today I participated in the chalk art contest at the San Gabriel Lunar New Year festival. 2016 is the year of the Fire Monkey, so that’s the theme I went with. It was my first time doing a large-scale chalk image, actually, the first time I’ve done chalk art with intention since I got married. I don’t really think playing with sidewalk chalk with my kids counts. anyway, the project went well in spite of only having 4 hours to work on it. the space we were allotted is 6×6′. I started with something roughly 6×6″ in color, scanned it in and applied a grid, then blew it up using the grid to the final size. The chalk didn’t really perform as expected, and the asphalt was rougher than my driveway (where I did a test patch). I ended up doing a underpainting in tempera to help fill in the nooks and crannies. The entire experience was made so much better when my friend Priya showed up half-way through with iced tea, words of encouragement, and an amazing willingness to hold an umbrella over me for shade. She actually followed me around, truly I am lucky to have her in my life! She was such a marketing dynamo for me, I almost think my Mom was paying her. Since I was teaching Zentangle class this morning, another good friend, Corina, came down and checked me in so I’d get a good spot for my art work—today was truly brought to fruition by friends!
Zentangle peeps, you’ll recognize a few patterns here, Sandswirl sky, Zander bamboo, and O-cee for the lanterns/flowers (it’s subjective). It was a really fun but exhausting day. I’m glad I did it, and I think I might participate in more of these competitions. The people are really nice! (Shout out to Grasiela who was super helpful and friendly to the noob!)
Here are progress pictures. I used ancient kid sidewalk chalk and a carpenter’s chalk line to do the grid (it was my grandpa’s, I’m glad I kept it!). Dry tempera paint left over from my toddlers was used as the under painting, along with the kind of horrible stiff brushes that came with them (good for kids, and asphalt, apparently, and nothing else). Once I got the background set, I used chalks from Eternity Arts to do shading and detail (the other artists called it “Jesus chalk” for reasons that will be obvious if you go to their web site). It’s good stuff, but pricey. It did last longer than I expected though, so that was a nice surprise. I wish I had pictures of other entries, they were great. (I was honestly busy till the end and then just exhausted and went home. My phone fell somewhere into the pile of stuff in my wagon while I was cleaning up and I did not have the energy to find it at the time. Regretting that now….)
The city posted images of the other artist’s work! Click to embiggen: