Landscape artists from around the mid-Atlantic region gathered in Historic Ellicott City from July 10–12 to capture the old mill town’s many charms while competing for cash prizes during the sixth annual Paint It! Ellicott City plein air paint-out.

A reception at the Howard County Arts Council (HCAC) on July 13 featured the premiere of an exhibit showcasing the work of 25 juried artists; a one-night showing of work completed by non-juried participants in the Open Paint-Out; and the presentation of more than $6,000 in awards to the artists. Maryland First Lady Yumi Hogan and Monica Rutherford, wife of Lt. Gov. Boyd Rutherford, were in attendance and assisted in the presentation of the awards.

The top two prizes, the $1,000 Gino Awards, named in honor of Ellicott City artist Gino Manelli (1915–2010), were presented to Michael Bare for “The Presence of the Past” and Alexander Wissel for “Journey From Junk.”

Awards juror Gary Pendleton, author of 100 Plein Air Painters of the Mid-Atlantic, presented the following juror awards:

  • 1st Place: Lida Stifel, “The Painter”
  • 2nd place: Joanne Bare, “10:10 to Ellicott City”
  • 3rd place: Michael Kotarba, “Old B&O Station”
  • 4th place: Joanna Barnum, “Waking Up”
  • Honorable Mentions: Lissa Abrams, “Church on Church”; Ann Jagielski Crostic, “On Top of the Hill”; David Diaz, “Early Morn, Bottom of Main”; Maria Marino, “Enchanting Woods”; and Steve Stannard, “Steve, Walt & Dennis.”
  • Howard County Blossoms of Hope’s Award for Best Depiction of Nature: Chrissy Pahucki, “Water Under the Bridge.”
  • Steve Stannard, Julie Hunko and The Salient Group’s awards for Best Urban Scene went to Maria Marino for “Enchanting Woods” and Alexander Wissel for “Journey From Junk.”

Awards also were presented to the Open Paint Artist:

  • Howard County Tourism Director’s Choice Award: Pamela Betts, “By the River”
  • Howard County Arts Council Director’s Choice Award: Debra Moffitt, “Bon Anniversaire Tersiguel’s”
  • Director’s Choice Honorable Mention Awards: Joyce Blair, “St. John’s Rectory” and Jane Knighton, “Window Shopping at Yates”
  • Director’s Choice Kids’ Honorable Mention Award: Cora Pahucki, “The Steeple”

This year featured Paint It! Ellicott City’s first quick draw competition, Paint Down Main, presented by Mat About You Gallery & Framing and the Ellicott City Partnership. Thirty-four artists painted in a limited area of Main Street for two hours on Saturday morning and the judges chose three award winners:

  • 1st place: Maria Marino
  • 2nd place: Joanna Barnum
  • 3rd place: Tara Will

The exhibit featuring the juried artists’ work remains on display at the HCAC through Aug. 21. Artwork created during the Open Paint-Out is on view at the Howard County Tourism Welcome Center through Aug. 22.

Paint It! Ellicott City is presented by the HCAC, Howard County Tourism & Promotion, Mat About You Gallery & Framing, Ellicott City Partnership and the Howard County Public School System. For more information on this and other HCAC programs, visit