Call for Artists: Hamilton Plein Air Festival

Presented by the Hamilton Ontario Plein Air Artists

Plein Air Painters. Photos: Cheryl-Ann Hills

Artist Registration Details for the Hamilton Plein Air Festival

Early Bird Pricing Ends: April 14, 2024
Final Submission Deadline: May 5, 2024

The Hamilton Plein Air Festival is an open competition for artists who love to create art outdoors. We welcome en plein air competitors from across North America to paint, draw or collage the views of Hamilton Ontario. Our unique city is nestled along the Niagara Escarpment. This unique land formation in Ontario stretches almost 900 km from the Niagara River to Tobermory and Manitoulin Island. It rises up in places more than half a kilometre above sea level.

In addition to the exciting nature views Hamilton also features a gritty city ambiance coveted by the film industry for its urban charm and historic buildings. And if that’s not enough to entice the plein air painter, the city also hosts several active ports and harbours along the shores of Lake Ontario. There’s something for every plein air painter in our rustic city.

The Event includes:

  • 3 days of plein air painting in the greater Hamilton area
  • Opportunities to engage with the public as they watch artist’s work.
  • Judging by accomplished plein air artist and gallery owners
  • Day 4: Show and Sale of all artwork will open to the public

Competitor packages include:

  • Event t-shirts for competitors
  • Suggested location maps to find popular landmarks in Hamilton.
  • A list of local eateries, art supply shops, hotels/motels
  • Winners will also be featured on the website until the next competition in 2025.

**Note: The festival is a rain-or-shine event. There are no refunds.**


The Hamilton Plein Air Festival is open to all artists in North America who love creating art en plein air (outdoors). All styles and mediums are accepted up to a maximum size of 24″ x 24″.

Views of Hamilton Ontario. Photos: Cheryl-Ann Hills

Available Awards

Grand Prize:

  • 1st Overall – $1500
  • 2nd Overall – $800
  • 3rd Overall – $250
  • 8 Honorable Mentions: Certificate


  • Best in Nocturn: $200, Best in City Street: $200, Best in Escarpment: $200
  • Honorable Mentions: 3 per category – achievement certificates

Artists will receive a participant package including your Event t-shirt and additional area information at check-in.

Selection Process

  • Applications are accepted March 17 – May 5, 2024. No exceptions.
  • Max number of competitors is 100.

How to Register

  • Visit the Hamilton Plein Air Festival website to read event rules and download the application.
  • Download the Registration form. Do not try to complete the form on the website. We will not receive it.
  • Complete the form on your computer using your PDF reader. Make sure it is signed and dated.
  • Follow the directions on the form to submit the registration form.
  • Return to the website to submit payment.
  • A confirmation email and letter will be sent once both payment and forms are received.
  • Print the confirmation letter and bring it with you when you check-in In-Person during the festival.

Submission Deadline:

Early Bird Pricing Ends: April 14, 2024
Final Submission Deadline: May 5, 2024

Special thanks to the Hamilton Arts Council for their funding support

For additional information or questions, please contact:
Cheryl-Ann Hills – Event Organizer | 289 339 4047

Hamilton Ontario Plein Air Artists
66 Elora Drive, Hamilton
289 339 4047

Facebook @hamontplienair
Instagram @hamontpleinairartists

Accessible painting locations are noted on the website. For more information, visit