Art Journal by Flavia Testa

Flavia Art News (F.A.N.)

A quiet October Fall –

Picture yourself sitting on your comfy chair with your smart phone aimlessly scrolling your social media and an event shows up that you have never seen. You click and see that it is just a week away and figure, I could have applied to go to this event and show my work. Wish I had seen it sooner. You glaze over it but there is a little voice inside you that says, “hey, you wanna try?” “What have you got to loose?” “You can figure it out, it will be fine, they will probably say no, anyway.”

So you inbox the event messenger page and give them an idea of what you would have done had you had time to go through their forms and proposed. You attach a few images and hit send. You don’t think too much and the whole thing from start to finish is over before you have had real doubts.

Ten minutes go by and PING!

“We’d be DELIGHTED TO HAVE YOU SHOW YOUR WORK!”

You look at your smart phone and wonder, “did this just happen? Is technology really so helpful? What did I just get myself into?” It bloody worked again! Not the first time you sent an email last minute and got a yes, in fact it’s starting to be a bit of a trend of late, but every time you think it’s new and it won’t happen. Every time.

You work for a week solid on new designs and trial and errors, the closer the event day comes, the more you think, “Am I going to be able to pull this off?” Your inner voice says, “Listen, you have an amazing personality, people love your energy and your positivity, don’t lose sight of that. If all else fails, just kill them with kindness and charm!” Self pep talks are the best!

The night of the event is here, you have already prepared everything two days before and you just put your last minute items in your car and hope you didn’t forget anything. You drive and you think, “I got this. I got this.”

Your biggest fears melt when you arrive to the location and see most stands are not up yet and people are pretty relaxed around the whole thing. You get your booth number and you go look for your spot. Luckily it is an outdoor event and it is a beautiful night out, not too hot, not to cold and summer is still faded in the background of the evening. “It could be a great turn out,” you think.

You organize your lights and table and art and you fiddle and rearrange for what seems like an eternity, no one is really walking by yet. You start doodling. It’s a great way to break the ice. As you do, people are talking, skateboarders whizz by howling, a little girl and her mother come over and look at your work and smile without saying anything. You are immersed in your world now and you look up and say hello with an inviting smile. The people trickle down the street, happy, open, engaged, you start making conversation, introducing yourself and your work and it flows, seamlessly and effortlessly Someone asks for a hand-drawn image and you do it. People crowd around and look on. You think to yourself hiding beside a table is not good, get onto the sidewalk. So you do and as soon as you change real estate, things boom! People stop, they want art on the spot! They want to be part of whatever is going on! Paint is sprayed, ink flies and all of a sudden an event is happening right there on the waterfront of this beautiful sidewalk, the river is flowing, you are liquid like the night and art is being made for all sorts of new people! It’s alive, it’s exciting and it is absolutely marvellous. You know you are doing the right work, you know you are in the right place and nothing can burst that moment! Friends and even family surprise you and come to see you. You make art, you have made money and you have above all made a connection. This is art. This is community. This is the indomitable spirit that the artist has of creativity. This is a superpower!

-Flavia