10 Artists. 1 canvas. 30 minutes. 1 Golden Paint Brush.
As the clock began to approach 8pm, I was getting increasingly nervous. What had I let myself in for. I had 30 minutes to produce a piece of work…..my artwork usually takes me around 50 hours. We gathered as a group, 10 nervous artists waiting to get their instructions.
The concept: 2 rounds of live painting (30mins only), 5 artists in each round. The crowd would then vote for their favourite 2. The final then consisted of four paintings, the 2 winners from each round, and the audience voted again for the final winner. All paintings would then be auctioned off, via a silent bid, with half of the proceeds going to charity and the other to the artist. “Be ready for 7.50!”, he said….
I was lucky enough to be in the first round. What can I say, terrified is not the word! After the count down, 3,2,1, start painting, my mind went totally blank, but there was no time to waste. I started painting, not really concentrating as I was so conscious of the 200 people watching and walking round the artists. After 15 minutes passed and was announced I knew I had to pull it together, so the big guns came out, the palette knife!
I can honestly say it’s up there with bungee jumping! And like that, I don’t think I shall be doing it twice. But what an amazing experience and I am so glad I did it (looking back, not at the time). I wanted to push myself out of my comfort zone and to be part of a new way for the public to experience art.
The atmosphere was brilliant and a lot of money was raised for charity on the night. I meet some lovely artists and some great new concepts, painting with “rice cakes” even.. That’s one new technique I won’t ever forget. The organisers John and Sophie were extremely enthusiastic, supportive and the dreamers who made it happen. Huge kudos to them for making such an exciting concept become a very successful reality.
What next for Art Battle Manchester….I hear there might be a Battle of the Champions in the distant future! Will I take part….hmmmm, I think I shall leave on a high and go out whilst at the top. The Golden Brush is sitting pride of place in my art studio – “winner”!