The Oceanside Plein Air Festival is a biennial event hosted by the Oceanside Museum of Art where artists of all ages and skill level come to Oceanside to transform the place that I love into their own perspective. For almost a week every epic spot in Oceanside has an easel in front of a dutiful creator with a vision. I love this week. It culminates with a showcase at the museum and a few days later at their annex gallery down the street at the Seabird. Today’s event involved music, dancing and the Member’s Only Car Club set up alongside the museum and St Mary Star of the Sea (built in 1927) in the background.
Plein air didn’t start in Oceanside, but in France in the early 1800s. Plein air can be loosely translated to ‘outdoors’. The style of painting outdoors led to impressionism, popularized by portable paint tubes. I can’t think of a better place to paint in plein air than Oceanside.