Here’s a fun way to check out what my team and I have been up to for most of 2015. ART- FULL [VIEW] is my own personal magazine / newsletter to keep track of the various year’s adventure, works & experiences. I’m usually so busy looking forward that I often forget how much ground my team and I cover in any one year. Compiling the content for this edition of ART- FULL really made me stop and reflect on how fortunate I am to be able to do what I love (art / street painting), every day of the year!
Speaking of passion, I thought I’d share the story of how I found my passion (street painting) by accident many years ago. I had the good fortune to stumble upon the I Madonnari Festival in lovely Santa Barbara, California and just flipped when I saw fellow artists Rod Tryon, Phil Roberts, Jane Durand, Julie Kirk Purcell & Ann Hefferman making incredibly detailed chalk paintings from classical masterpieces. These artists were spending 3 days down on their hands and knees drawing with chalk pastels on pavement! How crazy cool is that?? Well little did I know then that these people would be my tribe, that I belonged with them.
I followed up on the wild enthusiasm experienced at the event, seeing all of that amazing work, by contacting the festival to participate the following year. I signed up, brought my own sponsor with me (with a little persuasion from ‘oh so excited’ me) and set about making my first drawing. I did not know the first thing about using chalk pastels on pavement but had used the medium quite a bit in college. This experience gave me the confidence to tackle my piece of asphalt as if it were a large drawing and you know what? The result of my tenacity paid off – not only did I get a lot of support from the public and senior artists on my work, but I received an invitation to join in another festival that was happening a few weeks later. That started the ball rolling, without any planning or idea that I could do more of this. Fast forward 18 years later & I am still happily drawing on pavement.
That’s me working on my very first street painting in 1998. I had a little 8′ x 8′ space then. It was an original composition of a peacock morphing out of a patterned drapery, inspired by MC Escher. I even had a dustbuster back then!
I know that not everyone connects with their passion so effortlessly – sometimes it can be difficult to figure out just exactly it is that you want to spend you time on. Maybe your passion is having no passion! I can’t say I know how to assist people with this question but I do know what worked for me.
- Being open to anything! (And being vigilant to opportunities that may present themselves from the most unlikeliest of places.)
- Having courage to go for it!
- Trusting that you have everything you need – yes, if you build it, they will come.
- Dreaming big – skies the limit here people so don’t hold back!
I know it sounds cliché but it if works, it’s worth sharing. These four points have helped keep me grounded, centered, focused and committed to my work. For those of you still out there searching, take heart! Identify those things that you truly love (no matter how crazy everyone else thinks you are) and go about exploring them. You may wind up in unfamiliar territory at the outset but with perseverance, it won’t be for long. And you may really like what you find.
With that being said, enjoy this first issue of ART-FULL [VIEW]