• Thomas Faires

Art Battle 760, so much fun!!!

Photo by Patrizia Brasch

I had a blast at Art Battle 760.

Unfortunately, I did not win, but there was some very stiff competition from the other amazing artists. I was very happy with the piece I created, and had some really great feedback from the audience. A few people told me they really like my piece, and some were intrigued about my use of a limited pallet.

It was a monochromatic piece, with only one additional colour. The idea was to allow the viewer’s imagination take the story/narrative to the next scene... it was a little bit of play painting. As you can see by the image, it depicts someone entering a darkened room, but the room is a not a normal room. It is full of pipes and tanks, and has many dark recesses. Why is our “hero” entering a suspicious room? And what is that slightly high-lighted object being held? It looks like a weapon. I tried to use the red outline and the character’s stance to create a sense of urgency, alarm, and fear. I was hoping to tell a little story, a playful narrative with the painting. I hope people picked up on it.

The other paintings that night were more buoyant and fun. Perhaps people were seeking a more positive theme and energy from the paintings. Perhaps because the evening was a day after “blue Monday”, the most depressing day of the year, people wanted more positive imagery. I think I was a bit out of step with the psychology of the evening. Nonetheless, I had a fantastic time.

If you have a chance, want to have a fun evening, and let loose your creativity, then contact Art Battle to find out if they’re holding an event near you. Be ready to have a great time.

Also, be ready for a little pre-event fretting. I tossed out a few ideas before settling on an image. My practice pieces were quite tight on time, thankfully I decided to use the pallet knife to load the canvas with paint. Once I completed my round, and had some positive feedback... and still being on a painting high... I fretted that I might advance to the next round, and so had to come up with a new painting. I eventually decided on a cubist painting if I did happen to advance. Alas, it was not to be, but that painting now exists in my head and will be painted soon. So in a way you can say Art Battle inspired my next painting.

Some more Art Battle tips... bring someone special for support; to help keep you relaxed and organized (I couldn’t do it without Pat, she keeps me focused); make sure you check out the space around your easel (we use our easel space in the studio intuitively... so get comfortable on the Art Battle stage); let your neighbouring artists know of any painting quirks you have (if you paint with flourish and splatter then your technique may “contribute” to another artist’s painting); stare into your blank canvas, focus, and see your finished work before the event begins (something to do with seeing your goal completed allows to control the moment); bring a snack (after the high energy output, you’ll probably be hungry when your round is finished); don’t forget to pick up your brushes (it’s easy to do in all the excitement); and finally have FUN!!

It was an amazing way to spend a Tuesday night. Go to an Art Battle near you. Have fun! Cheer on your favourite artist! Happy painting!


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