2021 Plein Air Festival

MARK FEHLMAN DANNY GRIEGO MARGARET LARLHAM SHUANG LI

2021 PLEIN AIR FESTIVAL

July 24–31, 2021

Exhibition August 1–October 10, 2021

Open To Artists Of All Skill Levels From Beginner To Professional

Paint Southern California in the open air in one of only 14 designated California Cultural Districts

Oceanside offers gorgeous coastlines, charming cityscapes, peaceful lagoons, rolling hills with lush flora and fauna, and the historic Mission San Luis Rey, among other visual splendor to capture on canvas or media of your choosing. Plein air painting is a painting completed in the field, on location, and “in the moment.” All skill levels are encouraged. Any artist may participate–they do not need to be members. However, members of OMA’s Artist Alliance group receive a discount on registration rates.

Click here to register online or call (760) 435-3721.


Festival Overview

Check-In And Canvas Stamping

Beginning the week-long celebration of outdoor painting, artists make their first stop at OMA for canvas stamping and to pick up their welcome packet, including a full festival itinerary, tips for how to explore Oceanside, and information showcasing local businesses. 

Paint Out, Workshops, And Artist Talks

Artists at any level of experience are invited to come to the burgeoning coastal city of Oceanside to paint Southern California in the open air. To explore a variety of styles and techniques that draw from the rich traditions of plein air painting, artists will also have the opportunity to add a variety of art workshops and artist talks with featured artists Mark Fehlman, Danny Griego, Margaret Larlham, and Shuang Li.

Quick Paint Challenge

Open to all ages, this fun, high-energy event brings together both artists and spectators for a two-hour burst of creativity highlighting some of Oceanside’s most iconic outdoor locations. With the task of completing a painting in a single sitting, Quick Paint artists are challenged to grab a brush, set up an easel, and paint en plein air for all to see.

Awards Celebration And Art Sale

Celebrate the culmination of OMA’s inaugural Plein Air Festival and the opening of an exhibition of artwork by participants with an awards presentation, silent auction, and highlights from the week. We are making plans for the event to be even more accessible to art lovers near and far!

Juried Exhibition

This will be a rare opportunity to view and collect artworks from prominent plein air painters at pricing that is approachable for collectors at any level.


Registration Information

Registration Dates
  • Opens March 1
  • Ends July 29 at 5:00pm 
Registration Fees

Fees increase on July 1, so register early.

March 1–June 30

Standard $55
OMA Artist Alliance* $45
Student** Free

July 1–29

Standard $75
OMA Artist Alliance* $65
Student** Free 

*OMA Artist Alliance members—your membership must be current. Not a member yet? Click here to join and add Artist Alliance.
**A valid student ID must be presented upon arrival at OMA for festival check-in.

Check-In And Canvas Stamping

All participating artists must check-in and have the surfaces on which they would like to create artwork stamped prior to beginning their artwork in order to participate in the competition (including the surface that will be used for the Quick Paint Challenge, should they wish to participate). Get here early so you have more time to paint!

  • Welcome packs and schedules will be provided at check-in.
  • Artists will be asked to accept the rules and guidelines upon check-in.
   Check-In And Canvas Stamping Hours
  • Saturday–Thursday, July 24–29, 11:00am-5:00pm
Registration Includes
  • Entry of up to two paintings into the awards competition and exhibition jurying
    • Each painting entered into the competition may be listed for sale during the Awards Celebration and Art Sale
    • Artwork accepted in the exhibition will be offered for auction via a virtual platform throughout the exhibition
  • Entry of one artwork into the Quick Paint Challenge
  • Participation in all painting events (ticketed workshops require separate registration)
  • A 25% discount off ticketed festival events—space is limited and many are sure to fill up quickly, so register early for your favorites!
Waived Registration

Limited funds are available to support waived registration for individuals who are experiencing hardship. Individuals interested in requesting fees to be waived must submit an application by June 13, 2021. Waived fees will only apply to festival registration and will not include associated ticketed festival events and programs. Click here to email Vic with any questions regarding waived registration.


Plein Air Festival Schedule

Saturday, July 24

11:00am-5:00pm
Check-in and canvas stamping

All Day
Independent free paint (map of suggested locations)

Sunday, July 25

9:00am-12:30pm
Workshop: Painting at the Harbor with featured artist Mark Fehlman
(ticketed event $90)

11:00am-5:00pm
Check-in and canvas stamping

All Day
Independent free paint (map of suggested locations)

Monday, July 26

9:00am-12:30pm
Workshop: Capturing the Character of Indigenous Plants in Plein Air Painting with featured artist Margaret Larlham
(ticketed event $90)

11:00am-5:00pm
Check-in and canvas stamping

6:30-8:00pm
Paint Out: Sunset Sonatas on the Sand

All Day
Independent free paint (map of suggested locations)

Tuesday, July 27

11:00am-5:00pm
Check-in and canvas stamping

2:00-4:00pm
Paint Out: Quick Paint Challenge and Art Sale

All Day
Independent free paint (map of suggested locations)

Wednesday, July 28

9:00am-12:30pm
Workshop: Exploring Watercolors and Luminous Landscapes with featured artist Shuang Li
(ticketed event $90)

11:00am-5:00pm
Check-in and canvas stamping

6:30-8:00pm
Paint Out: Nocturnal Notes

All Day
Independent free paint (map of suggested locations)

Thursday, July 29

9:00am-12:30pm
Workshop: Painting Urban Landscapes with featured artist Danny Griego
(ticketed event $90)

10:00am-12:00pm
Paint Out: Farmers Market

11:00am-5:00pm
Check-in and canvas stamping

7:00–8:00pm
Smalltalk: Plein Air Painters Roundup, SoCal Edition
(ticketed event $25)

All Day
Independent free paint (map of suggested locations)

Friday, July 30

8:00–10:00am
Final deadline to submit artwork.
A specific time window will be assigned in each artist’s welcome pack.

7:00–8:00pm
Lecture: Painting En Plein Air With Jean Stern
(ticketed event $25)

Saturday, July 31

Awards Celebration

August 1-October 10

Juried Exhibition

Contact Katie Dolgov with any questions. 


Painting Events

In addition to having the opportunity for all-day independent free painting throughout the festival, there are a number of scheduled panting events included with registration, as well as ticketed workshops with the festival’s featured artists.

july, 2021

sun25jul9:00 am12:30 pmWorkshop: Painting At The HarborWith Plein Air Festival Featured Artist Mark Fehlman9:00 am - 12:30 pm

mon26jul9:00 am12:30 pmWorkshop: Capturing The Character Of Indigenous Plants In Plein Air PaintingWith Plein Air Festival Featured Artist Margaret Larlham9:00 am - 12:30 pm

mon26jul6:30 pm8:00 pmPaint Out: Sunset Sonatas On The Strand 2021 Plein Air Festival6:30 pm - 8:00 pm

tue27jul2:00 pm4:00 pmPaint Out: Quick Paint Challenge And Art Sale2021 Plein Air Festival2:00 pm - 4:00 pm

wed28jul9:00 am12:30 pmWorkshop: Exploring Watercolors And Luminous LandscapesWith Plein Air Festival Featured Artist Shuang Li9:00 am - 12:30 pm

wed28jul6:30 pm8:00 pmPaint Out: Nocturnal Notes2021 Plein Air Festival6:30 pm - 8:00 pm

thu29jul9:00 am12:30 pmWorkshop: Painting Urban LandscapesWith Plein Air Festival Featured Artist Danny Griego9:00 am - 12:30 pm

thu29jul10:00 am12:00 pmPaint Out: Farmers Market2021 Plein Air Festival10:00 am - 12:00 pm

Download all events as ICS file


Ticketed Events

Plein Air Festival registrants receive 25% off registration for these ticketed programs as well as early access to sign up through April 30 before they open up to the general public on May 1. Space is limited, so register early for your favorites. Artists must bring all supplies necessary to participate in these workshops.

july, 2021

sun25jul9:00 am12:30 pmWorkshop: Painting At The HarborWith Plein Air Festival Featured Artist Mark Fehlman9:00 am - 12:30 pm

mon26jul9:00 am12:30 pmWorkshop: Capturing The Character Of Indigenous Plants In Plein Air PaintingWith Plein Air Festival Featured Artist Margaret Larlham9:00 am - 12:30 pm

wed28jul9:00 am12:30 pmWorkshop: Exploring Watercolors And Luminous LandscapesWith Plein Air Festival Featured Artist Shuang Li9:00 am - 12:30 pm

thu29jul9:00 am12:30 pmWorkshop: Painting Urban LandscapesWith Plein Air Festival Featured Artist Danny Griego9:00 am - 12:30 pm

thu29jul7:00 pm8:00 pmSmallTalk: Plein Air Painters Roundup, SoCal EditionWith Plein Air Festival Featured Artists7:00 pm - 8:00 pm

fri30jul7:00 pm8:00 pmLecture: Painting En Plein Air With Jean SternWith Plein Air Festival Juror Jean Stern7:00 pm - 8:00 pm

Download all events as ICS file



Art Sales

All artwork produced during the festival may be sold throughout the week of the festival, if the artist chooses to mark the artwork for sale. OMA will retain 50% of the artwork sale price (plus all applicable sales tax). 

There will be many official opportunities for artists to sell their work:

  • Artwork selected for the exhibition will be included on an online auction platform. The auction will open during the Awards Celebration and Art Sale on July 31 and close at the end of the exhibition on October 10.
  • Artwork submitted for jurying that is not selected for the exhibition will be for sale at the museum on July 31, during the Awards Celebration and Art Sale.
  • Artwork produced as part of the Quick Paint Challenge will be on view in OMA's lobby and for sale through July 31, if the artist chooses to bring their Quick Paint artwork to the museum for inclusion in this sale.
  • A staff member with a mobile device will be present to process sales at all ticketed festival events and scheduled painting events. 

Additionally, artists may sell any work they create "off the easel" during independent free painting. However, if an OMA staff person is not present to assist with this transaction, we ask that you kindly follow the honor system and make a donation of 50% of the proceeds of the sale to the museum.

If artwork for sale on OMA premises (created during the Quick Paint Challenge, submitted for jurying, or as part of the exhibition) does not sell, it must be picked up by the artist at the end of the sales opportunity (on July 31 after the Awards Celebration and Art Sale, or at the end of the exhibition). If the artist is no longer in the area, they will be responsible for shipping fees. Any artwork remaining at OMA more than 90 days after the close of the art sale or auction it was a part of will be considered an unrestricted donation to the museum.

OMA will aim to disburse all artist commissions earned during the festival within the month of August. Commissions for sales from the exhibition will be disbursed in October.

California state sales tax of 8.25% will be added to all purchases at checkout.


Awards

$2,500 Best in Show, judged by Jean Stern
Includes a half-page ad in Southwest Art magazine valued at $1,230 and guaranteed inclusion in the 2021 Plein Air Festival juried exhibition

$300 Second Place, judged by Scott W. Prior
Guaranteed inclusion in the 2021 Plein Air Festival juried exhibition

$200 Third Place, judged by Maria Mingalone
Guaranteed inclusion in the 2021 Plein Air Festival juried exhibition

$300 Chris Clevering Best of Student Submissions
Guaranteed inclusion in the 2021 Plein Air Festival juried exhibition

OMA Museum Award For Best Alternative Approach
Artist will receive an OMA Patron level membership, further awards to be announced.

Royal Talens Award ($150 in value)
Artist will receive a Rembrandt Oil Colour Basic Set, Roc Paper Block 300g Canvas Grain 24cm x 32cm, and Rembrandt Soft Pastel 10 Half Stick Micro Set Southwest Desert Palette.

People’s Choice Award
Details to be announced.

Honorable Mentions
Guaranteed inclusion in the 2021 Plein Air Festival juried exhibition.


Judging will be based on the artist’s mastery of the medium, quality of composition, and the use of perspective and color. In addition to outstanding ability in those areas, the artwork is assessed on intangible qualities such as its meaning, appeal, beauty, and the overall impact and expressiveness of the work.

All awards, with the exception of the People’s Choice award, will be announced at the Awards Celebration and Art Sale taking place at OMA on Saturday, July 31. The People’s Choice award will be announced after the close of the exhibition to the public, October 10, 2021.

Additional awards are in development. Please check back regularly for updated information.

Many thanks to our awards sponsors:
Deena Altman
Royal Talens
Southwest Art magazine
Chris Clevering


Festival Rules And Guidelines

  • Artwork in any media is allowed—non-traditional is encouraged!
    Contact Katie Dolgov at
    OMA to discuss your non-traditional submissions (media other than painting, drawing, or sculpture).
  • At least 80% of the artwork must be completed out of doors. If there is any concern that a larger percentage of your artwork was completed in the studio, you will be asked to provide progression snapshots of your work being completed en plein air.
  • Artwork may be in any style (Impressionism, Realism, Abstract, etc.).
  • There is no limit to the number of surfaces you may have stamped.
  • Artists may only choose two works to submit for awards and jurying.
  • Every artist will receive two stickers in their welcome pack to accompany their artworks for submission. Carefully print the artwork title and price on the label for each piece submitted. These will be used as the wall labels, so confirm all information is legible.
  • Artists may sign the front or the back of their artwork.
  • Artists must wear identifying badges while painting. Badges will be provided in your welcome pack.
  • There is no defined painting area. However, at least one artwork must be painted in Oceanside. (View a map of suggested painting locations here.)
  • 2D work is required to be framed and ready to hang when it is delivered to the museum.
  • Maximum 2D size: 24" x 36" not including frame.
  • Maximum 3D size: 24" x 24" x 24".
  • Artists are encouraged to create small works (under 10" on each side), which are often collector favorites.
  • The sale price should take into account a 50% commission to OMA.
  • Sales tax of 8.25% will be added to all art sales.
  • Artwork does not need to be marked for sale, NFS is allowed.
  • It is suggested that you bring all the supplies and frames that you will need.

Quick Paint Challenge Entry Information And Requirements (subject to change)

Join us for the Quick Paint Challenge, a timed open-air painting event open to all festival registrants. Quick Paint participants will set up within a designated area with a stamped blank canvas and their supplies. Painting will start at the sound of the first horn. When the second horn sounds, brushes must be placed down. The finished creation may be sold off the easel (see the Art Sales tab), submitted onsite to OMA staff for further sales opportunities, or packed up as a personal keepsake. Artwork submitted to OMA staff must be framed.

  • The Quick Paint Challenge will be held on Tuesday, July 27, 2:00-4:00pm at a location to be determined.
  • Any artist who has registered for the festival is welcome to participate in this event. The public will be invited to observe, but walk-on participation is prohibited.
  • To be valid for the Quick Paint Challenge, all canvases must be stamped prior to the beginning of the event. Canvas stamping will be available onsite at OMA July 24–29, 11:00am–5:00pm.
  • Artists will have two hours to paint during the Quick Paint Challenge.
  • All artwork created during the event may be available for sale at OMA throughout the week of the festival, if the artist chooses to mark the artwork for sale.
  • If an artwork does not sell during the week and the artist would like to have it returned to them, they will be responsible for picking it up from the museum or paying the shipping fees.

Terms And Conditions

By registering, artists acknowledge and authorize the use of photos taken throughout the event, which may include artists and their artwork, for promotional use online and in printed materials for future events.

Artists acknowledge and agree that Oceanside Museum of Art will retain 50% of the sale price of individual art sales generated during the event. 


Frequently Asked Questions 

Can I participate in plein air workshops and attend lectures even if I am not registered for the festival?

Yes, anyone can participate in OMA's programs. Festival registrants receive a 25% discount on ticketed workshops, artist talks, and lectures. Workshop participation is limited and available on a first-come, first-served basis.

If my artwork is chosen for the exhibition, does it need to stay in the exhibition if it sells? 

Yes, all artwork chosen for the exhibition must remain at the museum until the exhibition closes on October 10.

Can I get the surface on which I will create art stamped before the competition starts? 

No. Stamping begins at 11:00am on July 24, 2021.

Can I get more surfaces on which I will create art stamped after I’ve checked in?

There is no limit to the number of surfaces you may have stamped. Surfaces may be stamped July 24–29, 11:00am-5:00pm.

Are there limitations on where I may paint?

There is no defined painting area. However, at least one artwork must be painted in Oceanside. (View a map of suggested painting locations here.)

How do I get my artwork back at the end of the exhibition?

Artwork may be picked up on Thursday, October 14 and Friday, October 15 from the museum. Shipping can be arranged for artists who do not live within driving distance of the museum. If artwork sells from the exhibition, the buyer will be responsible for arranging transportation. Further details for artwork return will be shared with exhibiting artists within the weeks after the exhibition opens. Dates are subject to change.

May I sign my artwork?

Yes, you may sign your artwork on the front or back.

Is there an age restriction to participate?

All ages are welcome and encouraged.

I need to cancel my registration for the festival or a program.  May I have a refund?

Refunds are not available for the registration fees or program fees associated with this festival. If you are unable to attend the festival or program you registered for, the fees will become a tax-deductible donation to the museum.

What level of student can apply? 

High school or college students may participate. Students must show a valid photo ID for the spring, summer, or fall 2021 terms to qualify for free registration.

What kind of student ID will be accepted for free registration?  

Students will need to present a valid high school or college ID for the Spring, Summer, or Fall 2021 term when they check-in for the festival at OMA.

What if I have a question that is not answered here?

Click here to email Katie Dolgov with any further questions.


Festival Featured Artists And Jurors



Mark Fehlman, Featured Artist

“I love to paint from the life that surrounds me. I paint in an impressionistic style, marked by energetic brushwork, and use thick and thin layers of paint, patterns of light and dark, and a rich palette of colors to capture the moment.

For 30 years, I practiced as a successful architect—half of those years were as a design partner with Fehlman LaBarre Architects. Thanks to my business partner, Mike LaBarre, I was able to leave architecture and pursue my passion, in a second career, as a fine artist.

When I began to pursue painting, I sought out the best teachers. Each has been a tremendous inspiration to me. They include Lela Harty, John Asaro, Ray Roberts, Brian Blood, Ron Hicks, Mark Daley, Kim English, and Jeff Watts. I have been painting for about 15 years, and have made it my career for over 10 years. I paint full time in my studio at my home in the Mission Hills District of San Diego, and travel extensively to capture images throughout the world.” 

—Mark Fehlman

Click here to view Mark Fehlman’s resume.

Danny Griego, Featured Artist

Hailing from Colorado, Danny Griego received his BA in theatrical scene design and scenic art at the University of Northern Colorado. With over 20 years of experience in professional theater as a charge scenic artist, he’s helped many designers and directors realize their vision by implementing a variety of painted and sculpted elements for hundreds of productions. Many of the shows he has worked on have even graced Broadway stages. His interest in art has led him to a life of plein air and studio landscape painting. Though he paints most anything in front of him, Griego finds true inspiration in cityscape and urban themes–where metal, wood, and concrete meet nature. 

Griego has won awards at the Maui Plein Air Invitational, Telluride Plein Air Festival, Borrego Springs Plein Air Invitational, En Plein Air Texas, Paint San Clemente Plein Air Festival, and the Randy Higbee Gallery. Online contest awards include the Bold Brush Art Competition, Art Muse Contest, and the 2020 Richeson Casein Competition. He is an Artist Member of the California Art Club and his works have appeared in several California Art Club Gold Medal Exhibitions. He has also been featured in Southwest Art magazine and Plein Air Magazine. Griego currently lives in San Diego and is employed at University of California, San Diego.

Click here to view Danny Griego’s resume.
 

Margaret Larlham, Featured Artist

Margaret Larlham’s pastel work has garnered national and international attention. She is a 

signature artist of the Pastel Society of America and is a designated Masters’ Circle pastelist of the International Association of Pastel Societies.

A multi-disciplinary artist, her career spanned phases of intense exploration of dance and theatre while constantly practicing as a painter. A professor of theatre first at the University of Natal in South Africa and later at San Diego State University supported her growth as an artist and the view that boundaries between the arts are shifting and blurred. A deep connection to nature, particularly wilderness terrain, sustains her. 

Her paintings have garnered many awards in juried pastel shows in the U.S. In 2020, her work was honored internationally by awards at both The Pastel Exhibition at the Mall Galleries in London and at ASPAS Bienal Internacional de Pintura Al Pastel in Oviedo, Spain. 

Plein air and direct painting remain critically important, rewarding, and transformative to her process. The festival invitationals in Berlin, Borrego Springs, Sedona, and Oceanside have been an enjoyable highlight.

Click here to view Margaret Larlham’s resume.

Shuang Li, Featured Artist

Born, raised, and classically trained in China, Shuang Li received her BA degree in graphic design and MA degree in art history. After moving to the United States, she then received her MFA from the Department of Art, University of Oregon in 1991. 

Following the traditional “en plein air” Impressionism approach, Li paints watercolor both on location and in her studio, portraying the extraordinary variety of life with her unique perspective. With masterful classic and contemporary techniques, she recreates nature’s beauty in her paintings, captures moods and moments, light and colors with her singular poetic visual expression. 

A signature member of National Watercolor Society, American Impressionist Society, San Diego Watercolor Society, Watercolor West, LPAPA, and an elected artist member of California Art Club, Li’s watercolor paintings have long been favored by collectors and regularly exhibited in national and international galleries and group shows, with many honorable awards. 

With her extensive teaching background, Li has been regularly invited by art organizations for her popular plein air painting demonstrations, art workshops, and classes. She  has frequently served as an invited juror for art competitions and art exhibitions. 

Click here to view Shuan Li’s resume.

Scott W. Prior, Juror

Scott W. Prior is an award-winning oil painter and Southern California native. He received his BFA from the Academy of Art University in San Francisco where he studied under the exceptional artists Craig Nelson, Bill Maughan, and Hui Han Lui. During his time at the Academy of Art, Prior established his skills in design, drawing, and painting, giving him a solid foundation with which to develop his own unique artistic style. He draws inspiration from the beauty in ordinary, everyday scenes.

Prior is a Signature Member of the California Art Club and a Signature Member of the Laguna Plein Air Painters Association. He has exhibited in national shows, juried competitions, and invitational events across the country, including the California Art Club’s Annual Gold Medal Exhibition at the Pasadena Museum of California Art, exhibitions at the Frederick Weisman Museum of Art, the Academy Art Museum in Easton, Maryland, and in the prestigious Oil Painters of America National Show. Recently, his painting Market Street Hustle was acquired by the Hilbert Museum in Orange, California.

Click here to view Scott W. Prior’s resume.

Jean Stern, Juror

A recognized authority on California Impressionism, art historian Jean Stern has extensive experience in the field as an author, curator, lecturer, and teacher. He was the founding director of The Irvine Museum from its inception in April, 1992 until his retirement in 2020. As director, Stern worked to establish a national presence for California Impressionism through a noteworthy series of books, exhibitions, lectures, articles, and video documentaries. In his career, he has presented over 250 lectures and judged and juried more than 100 local, national, and international art competitions. He has authored, edited, or contributed to over 30 books on California art.

Stern has presented tours and lectures on California Art in numerous museums including the International Cultural Center, Krakow, Poland; Mona Bismarck Foundation in Paris, France; El Centro Cultural del Conde Duque, Madrid, Spain; National Academy Museum in New York; Terra Museum in Chicago; San Diego Museum of Art; Gilcrease Museum in Tulsa, Oklahoma; Gibbes Museum in Charleston; Brigham Young University Museum; Autry National Western Heritage Center; the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum and many others. He appears in Impressions of California, a 1996 PBS documentary video series on art in California, and on Plein Air: Painting the American Landscape, a 2007 PBS documentary.

He was a consultant to the Fleischer Museum in Scottsdale, Arizona, and is an adviser to the Hilbert Museum of California Art at Chapman University, in Orange, California.  He currently serves on the board of the California Art Club and is a board adviser to the Laguna Plein Air Painters Association. Since its inception in 2012, he has presented lectures in every annual Plein Air Convention, organized by Plein Air Magazine.

In 2017, Stern received the prestigious Chevalier of the Order of Arts and Letters from the French Ministry of Culture. He has also been presented with three Lifetime Achievement Awards—Laguna Plein Air Painters Association in 2013, Plein Air Painters of America in 2014, and Plein Air Magazine in 2014.

Featured Artists

Mark Fehlman
Danny Griego
Margaret Larlham
Shuang Li

Exhibition Jurors
And Awards Judges

Scott W. Prior and Jean Stern with OMA executive director Maria Mingalone


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For More Information

More details will be published soon. For urgent inquiries, click here to email Katie Dolgov.

Check back often for any adjustments due to COVID-related restrictions.