2015 Street Painting Festival

Fun times at the street painting festival this year! The festival is a benefit for the Children’s Creative Project, held at the Santa Barbara Mission, and takes place every Memorial Day weekend. My 12×12 -foot painting was based on a photo taken with my phone from the cliffs at Shoreline Park, overlooking the ocean. It features a flowering aloe and a hummingbird (the hummingbird was from another photo I took downtown). There were so many fun and amazing paintings this year – here are a few photos. Enjoy!

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I Madonnari 2014 – Santa Barbara Street Painting Festival

2014_thumbAnother year, another festival! The 28th, to be exact. Such a fun event, held at the Santa Barbara Mission – and it benefits the Children’s Creative Project, which brings arts education programs (visual and performing) to schools throughout the area. Artists create street paintings in squares that are sponsored by local businesses and organizations, with sizes ranging from 6×4 up to 12×12 feet. The featured artist creates a painting at the base of the Mission steps (12×16′). And of course there is food, music and an area reserved for children’s street paintings.

This year I created a hummingbird and flower scene – similar to last year’s painting, with a new cast. It’s an homage to Martin Johnson Heade (whose 19th-century paintings featured hummingbirds and orchids in tropical settings), with a Santa Barbara twist. My bird this year is an Anna’s hummingbird, flying up to a Pride of Madeira flower (aka echium). I took the photos of the flowers in our neighborhood, and the background view of the ocean and sky was from a photo taken on one of my walks, toward the end of our street. The purple flowers were fairly detailed and I spent most of the three days painting them. Here are some photos showing the process of making the 12×12′ painting, plus a few others I took during the festival.

Santa Barbara Street Painting Festival 2013

This year’s street painting festival was fun! There were so many beautiful paintings, and my 12 x 12-foot piece was part of the “six pack” between the Mission steps and the concession area. Although this year it wasn’t technically a six-pack of 12×12 squares, as two artists combined their squares to create one large 12 x 24 painting and it was amazing! More photos coming soon…

Photo – copyright Michael Brown, and the Children’s Creative Project

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I Madonnari Street Painting Festival 2012

Another fun year at the 2012 I Madonnari Street Painting Festival in Santa Barbara! So many beautiful paintings and a great time hanging out with friends. Thanks to everyone who came by, and my friend Sophie who modeled and helped paint on the last day.

Images of 25th Anniversary Street Painting

Thanks to Mark Chun for sending along these great composite photos of the street painting we created for the 25th anniversary Here are the two murals created from details of WPA paintings (see images below) and some information about them.


On May 6, 1935, the Works Progress Administration (W.P.A.) was created to help provide economic relief to the citizens of the United States, providing jobs and income to the unemployed during the Great Depression. [Read more…]

I Madonnari Street Painting Festival ~ 25th Anniversary!

A group of six artists including myself created a street painting (30 x 24 feet) to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Santa Barbara I Madonnari Street Painting Festival. The painting was actually two WPA murals depicting workers in agriculture and industry. We had a lot of fun and the weather was great, except for a couple of windy afternoons that led to my having an allergy attack on the the last day of the festival. Other than that, it was perfect. Friends, art, food, music…I’m already looking forward to next year!

It was impossible to take a photo of the entire painting, due to its size. On the day after the festival, professional photos were taken from a scissor lift used for picking fruit from trees. Looking forward to seeing those images. In the meantime, here are a few of various sections of the paintings, taken at different times during the three-day festival. Note, we started on Thursday before the festival to get a head start. Click on images below to see larger photos.