This past weekend I filled my tank with gas and loaded up my tote with frozen bottles of water, a tube of SPF 30 sunscreen, and a sun hat, and made my way down to the 2014 Mission Viejo Arts Alive Festival for a weekend of street painting, food trucks, a variety of artisan vendors, and live music and performances.
This year’s festival celebrated the arts and culture of the 1970s, which was brought to life through art, dance, music, and handicrafts. I joined my cousin and fellow artist, Lury Norris, and more than 60+ other street painters to create works of art inspired by the bygone decade. Our subject? A black-and-white rendering of the beautiful, talented, and kick-ass 1970s heroine, Foxy Brown, played by the lovely and legendary actress/model, Pan Grier.
As exhausting as participation in these festivals can be, year after year these artists flock back to them. In spite of the heat; in spite of the discomfort of kneeling for three days straight on the hot pavement; and in spite of the soreness your body feels in the days to come... for nothing other than the love of art and their craft these arts brave it all. Knowing all the long that the art they pour their hearts into this weekend, will be washed away come Monday. Now that's what I call passion! The community and commodity of this diverse group of talented and hospitable individuals is overwhelming. Every ethnicity, gender, and age group is represented here. Working side-by-side in high spirits and with a welcoming attitude. It's no wonder residences and participates come back year after year.
This year's pieces ranged from a variety of 1970's icons.
From cartoon characters we all know and love...
To iconic stars that inspired a generation....
From movie characters, villains, and superheros...
to artistic renderings.
Needless to say, there was a lot to take in. And these photos are just a few examples of the street art created this weekend. As far as vendors go there was everything from handcrafted clothing to jewelry, from lamps to art. I myself came away with a beautiful handmade shawl made with organic materials and a leaf pendant, as well as Lury and I receiving an honorable mention during Sunday's reward ceremony.
To check out more about this festival and to see who this years big winners were, check out www.cityofmissionviejo.org.