspiring and invigorating retreat and everyone was enthused about the amazing time we had together at this absolutely wonderful location.

For inclement weather, we have a huge indoor studio available. We will be a small group of max. 8 artists, only members from the Newton Watercolor Society – from beginners to advanced, all are welcome. Self-drive or arrange your own carpool to Truro and back.

                                         3 nights, $475


                               Register here for a 2nd person/room

This was our schedule of Plein-Air Painting In Newton in 2018
May - July 2018

The locations will vary each time and will be decided a few days before the plein-air session and will be announced on the calendar page of this website.
Drop-ins welcome!
Members are free, non-members $10 each session
Constructive critique at the end if desired

         Sat  May 12        1pm - 3pm    Plein Air Painting in Newton

Sat  May 19       10am -2pm     PAINT-OUT (see here)            

Sun   May 27      2pm - 4pm    Plein Air Painting in Newton

Wed   May 30      9am-11am    Plein-Air Painting in Newton

Sat    Jun  9       1pm - 3pm    Plein-Air Painting in Newton

Thu   Jun 14      2pm - 4pm     Plein-Air Painting in Newton

Sat    Jun  24      1pm - 3pm    Plein-Air Painting in Newton

Thu   Jun  28      1pm - 3pm     Plein-Air Painting in Newton

Wed    Jul 11      9am - 11am   Plein-Air Painting in Newton

Thu    Jul 19      10am - noon   Plein-Air Painting in Newton

All weather permitting

Plein Air Painting


One of our goals is to paint outside as a group as much as possible so that we can …  We are always in the process of finding locations for group painting.

To see the current list of our painting locations click on this link: here

Plein Air is a term derived from the French phrase en plein air, which literally means 'in the open air'. It's a familiar concept today, but in the late 1800s when the Impressionists ventured out of their studios into nature to investigate and capture the effects of sunlight and different times of days on a subject, it was quite revolutionary.

A Brief History of Plein Air Painting 

The French phrase "en plein air" means "in the open air" and at the end of the 19th century painting "en plein air" was almost unheard of. The art world of Europe was dominated by the salons and academies and painting methods, materials and subject matter were taught and practiced according to tried and true formulas.

Enter an English painter John Constable. His radical idea was to forget formulas, find the truth in nature and trust your own vision. He created sketches outdoors and then returned to the studio to work them up into full size paintings. Around the same time in the small village of Barbizon, outside Paris, another group of painters, including Francois Millet and Gustave Coubert, began creating field sketches focusing on peasant life and the natural world. This stood in direct contrast to the established art world which demanded subject matter based on antiquity, classical mythology and Biblical scenes. This group known as the Barbizon School were called "realists" by their comtemporaries.

From these roots came a full scale artistic revolution in France in the mid 19th century. Fueled by the new science of optics which had uncovered how the eye actually, physically, registers color, a new style of painting was born. Impressionism. Another new development also spurred this movement on, the invention of metal tubes that could be loaded with paint and taken outdoors. Artist like Edouard Manet, Claude Monet and Auguste Renoir took their easels and new tubes of paint outdoors. They quickly realized that it was not form the eye perceived but LIGHT on a form, and light could be conveyed by color!

So impressionism and consequently plein air painting became about capturing the light and colors of a particular place. Subject matter would be dictated by the weather and the seasons. This new style of painting crossed the Atlantic and landed at the art colony in Old Lyme Connecticut under the leadership of Childe Hassam and other American Impressionists like Willard Metcalf, Matilda Browne and William Chadwick.

Over time other locations with a particularly beautiful quality of light also became artist colonies for plein air painting, Cape Cod, Cos Cob, Rockport. Today the American southwest, Santa Fe and Scottsdale, New England's "Newton" and places like Provance and Tuscany are also centers of modern plein air painting.