Our jury panel of artists and art experts select artists who have demonstrated work fitting to participate in the Professional Artist category for the Plein Air painting and quick draw competition.

John Copley

Ypsilanti, Michigan

John Copley was born and raised in Ann Arbor Michigan, attended Ann Arbor Public schools and the University of Michigan school of Art and Design 1965 – 1969 where he earned a BFA. He apprenticed as a scenic artist during summer breaks learning to paint dye backdrops for theatrical productions 1964 – 1968. In 1972, with partner Zeke Mallory, opened a graphic arts studio named Crow Quill Graphics, creating logos, signs, illustrations and related graphic work until 1984. He also worked with the Housing Design Group of the U of M designing and painting murals for several locations throughout campus. In 1984 he resumed working as a scenic artist designing and painting backdrops and displays for 17 years. He retired in 2001 and is now a studio painter and a member of the Chelsea Painters. His work can be viewed at johnacopley.com.

Greg LaRock

Orange, California

A signature member of LPAPA, AIS and ASMA, Greg LaRock has won numerous awards for his painting excellence including Artist Choice at Sonoma Plein Air, the Maui Plein Air Painting Invitational and Florida’s Forgotten Coast Invitational, first place at Door County Plein Air Invitational, the grand prize at Easton, Maryland and Best of Show at Los Gatos Plein Air Competition.

He was also awarded the Callaway Gardens Plein Air Purchase Prize in Georgia. Greg has been juried into four Oil Painters of America national shows, an 11 year exhibitor at the Festival of Arts in Laguna and invited 11 times to LPAPA’s annual Plein Air Invitational.

He has also been profiled in Plein Air Magazine with an article on “Ideas for Better Paintings”, featured in Southwest Art’s“Artist to Watch”column and included in a Jack Riches on Fine Art Series book“Plein Air New Mexico.” A sought-after instructor for workshops, he resides with his wife in Orange, California.

Autumn-Grace Dougherty

Ann Arbor, Michigan

Autumn-Grace Dougherty was born in Boone, North Carolina, and received her Masters in Fine Art in 2013 from the School of Visual Arts in New York City. She also
holds an AAS in Fashion Design with honors from Parsons the New School for Design and a BFA in Studio Art with highest honors from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She studied at the Art Students League of New York where she was awarded the Richard Lahey and Carlotta Gonzales Lahey Merit Scholarship. Dougherty has interned with the Textile Arts Center in New York City and has collaborated with Guatemalan artisan weavers through a design initiative sponsored by CARE international. She was awarded an artist residency at Vermont Studio Center in 2013.

Her work has been included in group shows at Parenthesis Art Space and Interstate Gallery in Brooklyn, NY, as well as Westside Gallery and Art Connects in New York City. Since moving to Michigan in 2015, her work has been shown in a solos show at the Ann Arbor City Club, the Shiawassee Art Center, the Dennos Museum of Art, and the University of Michigan Power Center. She participated in the 2017 Ann Arbor Art Fair and recently exhibited artwork at the Ann Arbor Art Center in the 95th Annual AllMedia Juried Art Exhibition. Her work is currently featured in the exhibition “[under]” curated by Jeanne Bieri, opening May 23th at The Scarab Club in Detroit, Michigan.
Dougherty lives and works in Ann Arbor, Michigan.