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A great Minnesota sketch-together! Artists convene at State Fair to create, share work

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Drawings are pinned to a board at the State Fair
Drawings completed by artists are pinned to a board at the Minnesota State Fair. Artists gather at the fair every year to sketch the sights and action there as part of the Great Minnesota State Fair Sketch Out.
Courtesy of Amber Sausen

If you spend a lot of time at the Minnesota State Fair each year, you’ve likely seen a few folks sitting with sketchpads, scribbling or painting as the action moves around them.

There’s a good chance that artist you saw was participating in the Great Minnesota Sketch Out — an annual event that encourages artists of all skill levels to bring their art supplies with them to the fair and capture the sights in their own style.

The event was founded by artist Roz Stendahl in 2009. Her favorite subjects are the birds in the poultry barns. About 40 people joined in on the fun this year, including visiting artists from Seattle and Milwaukee, Stendahl said.

It’s a relaxed affair with artists going off to their favorite parts of the fairgrounds and choosing how they’d like to create. Then, there are scheduled meeting times so that participants can discuss their plans, experience and share their work — adding an element of community and collaboration.

Going forward, organization for the event will be handled by the MetroSketchers Group and anyone interested in joining next year should keep an eye on their Facebook page, Stendahl said.

“All skill levels are always welcome and we look forward to seeing folks in 2020,” she said.