Local Artists “Chalk the Block”

FORT SMITH (KFSM)- From detailed portraits to abstract works of art, local artists tried their hand at chalking the sidewalk at the annual Chalk the Block event in Downtown Fort Smith.

The competitors were given one rule; be creative.

"I really love color, and I've done paintings of color that involve different layers of transparencies," artist, Jessica Medeiros said. "I thought I wanted to try that out with chalk."

For some artists, it took a little planning.

"I actually started working on it last weekend," artist, Breanna McNaughton said. "I did this last year, and I also sketched out my design last year. Four hours seems like a long time, but it's really not."

Once artists hit their time limit, the chalk had to be put down.

"I think I'm satisfied," McNaughton said. "You're going to always want to fix more, especially when you're using chalk. You have to know when to say stop."

Paint is the material most of these artists are used to working with.

"This is actually my first time using chalk," Medeiros said. "I know my hands were killing me, so I would say wear gloves. That way you can blend without rubbing your hand raw."

For one student, this was a chance to get away.

"I'm a college student," Medeiros said. "So, this is actually me just having fun with it, and not doing homework. I'm actually a studio art major here at the University in Fort Smith."

The competition featured more than 60 artists ranging from middle school to college students. Organizers said the event this year was four times larger than last year, and they are hoping to see even more people come to participate next year.