Hudson Valley Chalk Festival, July 2012

We were invited to participate in the inaugural Hudson Valley Chalk Art Festival in New Paltz, NY, held over the weekend of July 21-22. The festival was held in the parking lot of a shopping center in tiny New Paltz, with about a dozen invited artists and an equal number of local artists trying the medium. Neither of us had ever been to the Hudson Valley before this, and we were excited to see an area that was universally described as "beautiful" when we mentioned it. Researching "New Paltz" online, we discovered that it is the gateway town to a well known rock climbing area called the Gunks (short for Shawangunk). So we created a 3D painting of rock climbers. We found our subjects closer to home, however, at Castle Rock State Park in the Santa Cruz mountains.

The festival was planned as a three-day event starting on Friday, July 20. We arrived Thursday night during a rainstorm, and the rain didn't let up until midafternoon on Friday, so a group of us played tourist a bit, then worked together to measure out the squares once the skies had cleared. (Wayne's Rule: the number of street painters needed to measure out squares for a festival is one half the number of available painters.) Fortunately, Saturday and Sunday had beautiful weather and all the painters were able to complete their paintings. The organizer planned to leave the parking lot closed on Monday, but we were awakened early Monday morning to thunder, lightning, and the sound of rain hitting the roof. Not much remained by the time we left New Paltz. We hope to have a chance to return again next year!

A row of street painters work together to snap a chalk line
Preparing the squares: seven street painters work together to snap a long chalk line edge. (Left to right on the chalk line: Cheryl, Janet Tombros, Sharyn Chan Namneth, Lorelle Miller, Graham Curtis, Ann Hefferman, and Joel Lau, with Fred Wilms, Jay Schwartz and Jeanie Burns observing.

Wayne paints background rocks
We started at the top on Saturday, getting the background in before moving on to rocks and climbers.

Close up photo of painting of a rock climber
The first rock climber rappels down the left cliff face.

Wayne smiles while painting rocks
Wayne rocks!

Cheryl talks to someone next to the first painted climber
Cheryl and the first climber.

Photo of the street painting as of 2 PM on Saturday
Status at 2 PM on Saturday.

Cheryl paints the second climber--photo taken from upper right corner of the painting
On to the front climber.

Photo close up of the front climber in the painting
Front climber...shirtless.

Yinh paints poppies
Our friend Yinh came by and painted poppies.

The painting at the end of the day on Saturday
We got a lot done on Saturday: all of the background, much of the midground, and the two largest foreground figures.

Wayne paints the front rocks
Wayne paints the rocks in the front.

Small figures
Smaller figures in the painting.

Wayne poses with the painting
Wayne tries to help a climber up the slope.

View of the finished painting from bottom right
An angled view of the finished painting.

A little boy helps a climber
Passers-by enjoyed posing with the painting.

People standing on a rock
More little painted people--these were about 6 inches tall at most.

The view of the finished painting from the top
The view from the top.

The background and midground landscape
Background and midground hills, rocks and trees.

The finished painting
All done!

< Previous Festival | Street Painting Index | Next Festival >
Return to our homepage.