What's Happening at Big Picture 2019?

Two blocks of fascination are coming soon to the Peoria Warehouse District. As Big Picture Peoria’s Festival heads into our second year, we’ve got the return of favorites from last year—a paint-by-number community mural, a paint fling with a twist, energy-filled performances, and breakdancing—plus MORE community art. 

Make Art: You can get involved by learning how to breakdance, joining in the 100-drum drumming circle, pinching clay to make a little person, painting on the the take-home-a-piece graffiti wall, signing up for the costume contest, and even singing away in the open-mic contest. 

Watch Art: See the Big Picture Awards in the making when Black Dog Metal Arts heats up iron for a big iron pour. Then walk over and check out hot pottery as Chris Kukla and his team have a slip raku firing. Even if the weather is cool, we’ll be warm with these two art groups joining the team.

Performances: Creative Director Bryan Blanks is returning for his second year and will fill the performance stage with vibrant talent from around Central Illinois. And Bryan says, ”Last year's Big Picture Festival was one of the most special events I've seen in Peoria in many years. The event truly made me so proud to be a Peorian. Big Picture was a perfect example of how art is alive and thriving in Peoria. The Festival gives artists from all walks of life to not only the opportunity to collaborate, but to witness first-hand the great work others are creating. I left last year's Big Picture Festival uniquely inspired on a creative level, and challenged to spread my wings as a local artist.”

Murals? We’ve Got Them. This year local artist Andre Petty will be painting a portrait of Peoria’s favorite son—Richard Pryor. And yes, there will be another paint-by-number mural we can all help create.

Professionals. Artists can sign up to compete in the chalk art competition and have the chance of winning $1000 in cash prizes.  Sign up coming soon! 

Better Together: One of the key guiding principles for Big Picture is collaboration. We create a stronger, vibrant community when we all pitch in. This year, we will have a Giving Hands Donation Station where we will accept donations to area nonprofits. Bring an item or donate some cash and you’ll be entered in a raffle to win art created by our participating artists.

Giving Hands Sculpture: Watch your donations of canned goods for the Peoria Food Bank come to life when artist Heather Ford creates a sculpture from your gifts.

New Expanded Kid Zone: Hands on, interactive, and full of fun.

Contests: We’ve added a costume contest hosted by Greg Batton and an open-mic contest by Roxy Baker of WWCT 99.9 FM and Kindall Nelson of Peoria Music Live. Stayed tuned for more information and the sign up forms.

Got an Idea? If you want to be part of the Big Picture Peoria 2019 Festival, you still have time. Our next team meeting is August 22 at CT Gabbert's, 1323 SW Adams, Peoria. Start time is 5:15. Come see what we're all about. If you can't make the meeting and would like to be involved as a participating artist or a volunteer, please email us at bigpicturepeoria@gmail.com



Draw for a Cause Chalk Painting

Chalk Art.  We are half way to getting all the needed sponsors for the 2019 Draw for a Cause Chalk Art Competition. Sign up for artists is coming soon.  We love to have your business featured as one of our sponsors. Here’s how to get involved: Donate $100 to Big Picture Initiative, a 501(c)(3), to sponsor an 8’x8’ square for a chalk artist at our second annual Draw for a Cause. You can send a check to Big Picture Initiative, 9115 N Picture Ridge Rd, Peoria 61615 or use the Donate button above. 

The proceeds from donations will be used to give kids a unique experience of learning from professional artists in after school and summer school art programs. See what we did this summer thanks to our 2018 sponsors. 

Money raised from the 2018 Draw for a Cause funded summer mural programs at four Peoria Public Schools, a community art project with the Peoria Park District, and a month-long filmmaking class at the Romain Art and Culture Center.

As a sponsor, you will get your business name and logo on a chalk square plus the Draw for a Cause signs posted at the festival. We’ll put your name on the BigPicturePeoria.org website plus showcase your name on promotional images at the Big Picture Peoria Film Festival.

Film Festival

The Big Picture Film Festival is expanding to two days in 2019 and now includes international/ national filmmakers as well as Central Illinois filmmakers. 

“We’ll show all the films on a continuous loop at five different locations at businesses in the West Main area between 5 and 9 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 11. We’ve been talking with businesses in the Main-Sheridan area such as the Broken Tree, Studios on Sheridan and the Lit on Fire book shop,” said Allison Walsh, program director.

“The idea is that people can move around that night and catch the films at different places if they wish. We’re hoping restaurants and stores in the area will stay open during that time,” she said.

On Saturday, Oct. 12, the film festival moves to the Peoria Riverfront Museum for an evening’s awards ceremony that follows the Big Picture Street Festival planned from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. in a two-block area of the Warehouse District.

“With the award presentations, we’ll just be playing the best films in each category at the museum,” said Walsh.

That evening will also feature a special presentation to Connor Parkhurst, the local filmmaker who, earlier this summer, received a $3,000 grant  to complete his film, now being edited, she said.

Big Picture will also soon award a $1,000 grant to a prospective Bradley film student this semester said Walsh. Big Picture secured the grant through State Sen. Chuck Weaver’s office.

Learn more here.