Donkeys Around Town Recap

So the past six days have been quite a whirlwind. A couple of months ago I was notified I was one of 28 artists selected to paint 57 fiberglass donkeys that will be displayed around town in Philadelphia during the Democratic National Convention. Each artist was to paint two donkeys each and each donkey represents a state, Washington DC or US territory. I was given Oklahoma and Missouri. Last friday was the start of a week long marathon painting session at a big industrial warehouse in Northeast Philly to get the donkeys ready for their install date of July 1.

The artists had to paint the donkeys on site so it sort of felt a bit like donkey boot camp  - I worked on average 10 hours a day. it was a really interesting experience and I got to meet some really cool artists. It was nice to see how everyone approached their design work - some artists were very organized and had mapped out their donkey to a very precise degree. Others, like myself, winged it a bit as the donkey template we were initially given to work on a design did not match up exactly with the actual donkey we had to paint, plus the surface texture ended up being very different as well - the statues' surface was very heavily textured and not smooth, making it difficult to do detail work. It was a learning experience and I think it helped  me grow as an artist to work on a tight deadline outside of my comfort zone. Overall I am pleased with my designs, though they differ somewhat from my initial concept (more particularly Oklahoma).

The project is titled Donkeys Around Town and it's been getting a lot of hype in the news. While I was painting we had representatives from CNN, NBC, Associated Press and local news outlets stop by to document the process. Tomorrow is an  official press conference which I attending, and there will be even more press coming to interview the artists. Plus Main Line Media contacted me directly to do a feature on me. I'll be sure to post links to things as they are published.

The project coordinators will also post professional photographs of all the donkeys in the days to come, and the donkeys will also be available for auction. Each donkey will be mounted to a base with the artist's name and project title and the left side of the donkey will get the state name stencilled on them next week. In addition, there will be a scavenger hunt for all the donkeys in July and August. Go to to see information on the project as it's released. You should also follow me on facebook for more up to date details.

In the meantime, some photos of my two donkeys from the past two days.  Please click to enlarge.



(and yes it was initially creepy to walk into a big industrial warehouse and have 57 white donkeys with eerily realistic looking eyes staring back at you)

nope, not creeped out at all. Go away you donkeys of the damned.

Once we started painting the donkeys they started to seem more friendly.

A couple of videos from during the middle of the week