Oil paintings created on San Diego train ride!

Travelling by a train is like moving through a dream. The window beside your seat produces ever-changing visions. Glimpses of the world blink past, one after another. Your eyes are subject to a series of momentary impressions.

It can be hard to capture good photographs when riding the train up the coast from San Diego. You’re moving, there’s a dusty window and reflections to deal with, and of course there’s the critical matter of timing. When I snapped photos yesterday during my Coaster train ride from San Diego to Encinitas, most of the images turned out badly blurred and poorly framed.

So I decided to use the Oilify filter of GIMP’s graphics software to transform the photos of my journey into a series of dreamlike oil paintings!

All aboard! We’re about to leave downtown’s Santa Fe Depot . . .

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Sea life mosaics at Solana Beach bus station!

Small sea creatures made of ceramic swim about a tile mosaic bench at a bus station in Solana Beach.
Small sea creatures made of ceramic swim about a tile mosaic bench at a bus station in Solana Beach.

Check out these colorful benches at a Solana Beach bus station on Pacific Coast Highway!

Passengers waiting for a North County Transit BREEZE bus at this station are surrounded by all sorts of sea creatures in the form of ceramic tiles. You can find the public art just north of Lomas Santa Fe Drive, on the west side of the Solana Beach train station. Bicyclists heading down Solana Beach’s Coastal Rail Trail can also pause to enjoy the artwork.

The fun mosaics, decorating 11 concrete benches, were created by artist Michelle Griffoul.

Here are photos from several benches that you might enjoy!

Two of eleven concrete benches decorated with images of marine life on Pacific Coast Highway, just north of Lomas Santa Fe Drive.
Two of eleven concrete benches decorated with images of marine life on Pacific Coast Highway, just north of Lomas Santa Fe Drive.
A colorful fish, shell and seahorse among small blue tiles.
A colorful fish, shell and seahorse among small blue tiles.
Sit here and you can ride a dolphin that is swimming among abundant sea life.
Sit here and you can ride a dolphin that is swimming among abundant sea life.
More fun public artwork at a Solana Beach bus station.
More fun public artwork at a Solana Beach bus station.
Butterflies! It appears that not all of the images concern aquatic life.
Butterflies! It appears that not all of the images concern aquatic life.
More fish in their watery element.
More fish in their watery element.
More beautiful artwork at the bus station.
More beautiful artwork at the bus station.
A bike rider rolls past public art. This station is part of the Coastal Rail Trail in San Diego's North County.
A bike rider rolls past public art. This station is part of the Coastal Rail Trail in San Diego’s North County.
So much sea life it seems we're somewhere out in the nearby Pacific Ocean.
So much sea life it seems we’re somewhere out in the nearby Pacific Ocean.
A small school of beautiful fish swimming in blue tiles.
A small school of beautiful fish swimming in blue tiles.
Enjoy The Path.
Enjoy The Path.
The sun is shining atop this bench.
The sun is shining atop this bench.
I've spotted a whale!
I’ve spotted a whale!

This blog now features thousands of photos around San Diego! Are you curious? There’s lots of cool stuff to check out!

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Cool art and history in Solana Beach.

A woodie with surfboard under palm trees and a shining sun. This mosaic greets people walking down the sidewalk in Solana Beach.
A woodie with surfboard under palm trees and a shining sun. This mosaic greets people walking down the sidewalk in Solana Beach.

During my visit to Fiesta del Sol in Solana Beach last weekend, I walked around the area of Lomas Santa Fe Drive, South Cedros Avenue and Highway 101 searching for cool sights.

I found some colorful art and images of local history which I’ll now share!

Nearby Fletcher Cove was named after “Colonel” Ed Fletcher, who developed Solana Beach and contributed in the early 20th century to the history of San Diego. As businessman and politician, he was the driving force behind many important accomplishments. He created Lake Hodges and other area reservoirs; he built the plank road through the desert that connected San Diego to Yuma, Arizona; he helped save Balboa Park’s temporary buildings from the 1915 Panama-California Exposition from destruction; he raised money to purchase land for the Naval Training Station on Point Loma; he also acquired a statue of Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo that was a gift to California from Portugal–an iconic sculpture that now stands at Cabrillo National Monument overlooking San Diego Bay.

A fascinating electrical box at the corner of Pacific Coast Highway and Plaza Street contains photos of Solana Beach’s origin and early history.

Grill in sidewalk marks historic U.S. Route 101 (also known as Pacific Coast Highway) where it passes through Solana Beach.
Grill in sidewalk marks historic U.S. Route 101 (also known as Pacific Coast Highway) where it passes through Solana Beach.
An electrical box celebrates the origin and early history of Solana Beach in San Diego's North County.
An electrical box celebrates the origin and early history of Solana Beach in San Diego’s North County. Pictured on the right is Ed Fletcher.
Fletcher Cove opened on July 4, 1925, giving Solana Beach easy access to the shore. A celebration was held that included horse races along the sand.
Fletcher Cove opened on July 4, 1925, giving Solana Beach easy access to the ocean. A celebration was held that included horse races along the sand.
Early photo of Solana Beach, which was developed by Ed Fletcher as a commercial center for nearby Rancho Santa Fe and Del Mar.
Early photo of Solana Beach, which was developed by Ed Fletcher as a commercial center for nearby Rancho Santa Fe and Del Mar.
Old photos decorating the electrical box were provided by the Solana Beach Civic and Historical Society.
Old photos decorating the electrical box were provided by the Solana Beach Civic and Historical Society.
Horses race along the beach as the opening of Fletcher Cove is celebrated.
Horses race along the beach as the opening of Fletcher Cove is celebrated.
Cool mosaic artwork on Pacific Coast Highway shows marine life in the nearby ocean.
Cool mosaic artwork on Pacific Coast Highway shows marine life in the nearby ocean.
An octopus.
An octopus.
A graceful fish.
A graceful fish.
Another beautiful fish made of small ceramic tiles.
Another beautiful fish made of small ceramic tiles.
Nostalgic artwork on an electrical transformer on South Cedros Avenue shows people on the deck of a luxurious ship.
Nostalgic artwork on an electrical transformer on South Cedros Avenue shows people lounging on the deck of a luxurious ship.
More cool street art decorates a utility box on Lomas Santa Fe Drive in Solana Beach.
More cool street art decorates a utility box on Lomas Santa Fe Drive in Solana Beach.
Lose your dreams and you will lose your mind.
Lose your dreams and you will lose your mind.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

You can easily explore Cool San Diego Sights by using the search box on my blog’s sidebar. Or click a tag! There are thousands upon thousands of photos for you to enjoy!

Cool mural overlooks Solana Beach train tracks!

An Amtrak Pacific Surfliner train heads south, passing a cool mural titled Myths at Play, just south of the Solana Beach station.
An Amtrak Pacific Surfliner train heads south, passing a cool mural titled Myths at Play, which can be seen just south of the Solana Beach station.

Yesterday I observed that a super cool mural overlooks the train tracks near the Solana Beach station. Before walking to Fiesta del Sol, I headed a couple blocks south on Pacific Coast Highway in order to take photos.

A little internet research revealed this colorful mural was painted by artist Lindu Prasekti. The building is the David Alan Collection gallery in the Cedros Avenue Design District. The giant mural painted on the building’s west side is titled Myths at Play. It appears to playfully incorporate designs and symbols representing primitive art.

A photo of the colorful Myths at Play mural, painted by Lindu Prasekti.
A photo of the colorful Myths at Play mural, painted by Lindu Prasekti.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

You can easily explore Cool San Diego Sights by using the search box on my blog’s sidebar. Or click a tag! There are thousands upon thousands of photos for you to enjoy!

Photos of Fiesta del Sol in Solana Beach!

The Rockademy performs on the main stage at Fiesta del Sol in Solana Beach.
The Rockademy performs on the main stage at 2018 Fiesta del Sol in Solana Beach.

Today I rode the Coaster train from downtown San Diego up to Solana Beach to experience the annual Fiesta del Sol street festival!

I’d never been to Fiesta del Sol, so I wasn’t quite sure what to expect. What I found was a lot of family fun, live music, a tasty chicken quesadilla, and a perfect bench overlooking the event where I could read and gaze out at the beach and Pacific Ocean!

This cool event continues through the weekend. You’ll find it just off the Pacific Coast Highway, right next to Fletcher Cove Beach Park!

Fiesta del Sol, presented by the Solana Beach Chamber of Commerce, takes place beside Fletcher Cove Beach Park. The festival continues through the weekend.
Fiesta del Sol, presented by the Solana Beach Chamber of Commerce, takes place beside Fletcher Cove Beach Park. The street festival continues through the weekend.
Thousands turn out for a fun community event on a spring day in Solana Beach.
Thousands turn out for a fun community event on a spring day in Solana Beach.
Lots of tasty food could be found.
Lots of tasty food could be found.
Lots of art, too.
Lots of art, too.
This guy recycles surfboards.
This guy recycles surfboards.
GC Dance Company performs at Fiesta del Sol.
GC Dance Company performs at Fiesta del Sol.
Photo of Fletcher Cove Beach Park from Overlook Park. I found a nice bench where I sat and read a book.
Photo of Fletcher Cove Beach Park from Overlook Park. I found a nice bench where I sat and read a book. (After visiting the food trucks to grab a mouthwatering lunch!)
I wandered down to Fletcher Cove and looked north along the cliffs. Not many people were on the beach this overcast, slightly chilly day.
I wandered down to Fletcher Cove and looked north along the cliffs. Not many people were on the beach this overcast, slightly chilly day.
A stand up paddle surfer was out on the Pacific Ocean looking for the perfect wave.
A stand up paddle surfer was out on the Pacific Ocean waiting for the perfect wave.
Walking back up from the beach toward the colorful festival.
Walking back up from the beach toward the colorful festival.
A cool Solana Beach sign above the tops of tents at Fiesta del Sol.
A cool Solana Beach sign above the tops of tents at Fiesta del Sol.
Some people checked out a vendor's old school music for sale.
Some people checked out some old school music for sale.
Another vendor had all sorts of cool wooden items, including some awesome model ships.
Another vendor had all sorts of unique wooden items, including awesome model ships.
The Solana Beach Civic Historical Society had a fascinating display of old photos. I learned about their Heritage Museum in La Colonia Park, which I'll visit someday!
The Solana Beach Civic Historical Society had a fascinating display of old photos. I learned about their Heritage Museum in La Colonia Park, which I’ll visit someday!
Teenage rock band The Elements gets ready to perform at another stage.
Teenage rock band The Elements gets ready to perform at another stage near Pacific Coast Highway.
More food!
More food!
This artist with lots of cool surf images displays his art at various festivals. I remember seeing him at the Ocean Beach Street Fair.
This artist surrounded by cool surf images displays his artwork at various festivals. I remember seeing him at the Ocean Beach Street Fair.
These super long skateboards are Blue Murphy's original Wonderboards! Murphy was a very friendly guy!
These super long skateboards are Blue Murphy’s original Wonderboards! Murphy was a very friendly guy!
On my way back to the Solana Beach train station to catch the Coaster, I spied this friendly stiltwalker. She was telling passersby about a new gallery down the street in the Cedros Avenue Design District. (There's a glimpse of street art on a utility box. Stay tuned for much more!)
On my way back to the Solana Beach train station to catch the Coaster, I spied this friendly stiltwalker. She was inviting people to a gallery down the street in the Cedros Avenue Design District.
Lots of folks were having a great time today at Fiesta del Sol in Solana Beach!
Lots of folks were having a great time today at Fiesta del Sol in Solana Beach!

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

You can easily explore Cool San Diego Sights by using the search box on my blog’s sidebar. Or click a tag! There are thousands upon thousands of photos for you to enjoy!

Sea-themed mosaics at Fletcher Cove and Overlook Park.

Beautiful ceramic mosaic artwork at Fletcher Cove Park in Solana Beach. The orange Garibaldi. By artist Betsy Schulz.
Beautiful ceramic mosaic artwork at Fletcher Cove Park in Solana Beach. The orange Garibaldi. By artist Betsy Schulz.

During my walk last weekend I headed from the Solana Beach Coaster station west a couple of blocks to Fletcher Cove Park. It was my intention to walk north along the ocean, then back east to Pacific Coast Highway. What I discovered as I neared the beach was incredibly cool.

The ceramic sea-themed mosaics you see in my photos were created by artist Betsy Schulz. I’ve documented another installation of her public art near the Santa Fe Depot. To see that, click here.

From the bluff at Overlook Park there’s a good view of Fletcher Cove and the blue Pacific Ocean. There are also four tables with more cool tile artwork by Betsy Schulz. The beautiful mosaics below in Fletcher Cove Park are found along the walkway that leads down to the beach.

Picnic tables along a path leading up through Overlook Park in Solana Beach feature more beautiful, sea-themed tile mosaics.
Picnic tables along a path leading up through Overlook Park in Solana Beach feature more beautiful, sea-themed tile mosaics.
A spiny lobster embedded in a picnic table at Overlook Park.
A spiny lobster embedded in a picnic table at Overlook Park.
Two beautiful fish are part of some sea-themed art in Solana Beach, created by artist Betsy Schulz.
Two beautiful fish are part of some sea-themed art in Solana Beach, created by artist Betsy Schulz.
A crab is featured in this colorful mosaic of ceramic tiles.
A crab is featured in this colorful mosaic of small ceramic tiles.
Sculpture of a seagull near entrance to Fletcher Cove Park.
Sculpture of a seagull near entrance to Fletcher Cove Park. According to one article I read, the sculpture was created in the 1940s, and the artist doesn’t seem to be known.
Fletcher Cove Park, dedicated this day, June 16, 2007.
Fletcher Cove Park, dedicated this day, June 16, 2007.
An octopus on a low wall embraces citizens and businesses in Solana Beach who are part of this coastal community.
An octopus on a low wall embraces citizens and businesses in Solana Beach who are part of this coastal community.
Wonderful tile artwork includes shells, stones and a school of small silvery fish.
Wonderful tile artwork includes shells, stones and a school of small silvery fish.
Barred Surfperch.
Barred Surfperch.
More ceramic fish along the public walkway that heads down through Fletcher Cove Park to the small beach.
More ceramic fish along the public walkway that heads down through Fletcher Cove Park to the small beach.
Red Octopus.
Red Octopus.
A work of art depicting a few of nature's wonders and human creativity.
A work of art depicting a few of nature’s wonders and human creativity.
This oval seat is right next to the beach. We know a mermaid who lives here in the sea...
This oval seat is right next to the beach. We know a mermaid who lives here in the sea…
And here is the mermaid. The stunning mosaic artwork has been worn by sand and time.
And here is the mermaid. The stunning mosaic artwork has been worn by sand, wind and time.
In a tide pool one might discover a Brittle Star.
In a tide pool one might discover a Brittle Star.
Upon the rocky ocean bottom, one might find Green Abalone.
Upon the rocky ocean bottom, one might find Green Abalone.
Brown Tube Snail and California Spiny Lobster.
Brown Tube Snail and California Spiny Lobster.
Shore birds one might see nearby include the Whimbrel and Marbled Godwit.
Shore birds one might see nearby include the Whimbrel and Marbled Godwit.
Thousands of shells, waves rush to our shore, Search high and low tides, you're bound to find more.
Thousands of shells, waves rush to our shore, Search high and low tides, you’re bound to find more.
White Amiantis.
White Amiantis.
Many small sea creatures appear in amazing tile artwork in Solana Beach's Fletcher Cove Park.
Many small sea creatures appear in amazing tile artwork in Solana Beach’s Fletcher Cove Park.
This lifelike Cabezon seems to be looking directly at you!
This lifelike Cabezon seems to be looking directly at you!

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

You can easily explore Cool San Diego Sights by using the search box on my blog’s sidebar. Or click a tag! There are thousands upon thousands of fun photos for you to enjoy!