Yes, it's a paintout that is virtual! It's online! Two years ago when I was trying to find a paintout group I typed "paintout" on Facebook just for fun. The Virtual Paintout came up. It was created by and is hosted by Bill Guffey. What an inspired concept he had. Google Street View is used "as a resource for traveling the world to find interesting locations and subjects to paint". Each month Bill chooses a city or area for artists to use Google Street View to find a reference view to draw or paint. Artists "walk" around the streets using Google Street View just as they would on a real life paintout. After artists have chosen their view and completed their piece Bill has guidelines to submit it to his blog where he shares all the artwork. http://virtualpaintout.blogspot.com
Artwork from all the previous Virtual Paintouts are still available to check out. Bill also posts the submissions on Facebook.
Bill must have fun selecting the month's location from worldwide options the Google Street View vehicles have covered with their cameras. The first city I "walked" around was Boston and I was overwhelmed. I couldn't find anything I wanted to paint but maybe that was because I hadn't done any actual plein air painting in years. The August 2012 location was Tasmania! There is a place I will never be able to look around in person. This time I found several views and had fun looking around the island. Here is my watercolor of a beach road in Tasmania.
Below is an abstract piece I also painted this month for a fun monthly challenge for a Facebook group I'm in. The theme for August was "Abstract". While looking around the map of Tasmania, I had maps on my mind while I painted this.