Participating as a Featured Artist in the Door County Plein Air Festival typically involves some sacrifices. To begin with, there’s the long distance travel, shipping of gear, and being away from loved ones. But, when 2017 Featured Artist Nyle Gordon called, I assumed his sacrifice would be too great.
Nyle explained to me that his daughter planned her wedding for the final day of the Festival on Saturday, July 29. The artist’s questions and thinking out loud ensued.
“May I miss the events on Saturday?” he asked. “How late do they go?”
“You really can’t, Nyle,” I said. “It wouldn’t be fair to the other artists.”
“I suppose I could have her move it to Sunday,” he said. “I’ve been hoping to be invited for years and it would be a shame to miss my shot. If an artist has to bow out, are they ever asked back?”
After I assured him that in the event of an emergency, an artist is still considered for future Festivals, the mental gymnastics continued. At this point, I thought the father-of-the bride was going to cancel.
“You know, I told her about me being in the Festival before this was planned,” he said. “I don’t think she was listening to me. I could do really well at this event and it means a lot to me.”
“Well, she’s just going to have to change it.”
I could almost see him shrugging and smiling from his studio in Ethel, Missouri. “This is the Super Bowl of my career,” he said. “You wouldn’t ask the quarterback to skip the game on Super Bowl Sunday.”
Not us. See you in July, Nyle.
We’re looking forward to hosting Nyle and 35 other artists from across the country during the 2017 Door County Plein Air Festival, July 23-29.
Nyle with his winning Quick Paint painting at the 2016 Fairfield (IL) Paint Out. Photo by Jason Gualdoni