Saturday, June 18, 2016

The Orlando Strong Group Body Paint at The Other Bar.

Mandi Ilene Schiff of BASE Orlando organized this amazing evening where 49 models were each painted a separate color of the rainbow. Of course the 49 models represent the 49 who fell at the Pulse Terrorist Attack. Six survivors are still in critical condition. The Other Bar (18 Wall St, Orlando, FL) is located right next to the Orlando History Center. Outside the bar was a huge wooden chair with each of it's wooden slats painted a different color of the rainbow.

When I entered, models were already being painted. Robert Johnston , Ilene's fiancee offered me a seat at the bar, and I got right to work. The model closest to me was being painted purple. She must have locked her knees because she suddenly felt faint and had to sit down. People rushed to get her water and juice. She gradually recovered. I have had this happen with a model before and it can be quite terrifying for the model, and the artist. There were far more women being painted than men. I admired James Brendlinger, a producer and director who was being painted blue. Perhaps in the future if male models are needed. I will volunteer. It would be nice to get a bit more fit first. Some of the women were extremely fit. Model Monica Edwards created special Pulse Tribute Dolls that sell for just $25 each. This tragedy hits incredibly close to home for Monica and these dolls are intended as a fundraiser for the victim's recovery and for the families of those we lost. All proceeds will be going to the Pulse Victims Fund, gofundme. 

 Outside the bar was a surreal scene in which dozens of beautiful brightly colored people milled around the bar and socialized. Every model got a wrist bracelet with brightly colored beads. It was funny to find that clicks formed over time with the reds sticking together at the bar. One purple woman exited the bar and shouted out for a short purple man. " Did anyone see a short purple man?" A purple woman hugged a yellow woman as they posed for pictures. A beautiful lesbian couple kissed in front of models that represented every color of the rainbow. There was so much love everywhere I looked. All the bright colors swirled around me.  Then all 49 models were encouraged to go to the park in front of the Orlando History Center for photos. I stayed and watched, soaking in the joy and lore for those still trying to recover. Mandi created an amazing event that celebrated life while honoring those lost.

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

1 comment:

Goose said...

Nice work Thor!