Retired art teacher and a former local TV personality Kimberly Daniel has switched gears again and entered the in-demand world of live-event painting.

The longtime Dickson resident who was the host of “In My Studio with Miss Kimberly” from 2000-2002, began live-event painting two years ago after a relative asked her to paint a family wedding.

Since then, she has painted for other weddings and special events, such as the annual McEwen Irish Picnic.

Daniel was the art teacher at Creek Wood High School from 2002-2019. After retiring, she became a full-time artist and embraced the challenges live-event painting offers.

“There’s a lot of mental preparation of planning what the scenes will be, but you have to fight the elements, just a lot of stuff you’re not prepared for. Interesting strokes make interesting paintings. I want energy and life and excitement, and I’m developing my technique as I’m doing it,” she said.

Live-event painting is considered a performance art. The artist starts and completes the painting during the event.

Daniel said she tries to get to the event site the day before the event. She talks to the client about any preferences he or she has for the painting such as an element from the event and which size canvas the client wants.

On the day of the event, Daniel will arrive several hours ahead of time to set up her paint, tools and easel, and begin a loose composition of the scene. After people start arriving at the location, she will develop more detail from the atmosphere of the event, the vibe she gets from the guests, clients, furniture and decorations.

“My style is very impressionistic, created with a loose hand and beautiful brushstrokes — an expression of the event more than a realistic rendering,” Daniel said.

The process for a wedding takes her about five or six hours to complete. A simple impressionist rendering of an event takes about two hours to complete. Her fee ranges from $600-$1,600, depending upon the painting requested, the size of the picture and how far she must travel to the event.

Daniel said live-event painting is a unique way to memorialize a special occasion, particularly a wedding.

“I’m trying to tell a story. Whatever I feel will really capture the wedding, I want to include,” she said. “It’s little bits of the whole scene put together. I’m doing something the photographer can’t do. To me, it’s (the couple’s) first family heirloom, and it’s their gift to each other. It’s something going to last. It’s more personable than a photograph.”

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