Thursday, June 30, 2016

Oakville – Plein Air June event – “Paint the Town Extraordinaire” 160626

I travelled to the historic downtown Oakville for the last day of “Paint The Town Extraordinaire”.  It was a plein air event put on by the Oakville BIA and Oakville Art Society. The Town of Oakville, home to over 180,000 people, is located 30 kilometers west of downtown Toronto along the shore of Lake Ontario.  I was hoping to meet some local Oakville artists and socialize, but it seemed that I was the only one painting that day.   I felt like a foreigner from out of town who would be painting alone on the main commercial street. But I set my heart on challenging myself.

I was pleasantly surprised by the volume of people up and about mid morning – eating breakfast, jogging, walking their dogs, biking…engaging in life.  It seemed like a very active and vital community.  Many people stopped and said hello and were very curious about what I was doing on the street painting.  My first painting was at a place called The Goldstar Café.  It is one of many cafes on the main street teeming with people while manifesting a rich street life.

After painting on the main street in the mid-day heat, I moved to the waterfront.  It was much cooler and the view from Lakeside Park was spectacular. The many large historical homes that I walked by are a painter’s/sketcher’s dream.   

I painted at the OAKVILLE Museum gardens that sit at a high point along the waterfront and my painting captures a view over a pier that has a lighthouse at the end.  There was a naturally sculpted pine tree in the foreground and the gardens poetically framed the view.  In general, the harbour is wonderfully picturesque.

I was delighted to discover that the Post Office and Thomas House at the museum was also open for visitors.  What a treat to explore.   I toured the old historic buildings and learned a bit about the history of Oakville.  I sat and sketched these two historic buildings that had been relocated and now overlook the lake.

What a lovely day I had. It was a truly an experience “Extraordinaire”.
Thanks for the invitation.
I will visit again soon!


  1. Thanks for this posting Barbara. I liked how through your sketching that you engaged deeply with the place. I am thinking that you may not have as much if you had not 'slowed down' and taken the time to be present. And through your graphic and written posting, I too feel more intimately connected to Oakville.

  2. Love your paintings Barbara!

    One of my goals for this summer is to sketch in a small historic town. You have inspired me to add Oakville to the list of candidates!

    1. I highly recommend the visit to Oakville. They have beautiful Waterfront Park, the Main Street and historic architecture) I drove back along the Lakeshore to Toronto. That in itself was a treat! Cheers and happy painting!

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