The 2021 Alameda County Fair is being held Oct. 22-31, but its fine arts, gardening and hobby competitions took place online in June.
Judging was done by a team of artists both local and out of state, said marketing manager Tiffany Cadrette, who noted that adult entries totaled 1,667.
"Select Best of Show winners will be displayed during the Fall Fair in October," she said.
The watercolor painting, "Hidden Away," by Jeff Ishikawa, won first place in Aqua Media and was judged Best of Show in Adult Fine Art: Painting and Drawing. Ishikawa, who lives in Fremont, said it portrays a suburban creek in the neighborhood behind Mission San Jose High School, which his daughter attended.
"We would ride our bikes out there and once I stopped and took some pictures," he recalled.
Ishikawa also received a second-place award in watercolors for "Neighborhood Colors."
He began painting in high school but majored in graphic design with a concentration in illustration in college as a better way to make a living. But since 2016 he has been painting a lot, he said, and now displays his work throughout the country.
"The first show I got in was in Pleasanton, the Fresh Arts exhibit in the Harrington Gallery," he recalled. "I thought it was a good local venue to show my work."
Most of his works are landscapes, he said, but he also enjoys creating slice of life narratives and still lifes.
In the pastel category of Fine Arts, Linda Garbarino's "Pleasanton Cattle Drive" received a Judge's Favorite award. Garbarino, a Pleasanton artist, said she enjoys entering the fair competitions.
"The thing I like best about entering my art work in the fair is the opportunity for broad visibility by fellow artists and art lovers from many cities who find something in your art that speaks to them," she explained. "The visitors to the art exhibit often leave wonderful messages to artists about their entries. And in some cases visitors happily purchase art to enhance their homes and their lives.
"Thankful" by Dublin photographer Vanessa Thomas received first place in the category of "Photography alternative process/mixed media."
Adult hobby collection were an eclectic mix, ranging from first-place winner "Many Faces of Shakespeare" by Phillip Rayher to a simple fun grouping of "Bananas in Pajamas."
All of the entries can be viewed on links through AlamedaCountyFair.com.
This year's Livestock Show is July 5-10, and the 4-H and FAA Livestock Auction took place from 9 a.m.-4 p.m., Sunday, July 11. Bids were open to be made online or in person at the fairgrounds.
For the auction brochure or live auction link, or to register as a buyer, visit alamedacountyfair.com/junior-livestock-auction.