© 2019 By Annika Wooton

Annika Wooton, Annika, Speed painter, miss kansas, miss wooded hills
Annika Wooton, Annika, Speed painter, miss kansas, miss wooded hills
Annika Wooton, Annika, Speed painter, miss kansas, miss wooded hills
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So what is this "speed painting" thing?
Annika Wooton, Annika, Speed painter, miss kansas, miss wooded hills
Annika Wooton, Annika, Speed painter, miss kansas, miss wooded hills
Annika Wooton, Annika, Speed painter, miss kansas, miss wooded hills

"Speed Painting" is a style of performance art where the painter is presenting a live painting performance in a varied amount of time. Sometimes we do it upside-down or have another kind of trick or gimmick up our sleeve to spice things up, but essentially it's just painting really fast in front of an audience!

I was first asked to do a live painting for a high school jazz band performance - it's the first video block up there. I drew inspiration from some artists' work I had admired and presented a pretty straight forward live painting while the musicians played. 

Fast forward a couple years to the second year I compete at Miss Kansas... I had always wanted a way to present my visual art talents onstage. I boldly told my local director that I wanted to do speed painting for my talent at the state pageant. Having previously only done one set of live paintings back in high school - each painting taking about 7 or 8 minutes - I was taking a big leap to chop that time down to 90 seconds for the talent requirements and make it an exciting performance. 

My brother and my dad built my first spinning easel in Virginia and shipped it to me in pieces just a week before the competition. I did a portrait of the reigning Miss Kansas, Theresa Vail, to the song, "Brave," by Sara Bareilles that I had recorded (That's the second video up there). 

Since then, I have traveled across the country to New Mexico, Missouri, Virginia, Florida, and of course across the great state of Kansas creating over 50 unique live paintings for school appearances, fundraisers, talent shows, and competitions. I have worked with a phenomenal creative team to build three easels to present my performances in new ways. I have been recognized by mic.com and New York Magazine as one of three pioneering female speed painters in America and I have mentored young speed painters across our country to pursue this budding style of performance art. 

Though my speed painting style is vastly different from my more meditated illustration and graphic design work, it is a passion that I have enjoyed cultivating over the past six years and I look forward to bringing more unique pieces of art into the world.

2016 Miss Kansas Talent