In this series, we want to highlight previous Paint Annapolis artists who have brought some serious talent and joy to our week-long juried Plein air painting competition!

Paint Annapolis is a week-long, juried plein air painting competition held in June, that brings to Annapolis painters from around the world. For 15 years it has been a premier event, joining artists and patrons of the arts together to share in the vibrancy of outdoor painting. Hundreds of residents and visitors come out to watch the artists explore, in paint, the special colonial architecture, marine atmosphere, and overall energy of Maryland’s capital city.

Catherine Hillis has always been an achiever in the arts. As a youngster, she won awards for her artwork and she acted and modeled in print and television ads, majoring in Theatre at the University of Georgia.   She knew she would always be involved in the arts in some way.

Hillis works both in the studio and outdoors.  During the past few years, the artist has traveled extensively to plein air competitions, fulfilling her love for painting nature and history.  She is drawn to scenes that are often forgotten or neglected and finds the intrinsic beauty in them. Hillis believes that observation is her best teacher and she is known for the effect of light and movement in her work. 

Hillis has won hundreds of awards and honors at competitive shows regionally and nationally and has earned eight Signature Memberships from national watercolor organizations. She competes regularly in international watercolor exhibitions as well as plein air competitions and invitational shows. She served as artist in residence in Dinan, France (2007), and at Hot Springs National Park (2010).

Her watercolor paintings are included in museum, corporate and personal collections and have been published in many venues, including Plein Air Magazine, Watercolor Artist Magazine, American Watercolor Weekly, American Artist Magazine, Splash 12, Splash 14, Splash 18, the Artistic Touch series of water-media books, The Washington Post, the Best of America Watercolor Artists & Artisans, Volume 1 and the Best of Virginia Artists & Artisans 2005

 Please visit for more information regarding galleries, original artwork and classes or email

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