PleinAir Salon art competition - Vlad Duchev (Baltimore, MD),
Vlad Duchev (Baltimore, MD), "Together Again," oil, 18 x 24 in.

We’d like to congratulate Vlad Duchev of Baltimore, Maryland for winning Overall First Place in the July 2023 PleinAir Salon, judged by Kevin Macpherson.

“I love painting different subjects, but the landscape is my first and greatest love,” Duchev says. “Instead of glorifying the creation, I concentrate on glorifying the Creator by simply rendering His creation. I love the moments I’m one-on-one with my Creator right before the brush touches the canvas. This is the most precious time for me.

“My painting process is straightforward – I will only start painting if I can see a complete painting in my mind with all the steps from start to finish. Paint it in your mind first – then transfer it to the canvas.”

Vlad Duchev was born in 1965 in the small town of Pokrov (former Ordzhonikidze) in Ukraine. Growing up, he was impressed by the art of Russian-Ukrainian impressionists. At the age of 8, he entered an art school in the small town of Bila-Tserkov and started his journey as an artist to join the Art Academy of Ukraine.

At the age of 14, being under pressure from his musical family, he decided to take a musical path. He studied at the Music College of Zhytomyr, the Music Academy of Kharkiv, and the National Conservatory of Ukraine in Kyiv with the principal in classical performance – double bass. But at the same time, he continued studying painting. In 1994, he moved his family to the United States due to the unstable situation in Ukraine. He resides and works in Baltimore, MD.

About the PleinAir Salon:

In the spirit of the French Salon created by the Academie des Beaux-Arts in Paris, this annual online art competition, with 11 monthly cycles, leading to the annual Salon Grand Prize winners, is designed to stimulate artistic growth through competition. The competition rewards artists with $50,000 in cash prizes and exposure of their work, with the winning painting featured on the cover of PleinAir Magazine.

Winners in each monthly competition may receive recognition and exposure through PleinAir Magazine’s print magazine, e-newsletters, websites, and social media. Winners of each competition will also be entered into the annual competition. The Annual Awards will be presented live at the next Plein Air Convention & Expo.

The next round of the PleinAir Salon has begun so hurry, as this competition ends on the last day of the month. Enter your best art in the PleinAir Salon here.

View more artist and collector profiles here at


  1. Vlad Duchev’s oil painting “Together Again” is simple beautiful; it leaves me speechless and deeply inspired. I could look at it forever and feel the same way. I am glad he and his family are safe in Maryland and I am so sorry for what has been and is happening in his beautiful homeland of Ukraine at the hand of the monster ruling Russia.


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