As you may have read in my last blog, I recently returned from live painting for Chrysler/Jeep/Dodge at the Coconut Grove Art Festival in Miami. Although I have done live painting events for them in the past, this trip felt like a particularly big to-do for me. This was the first live event I’ve attended without the bus, and without Tobi there for assistance.
I have a studio space in Detroit now, so being that I wasn’t already on the road, and the weather between Michigan and Florida was cold and snowy, I decided to book a plane ticket for myself, and take my mom along for the adventure.
Luckily, I was able to book a nice hotel right outside of the Coconut Grove Art Festival, so once I purchased supplies, the amount of commuting in unfamiliar territory was limited - we were able to just walk down to the festival every morning, and walk back to the hotel at night.
Having my mom there with me made this a special trip. It was really wonderful to be able to spend some quality one-on-one time making memories with her. It was especially nice, because it was 14 degrees back home in Detroit, but we were able to sit poolside and get some sun in our downtime. It was great to have her along, and give her an inside look at my work process and what goes on when I’m on the road.
I live painted for 3 days in the tent, and each day I created a unique painting, but with a common theme. I decided to go for an abstract take on the classic Jeep grill, using colors that reflected the vibrant Coconut Grove atmosphere. At the end of each day, the painting from that day was raffled off to someone who had stopped by to watch me paint during the day.
I really liked the raffle aspect for a couple of reasons. One, it helped draw people to the tent, and encouraged a dialogue as they asked about the paintings and why I was there. Two, I got to meet new people and see their excitement as the walked away with one of my original pieces! I love seeing the joy my art brings others, so this part of the event was definitely something I’d like to incorporate more, if possible.
Shout out to FCA and Event Next for bringing me on for these events. Live painting is always a fun challenge, due to the restricted time and unknown elements such as weather, as well as the lively crowds and excellent crew that always show up. All in all, this was a great event, and I look forward to similar opportunities in the future.
For all of the photos from Coconut Grove Arts Festival, Click HERE
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