Sunday, November 7, 2010

Masquerade at the Bohemian

Terry got a private invitation in the mail for a Masquerade party the day before Halloween on the sixth floor of the Grand Bohemian downtown. The invitation said the party started at 6pm and since I had just finished another sketch assignment, I was in the area. I arrived at the same time as the Peroni girls. They wore tight red tops and skin sight white bell bottoms with high heels. Only bartenders, chefs and event planners were scurrying around getting ready. Most of the space was taken up by a white billowing tent right out of Arabian Nights. A cool gust of wind sent black napkins flying. The other half of the space was a swimming pool with a DJ set up and two go go dancers on either side of him. I settled on a white leather couch and started blocking in the space.

An event planner asked if I was there for the Masquerade. He pulled out a list and asked me for my name. I thought to myself, "Great the second I start sketching, I will be politely asked to leave." I had to repeat my name several times and even spell it out, all the while continuing to draw. He finally left me in peace, I'm not sure if he ever saw my name. People slowly began to arrive ordering their martini's and Peroni beers. By the time I finished this sketch, the place was packed with people in masks. I of course wanted to sketch each and every gown and mask but there just wasn't time. Terry arrived dressed as Zorro and she bought some viking horns for me.

For the second sketch I got up and stood at the empty table seen in the middle of the first sketch. People quickly crowded in around me to eat their lobster tails and bisque. I started by drawing the man standing at the table opposite me. He was at the same table with his girlfriend and I had drawn her but left him out since I had already drawn a Peroni girl and wine barrel where he stood. He joked with me when he saw the sketch, saying, "Look he drew the beautiful woman but not me!"

Just as I was putting finishing touches on the second sketch, an event planner came up to me and asked if I would like to be in introduced to Richard Kessler, the owner of the hotel. Richard and his wife Martha were in an exclusive velvet roped off area next to the pool. Richard looked like a cattle rancher and his wife looked exotic in an all black gown and mask. When I showed him the sketchbook I was working on, I could tell he honestly appreciated the work. He asked if I worked larger and I mentioned the eighteen foot mural at the Sonesta Hotel.

From here, Terry and I decided to go to the Enzian to see what costumes were there. The Eden Bar was packed but honestly there were more costumes at the Grand Bohemian. We called it a night and headed home.

Prints are available for each sketch for $250 and many originals can be purchased for $400. White museum grade shadow box frames are $100 more. You can e-mail Thor at

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