creative research gallery and drawing center
a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization



The Plein Air Atelier

Every Saturday, 9am-12pm

Another Weekly Breath of Fresh Air (literally) with Manifest Drawing Center!

This is an ongoing weekly offering. You can start your six-week session on any open Saturday!


Led by a rotating selection of some of our region’s greatest landscape instructors:

August 22–September 12: Brad Davis, Manifest Drawing Center’s newest Resident Instructor

September 19–October 10: Ron Prigat, Former Manifest Artist-in-Residence



Throughout history, drawing and painting outdoors, or en plein air, has allowed artists the valuable occasion to embrace one of visual art’s most fundamental challenges—simplifying the complexities of the world into a singular pictorial moment. Regardless of an artist’s cultural background or the character of their environmental subject—from the most unbridled forests to the most intricately designed industrial complex—plein air work requires an appreciation of context and one’s visual priorities that can surely benefit all makers.

With these benefits in mind, Manifest Drawing Center is excited to offer this brand-new, weekly atelier offering to our region’s artistic community, focusing on individualized instruction and the continued exploration of plein air drawing and painting!

As with most atelier-style programs, The Plein Air Atelier will present less generalized group instruction in favor of more independent, problem-based development in a low-pressure, supportive communal setting. At Manifest, we know that dedicated practice is key to growth and the achievement of skill. Therefore, this atelier-style offering is intended for those committed to continuing their search and discipline at their own pace.

Participants of The Plein Air Atelier will enjoy learning from a rotation of some of our region’s best landscape artists, with a new instructor introduced every four weeks.

Level of Study

The Plein Air Atelier is geared toward participants at any stage in their drawing or painting education with some exposure to the specific subject-focused topic and with basic knowledge of observational drawing. In this atelier setting, participants will have self-directed opportunities to test out techniques and tools of their own choosing while receiving feedback in a supportive, outdoor classroom environment. Whether your artistic goals are for pleasure or profession, we believe that anyone can learn to creatively engage with landscapes, both natural and manmade, and in doing so, learn to appreciate the world more deeply.



$150 (covers 6 consecutive week*, 3 hours each week)

* One makeup session may be added to the end of a 6-week block to make up for one absence


Every Saturday, 9am-12pm
Ongoing, weekly 6-week overlapping blocks. Sessions will be removed from this list when all seats are full. Session dates further in the future will be added several weeks out.

** Spaces are limited. Early registration is recommended.

Session: August 22 – September 26
Session: August 29 – October 3
Session: September 5 – October 10
Session: September 12 – October 17
Session: September 19 – October 24
Session: September 26 – October 31
Session: October 3 – November 7
Session: October 10 – November 14
Session: October 17 – November 21
Session: October 24 – November 28

Sessions are limited to 15 participants max. Enrollment can begin on any scheduled Saturday*, and will continue for 6 weeks.**

*see registration for details and limitations.


Class Size

Minimum: 4

Limit: 15    

Initial, Suggested Materials List:

  • Sketchbook (something handheld that you’re comfortable carrying everywhere)
  • Graphite pencils (HB, 2B) 
  • One Sheet of 100 Grit Sandpaper             
  • Kneaded Eraser
  • Supplies of your choice that relate to your practice, including but not limited to colored pencils, pastels, markers, gouache, oil paint, etc.
  • Paper, canvas, panel, or other appropriate supports
  • Masking Tape
  • Cup for Water 
  • Bottles of Water (One for drinking, one for cleaning)
  • Easel and 9X12” Wooden Board or Cardboard (Note: If You Don’t Have a Plein Air Easel You Could Get Away with Using a Stiff, Thick Piece of Wood or Paper Board)
  • Folding Chair (Portable, Like A Camp Chair)
  • Hat to Protect from the Sun
  • Paper Towels

These materials are offered only as a starting point. Students are welcome to vary their tools as often as they choose. Some instructors may encourage the exploration of specific materials in their demonstrations/discussions, and registered participants will be notified about suggested materials as soon as possible in advance.




Most meetings of The Plein Air Atelier will be held at Spring Grove Cemetery (4521 Spring Grove Avenue, Cincinnati, Ohio, 45232), specifically Cedar Lake (enter Spring Grove, go under the stone bridge and straight; Cedar Lake is on your right. Note that all four of the wheels of your vehicle must be on the pavement. No part of your car can be on the grass.)


Weekly meetings will take place regardless of most weather. Alternate meeting sites (such as those that might permit drawing/painting on rainy days) may be determined at the discretion of the instructor and will be sent to all registered participants as soon as possible, with Manifest Drawing Center’s intention to notify students at least two days in advance. Any cancellation of a week’s meeting due to dangerous weather conditions will be announced via a group email as soon as possible, again with our intention of offering at least a two-day notice. All participants will have their 6-week block extended by an additional week should a meeting be cancelled.



Ellina Chetverikova


Ron Prigat



Brad Davis



Brad Davis




About the Instructors

To expose participants to a wide range of landscape drawing and painting practices, The Plein Air Atelier will rotate instructors every 4 weeks.

The instructor for the weeks between August 22 and September 12 will be Brad Davis.

Brad Davis is a painter from Cincinnati, Ohio. He earned his BFA from the Art Academy of Cincinnati in 2016, and his MFA from the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts in 2019. His paintings are typically centered around the urban environment and seek to transform its banality through careful and personal reconstruction. In addition to teaching at Manifest Drawing Center, Davis also teaches at the University of Cincinnati’s College of Design, Art, Architecture, and Planning (DAAP). Davis’ work has been exhibited nationally and was included in the 2018 XL Catlin Art Prize traveling show. Most recently he has been shown at the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam. His paintings are in the permanent collections of the Union League of Philadelphia and Capitol One Bank.

This space will be updated regularly to introduce upcoming instructors, so don’t forget to check back regularly!

Map to NEW Walnut Hills Studios   |   Studio Calendar    |   Darkroom Calendar



Manifest's 17th season is funded in part by a grant from the Charles Moerlein Foundation, Fifth Third Bank, Trustee. This season's programming is also supported by an impact grant from ArtsWave, by a sustainability grant from the Ohio Arts Council, and through the generous contributions of individual supporters who care deeply about the visual arts.

current gallery hours:

tues-fri 12-2pm & 5-7pm, sat noon-5pm
(or by appointment)
view calendar

closed Sun and Mon

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2727 woodburn avenue
cincinnati, ohio 45206

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656 E. McMillan St.
cincinnati, ohio 45206



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