(Photo taken of my family when we began in 2011)
When I began my art project on the side of the RV, the fellow campers surrounding us near Washington DC were far from supportive. They walked by sharing their uninvited opinion of me drawing out a wing with sign paint on the now decal stripped, barren sides. I doubted my vision, and wondered if I could really encourage the people I met in my travels to reconnect with their passions and connect with me.
The project challenged the people who were meant to see it, some could not process the site of a sporadically dotted RV parked in a campsite next to them. Others were too uncomfortable to take part in something so unconventional by placing a vinyl dot on a vehicle. Many noted, they had never been asked by someone what inspires them in life and it was the first time they had self-reflected on a part of who they are.
It seemed, the project had some kind of effect on everyone who caught sight of it; traveling down the freeway construction workers would smile, parked at the Walmart photos would be snapped, or within a campground where it was a conversation starter. Participants would be SO EXCITED to be a part of such an incredible project, while others would stop by to tell us how they thought it was interesting. Sometimes spouses would look at each other wide-eyed and state “I never knew you loved…” While kids and their creativity became dotting machines.
The ripple effect of Inspire to Inspire has been worth the social scrutiny such as the man who asked me how I intended to “fix it”. This project has accomplished its two main goals: connecting communities and connecting people to their own inspirations/passions. In the process, we have met amazing, loving people on this adventure.
It seemed the journey was coming to an end, yet how to celebrate so many inspirations, so many dialogues with strangers, so much unheard conversation of defying social rules? Thanks to my friend, Lisa, the answer became ArtPrize. ArtPrize is where I am heading next week to share the project with thousands (400,000 in 2012) of spectators who fly in from around the globe who vote on the winner of a $200,000 cash prize. The time has come to celebrate 2 years of creativity, collaboration, and inspirations with the world. My toes are uncontrollably tapping, I am frantically scratching out lists, and the soapy bucket is being prepared to make this rig shine!
P.S. You can still get in on the public art project and add your inspirations before ArtPrize begins…I challenge you 🙂