This past weekend we took a family trip to Portsmouth. Beau was a back-up speaker for PHP Southcoast and I was excited to drop some art in the city where My Dog Sighs started the Free Art Friday phenomenon. I was also excited that we were going to be down there the same weekend that Korp's art show was opening.

Luke and I had a great time exploring down by the water and checking out Southsea Castle, but the contagious electricty of the art scene down there is what Beau and I couldn't stop talking about.

When we first got there, we stopped by Play Dead Studio to check out the area and maybe leave some art nearby. We caught Korp painting his wall and got to say hi in person for the first time!

On our way back to the hotel the boys helped me drop a few pieces of art - and some people sitting in a car nearby asked Beau what was up. "Oh! Is it that Southsea thing where people leave art around?" one woman asked. Evidently this isn't an underground thing around here. That evening we went to check out the conference venue and see if we'd run into anyone, and we left a few pieces in Old Porstmouth. The thing that I couldn't get over was that it seemed there were always #freeartfriday lovers out there actively looking for pieces! I'd get multiple responses to tweets and posts, saying that they went to the spot, but the art was gone - or that they had found it. I've had people contact me after claiming a piece, but never had people out looking specifically for them! They made it so fun and exciting that not only did I leave out the 6 pieces i planned to on Friday, I made a few on the go with Luke on Saturday, and we did a few more in the hotel to leave out on Saturday night.

So Saturday night we went to the art opening and it was a blast. We got to meet a bunch of people, we bought some art... and that excitement of opening night got to us again. Ever since we closed the doors on our gallery in Seattle, Halogen, Beau and I have had dreams of opening another gallery someday. Anytime we walk by an open storefront in say, Madison, Chicago, San Francisco, Miami, London, Sedgeberrow... we toy with the idea, discussing what changes we'd make, how we'd make it financially viable.... But, in the meantime, we try to find a local art community in which we can get involved. It's hard to beat the family we had in Seattle... with Bherd Studios, Twilight Artist Collective, Blue Bottle, Schmancy, City Hostel Seattle, Greenwood Collective, Flatcolor... and we move around so much it's always changing...

But in Minot we found 62 Doors...

in Madison we found Hatch Art House...

And now we've found Portsmouth!

Oh yeah. And another thing.

The kids! Down there! It was so cool to see so many young people excited about the show, about free art, about making their own art... And I have to say, I was more than a bit surprised and humbled that a bunch of them asked me to draw in their sketchbook. It reminded me of my days in Chicago - hanging out and drawing with Blutt, phoneticontrol, artillery, bonussaves, goons, the viking, melt, SOLVE....

So congrats to Korp on your amazing show!

Shout out to Play Dead Studio for providing an awesome space and supporting the southsea art scene.

My Dog Sighs next time i hope you stick around! :)

And thank you to all the Portsmouth art lovers who welcomed ninja so warmly, whose enthusiasm was exhilarating, and who are exposing their kids to the joy and beauty of street art!