If you are like me, you cannot draw worth a dang, but you love art and marvel at anyone who can create beautiful images. While there are an abundance of opportunities to admire finished pieces, rarely, if ever, do we get to see the artist in action. Even more rare to find a room full of artists just. Creating.

Last night, in a prelude to the Western Art Auction, a handful of artists participated in the Quick Draw. Right before our eyes a blank canvas became a work of art. Figures materialized like ghosts.


I was so fascinated many methods people used. Fabienne Leydecker (above) said she has an idea in her mind and lets it emerge on the canvas.

Others used live models and photographs.


There were hair dryers and q-tips.


Richard St. Pierre said he spent 40 hours carving to be ready for the one hour it would take him to complete the detail of his peregrine falcon.


Watching these images emerge slowly over the hour was the tiniest insight into an artist’s mind.



[Doug Beardsley, 2013 poster artist]


The auction culminated in the sale of Adeline Halvorson’s “Pulling Together,” the 2014 Stampede Poster. The Herald wrote, “Calgary Stampede president Bob Thompson, who gave the painting its name, told the crowd the spirit of the working horse took on special significance for him after the flood. It made him think of the countless employees and volunteers who did what they had to do to make sure Stampede 101 went ahead.” The piece sold for $125,000.

The money raised at the auction last night will be divided between the artists and the Calgary Stampede Foundation.