Santa Paula Times

Pam Shelley’s “Agapanthus” is featured in PAAINT’s “Exploring the Neighborhood” exhibit that includes works by artists in Southern and Northern California.

PAAINT: BCL exhibit ‘Exploring the
Neighborhood’ with plein air artists

October 30, 2015
Santa Paula News

You won’t have to go far to explore various fascinating neighborhoods at the upcoming PAAINT exhibit!

“Exploring the Neighborhood” an exhibition of works by PAAINT (Plein Air Artists In Nature’s Theatre) will be on display through the year’s end at Blanchard Community Library.  

Drawings, paintings and giclees by PAAINT members will be featured on the “Shively Memorial Wall” from November 4 through January 2, 2016.  

Featured artists are Dorothy Orr and Pam Shelley of Santa Paula; Susan Lewis of Ventura; and Melanie Hirdler and Evelyn Ward who live in Trinity County.  

According to Orr, “Although local members of PAAINT have previously exhibited with the northern chapter in Weaverville, this is the first time that some members of both the northern and southern chapters have joined to show their art here in Santa Paula.”

This exhibit, entitled “Exploring the Neighborhood”, will include works that reveal “discoveries that each artist has made while painting close to home. The artists found simple treasures to experience and share as they ventured down the road, around the corner or over the rise.”

This is the ninth featured showing by PAAINT since the group was formed in the summer of 2012.

Orr said, “Our goal was to select artists with individual painting styles, but styles that worked together in exhibit. We want the group to stay small enough for us to be welcome onto private properties, yet large enough to share — and ease — the responsibilities of putting a good exhibit together. We have about 10 exhibiting members, and we are always looking for new energy for our group.”

The creation of PAAINT came on the heels of Orr’s retirement when the longtime college art instructor and acclaimed painter decided to concentrate on her art after an almost 40-year teaching career, including with Ventura Community College.

“Our first exhibit was at Blanchard Community Library,” and since then PAAINT has had shows in Southern and Northern California.

“We’re having a great time,” said Orr especially since the Northern California PAAINT chapter started after the Ventura County group had an exhibit in the Weaverville Main Street Galley in the summer of 2013 and a local artist approached them.

“There was such interest that another group started up there,” that will be participating with the local chapter in the BCL exhibit.

Orr noted, “It’s fun and now we’re in the process of building our membership in both areas…we have a number of people not official members that are joining us on our outings and testing the waters. It’s a fun adventure through this growth process.”

Orr has completely retired not even accepting private students: “I loved instructing but I was ready to do what I taught everyone else to do, paint. So now on a full-time basis I’m pursuing my painting and fulfilling a dream.

“I need to climb hills and haul my gear,” to locations where Orr captures scenes that are the basis of plein air works. 

“I loved when I did, I loved passing on to my students what my mentors taught me. Now it’s my turn.”

Blanchard Community Library is located at 119 North 8th St.

Library hours are Monday, Tuesday and Thursday from noon through 8 p.m., Wednesday 10 a.m. through 6 p.m., and Saturday from 

10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The library is closed Friday and holidays

For additional information, email PAAINT or members of PAAINT at