O'Shea, born in Ballintaylor, Dungarvan (Waterford County), Ireland on October 15, 1876, came to the United States when he was about twenty years of age. In New York City, he was a student at the Adelphi Academy and at the Art Students League, under George Bridgman (1864-1943), author of Constructive Anatomy. O'Shea went to Pasadena in 1913 where his works were quickly exhibited in one-man shows. Two years later, he moved to Laguna Beach and in 1917 he moved again, this time to Carmel Highlands, where he became involved in Carmel and San Francisco arts organizations.
After a trip to New York, where his canvases were featured in a Kingore Galleries exhibition, O'Shea married Molly Pol
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