It was a scorching hot day in Arcata, and the sidewalk artists were out in force.
A morning of wrestling with the lamp post that was right where I wanted to sit and squinting into the sun made me grateful I had planned my design out in advance. I went with a honey bee and borage flower for my sponsor, local landscaper Genevieve Schmidt. I thought it would be well suited to the chalk/pastel color palette. It took longer than I thought because I’m not the kind of artist that will be satisfied with a solid color out of the box, so I ended up blending everything anyway.
I always come home at the end of the day sore and tired and complaining that I didn’t get to stay longer and finish that last thing. Leah Vaughn, who did this square for Holly Yashi jewelry, takes this hard headed determination to whole different level, doing a square twice the size, baby in tow, only scant weeks after giving birth.
There are a lot of things we think about in planning a pastel design for an event like this. The commentary of passers-by teaches us a lot about what people like to see. Mine was polarizing, with people either loving or hating bees. I like to do something that gets the kids excited. Local graphic designer Casey Vaughn did the above pastel for Plaza, which was a hit with the graybeards, but for whatever reason, today’s youth has little appreciation for a decanter of single malt whiskey. One of my favorites of the day. I kinda want to hang it up over my bar.
Susan Devine did this dreamscape with stained glass bird for Barbara Rips.
Here’s a view of the action. I’m sorry I didn’t find time to get more shots like this..
My favorite of the day was this spider with geometric web for The Alibi. This artist has been consistently excellent over the years.
Jerry Lee Wallace is a personal favorite of mine every year. This one I would hang on my wall.
It wouldn’t feel like Pastels on the Plaza without Duane Flatmo. As usual, this was huge, about four times the size of the average square, but it probably seems small to a guy who paints whole buildings.
Talisman beads had an interesting concept here, and executed it perfectly.
And there were hundreds of other artists on the plaza. Here’s a small exerpt: