This month kicks off a new online local event – the North Grenville Arts Challenge. The Challenge will be hosted by the North Grenville Times via Facebook. “We all know that North Grenville is a creative community, and now is the time to show off our artistic side,” said local artist Jennifer Gow.
The weekly Challenge will focus on the visual arts. “Very young or not so young, beginner or seasoned professional, Sunday painter or occasional doodler, this challenge is for you,” said Jennifer. “It is open to all residents of North Grenville and readers of the North Grenville Times. Don’t know what to draw or paint? Don’t worry. Each week you will find a new creative prompt on the North Grenville Times Facebook page to get your artistic juices flowing.”
The theme for August is “summertime fun”. Any medium is acceptable, including watercolour, crayon, coloured pencil, pastel, pen and ink, pencil, acrylic, or oil, just to name a few. “So, even if you have never picked up a pencil or a paintbrush before, we hope that you will join the fun and be part of this creative online community,” Jennifer added.
The ”Challenge” aspect is very light-hearted. There are no winners or losers, as that is not what art is supposed to be about. However, popular works may be selected for publication in the North Grenville Times, with the artist’s permission. The enjoyment of art is purely in the eye of the beholder, and so all art will be proudly displayed, so long as it is not obscene or potentially offensive. “People can view the page and “like” the art, but we are not giving prizes at this time,” said Jennifer. “We want to see how it goes.”
North Grenville certainly has no shortage of capable artists. In one instance, Jennifer was commissioned to do a portrait of Alex Akiwenzie, Ojibway Hereditary Chief of the Three Fires Nation. “I want to brag about her portrait,” joked Jayne Couch, an artist who is a key player in developing the Arts Challenge. Jayne helped to mentor Jennifer through the creation of the portrait, which is an example of the kind of art that can be submitted in the weekly Arts Challenge. Jayne herself is a key player in the North Grenville arts community, as she offers advanced art classes for those looking to improve their skills.
Given the mural that was recently commissioned for the Kemptville Farmers’ Market – set to be unveiled later this month – North Grenville’s artsy side has certainly been coming to the fore recently. To follow the North Grenville Arts Challenge, or submit artwork, visit www.facebook.com/NGTimes.