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M 10-2, T-F 9-5 Pacific Standard Time

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Capitola Art and Cultural Commission
Capitola Plein Air 2024

Capitola Plein Air  

October 21 - 27 2024

Welcome to Capitola Art & Cultural Commission’s 9th annual Capitola Plein Air juried competition, exhibition, and sale!  We are delighted to invite you to apply to paint en plein air all around Capitola October 21 -26 and compete for the blue ribbon on Sunday, October 27th. Open to artists nationwide.


Online submission deadline: Thursday, August 1st.

·         Entry form must be filled out in its entirety.  List sizes up to the nearest inch. Submitted images must not include matting or frame.  Crop the photos to include only the artwork.  Be sure your images are right-side-up.

·         Before uploading your images, make sure they are smaller than 4MB, but at least 1920 pixels on the longest side at 72 dpi.  Images should be in JPEG format, sRGB color space.  Help in photographing your work and properly sizing your images can be found at:  If you need help entering your images or are unable to, please contact or 888-666-1351

·         Please add and to your safe senders list to ensure notifications are received.

·         The entry fee is $50 for 2-3 image submissions.

·         The registration process is juried, and artists work will be reviewed. Space is limited to a maximum of 40 artists. Not all entrants will be invited to attend.

·         Artists will be notified of acceptance by August 12th, 2024.


Judge:  To be determined


The Exhibition will be held at the New Brighton Middle School Performing Arts Auditorium.


Health and safety protocols:  While there are no current required safety protocols in place, we reserve the right to impose any such protocols as circumstance requires. Your entry fee will be refunded in full if this event is canceled as a result of safety protocols. We cannot, however, be responsible for any artist’s personal expenses in the event that the Commission must cancel or change the scope of Capitola Plein Air.


Event amenities:  Capitola Plein Air has developed an impressive reputation for our event amenities during the painting days and the day of the exhibition. These amenities include: mandatory paint day, food, live music, added art activities and an artist only reception.  

Due to resource constraints our marketing is limited.  We will rely on you, as always, to help promote the event to your mailing lists.  We will produce window posters and postcards.


Please read and acknowledge the event rules and instructions.


Rules and Instructions

Welcome to Capitola Art & Cultural Commission’s annual Capitola Plein Air competition, exhibition and sale!  We are delighted to invite you to paint en plein air all around Capitola October 21 – 26 and to compete for a blue ribbon on Sunday, October 27.


1st Place: winning entry will be purchased for $1,800, added to the City’s public art collection, and may be featured in subsequent promotion for the event.

2nd Place: winning entry will be purchased for $1,000, and added to the City’s public art collection.

Honorable Mentions: Ribbon only

People Choice and Artists Choice 


Capitola Plein Air will collect all sales, and be responsible for all transactions, record keeping, and collection of sales tax on your behalf. Commissions will be payable within 30 days after the close of the exhibition.

The commission on sales is 30%, with artists retaining 70% of sale price.

Artists may sell their works, provided they were painted during the course of the event.  After the competition, artists may also display and sell works that they may have created during a previous Capitola Plein Air event.

 A few important rules to note:

· Plein Air works in any medium are welcome in the competition and exhibition/sale.

· You may paint any subject from any location, out of doors, and within Capitola city limits. You may also paint views of Capitola from a distance!  As well as The Forest of Nisene Marks, New Brighton State Park and Pleasure Point/East Cliff areas.

· There is no limit to the size of the work created, provided that, framed, it does not extend beyond the allotted display area. The display area allotted for each artist will be at least one panel measuring 36″x 80.” We hope to provide two panels per artist - if space allows at the current venue.


SCHEDULE and DETAILS (all subject to modification as necessary)


Welcome Table and canvas stamping will be available 8:00- 1:00 pm in the Community Room downstairs at City Hall (420 Capitola Ave.). Long-term parking is behind and above City Hall. We will stamp your blank canvas when you check in, provide with an event name tag and pertinent information. 

Only stamped works created during the event will be accepted in the competition.  Stamped works from prior Capitola Plein Air events can be displayed and sold after the competition.

You may stamp as many blanks as you think you will paint during the week.

 Painting begins!

After 2:00 pm, you may pick up your artist file and have canvases stamped upstairs at City Hall’s main office, during regular business hours 9-5 (closed 12-1).


Paint!  You may have canvases stamped upstairs at City Hall, during business hours 9-5 (closed 12-1) or contact the Event Chair.


4-6 pm Artist Only Reception at the historical Shadowbrook Restaurant.  $10 donation requested. 

SATURDAY, OCTOBER 26 Mandatory Paint Day in Capitola Village

9am-2pm Welcome Table in Esplanade Park.  Check in and Canvas Stamping. Great opportunity to attract attention to our event. Check in even if you don’t need any more canvases stamped. We will ask where you think you might be painting. We will have event information cards available to hand out to people who find you painting and to invite them to the exhibition.  


8:00 – 9:30 am: Artists check in, set up and display works for sale at New Brighton Middle School Performing Arts Auditorium.  Pick up supplies at the Artists Check-In table. After check in - Bring artworks into the Auditorium.  You may hang up to three finished pieces for judging on your designated 36″x 80″ panel(s). 

9:30 – 10:30 am – Artists clear the room for judging.

9:30-10:30 am: Judging

10:30 Artists return for the judging results.

10:30-11:00 Judge will announce results. After judging is complete, you may hang additional works for sale, provided that you do not extend beyond the edges of the display panel(s).

11:00 am: Doors open to the public.  Sales will begin after presentation of the awards.   (First and second place pieces are not available for sale)

3:00 pm: People’s Choice and Artists’ Choice awards presentation.

11:00-4:00 Music, pop up art-making and fine art sales continue. Lunches will be provided to artists to facilitate your continued presence at the event.

4-5 pm: Artists load out unsold works.


All works competing must be signed, framed and wired. No sawtooth hangers, please.

Artists working in oils are encouraged to utilize floater frames if needed; no gallery wrap will be accepted.

The display area allotted to each artist will be at least one 36″x 80” panel. We hope to be able to provide two panels per artist - depending on event layout. Framed works must not extend beyond the edges of the display area.

All works displayed must have been painted during the event. No studio paintings please.

All paintings displayed between 9:30-11 am will be considered part of the competition. They must be completed, framed, signed, and displayed at the panel provided by 9:30 AM on Sunday, October 27.  Any pieces displayed for competition and selected for the first or second prize must be surrendered to the City of Capitola for the purchase prize award. Do not enter any pieces in this competition that you are unwilling to surrender to the City’s art collection.

By participating in the competition, you give your permission for the city to use images of you or your work in promotion of this or subsequent Commission or City events. 


The commission on sales is 30%, with artists retaining 70% of the sale price.

Capitola Plein Air will collect all sales on October 27, and will be responsible for all transactions, record keeping, and collection of sales tax on your behalf. Artist checks will be issued within 30 days of the event.  W9 will be required.

All artists may sell any works painted during the event. Artists may also sell artwork at their painting site during Capitola Plein Air, and such sales will also be subject to the 30% commission. Please be honest about sales made on painting days. Works sold before the Sunday exhibition are not eligible to compete for a prize.

Depending on the event location, we will provide at least one display wall for each artist at the sale, measuring 3′-0″ x 6′-8″ (each panel the size of a screen door). All works displayed at Sunday’s sale must be framed and must not extend beyond the edges of the display area.

All paintings on display must be available for purchase.


While we wish we could provide alternate transportation solutions for artists, at this time we have no shuttles, or carpools arranged for the event. Artists are responsible for all transportation, movement of supplies and artworks, and parking.

No hosted lodging is provided to artists. We know this can be difficult for artists, and understand that you may therefore choose not to register for the event. We will let you know if any hosted lodging does become available. Typically such lodging is first offered to artists traveling the furthest distance.

On exhibition day, plenty of parking is available for the unloading of your art at the School auditorium. Volunteers will be nearby to help out with unloading on exhibition day, but having a helper with you is a good idea.  We will ask for you to move your vehicles offsite after the set up in order to accommodate more visitors to the exhibition. 

 As for parking on painting days:

Capitola has all day parking spaces in the Beach and Village Parking Lot 2 (lower), located behind City Hall at 420 Capitola Avenue.  Access to Beach and Village Parking Lots 1 & 2 (Upper and Lower) is on Capitola Avenue, Bay Avenue and Monterey Avenue.

On Saturdayartists may park with the free parking pass provided. The passes are valid only at the Beach and Village Parking Lots 1&2. They are not valid for any metered parking spacesDo not lose your parking pass; it is not replaceable.

All other times and locations, plan on paying for parking at the pay stations. Vehicles may be cited if they remain in the same space longer than the posted hours, regardless of payment for more time.  Vehicles must be moved to another space to avoid ticketing.

Seasonal residential parking enforcement ceases at the end of September, so free parking will also be available in many neighborhoods surrounding the village (read the signs). Please be respectful of the residents.

The pay stations accept cash, debit cards and credit cards, and operate everyday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. 


Restrooms are available at City Hall and Esplanade Park. 

Capitola Wharf should be reopened by October - and new restrooms available at the entry to the Wharf.


The Capitola Art and Cultural Commission initiates calls for new works of Public Art. They also produces other cultural events, such as the Twilight Concerts, Summer Movies at the Beach, and the Art & Music at the Beach Series. 

More info about the event - as it becomes available will be posted on the City of Capitola’s website. 


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