SURPRISE VALLEY, Calif. — Julia Connor, artist and poet laureate emeritus of Sacramento, will join Plein Air Painters of America Signature artists Jean LeGassick and Ray Roberts for four days of writing and painting — in the classroom and outdoors at the first Surprise Valley Plein Air Painters Workshop andamp; Conference Oct. 4-7. “Our task, whether we have pencil or brush in hand, is not so much to be accurate. Ours is to lure into being what moves us, what we found to have utmost meaning. Writing works with tone as surely as painting does, and painting works with what is left unsaid as adeptly as the poem,” said Connor.The event includes one day of instruction by LeGassick and Roberts, two days painting in the field, a local studio tour, dinner for three nights, evening programs including a keynote speech Friday night by Connor, and a wrap-up critique session.Surprise Valley, which has been described as a miniature Owens Valley with water, is filled with mature cottonwood and poplar trees, ranches and old barns in northeastern California. There are views of the dramatic Warner Mountains to the west and across a dry lake bed playa to the Nevada ranges to the east; canyons, sage and blooming rabbit brush.“I’m always intrigued by new places,” said Roberts. “Surprise Valley is an undiscovered painters’ paradise.”Visit www.modocforum.org for details and registration information. Contact workshop coordinator Barbara March at bmarch@frontiernet or call 530-279-2099. This innovative event is presented by the Modoc Forum, which also holds the Surprise Valley Writers’ Conference each September.