Live Art

Camden, Maine

During outdoor art shows Buckley Smith draws while onlookers watch. These finished “Live Drawing” pieces are sold off the easel.  Buyers bid on a silent auction sheet. Winning bidder takes the drawing home.

Each year on Labor Day Weekend we have an art booth at Windjammer Festival, harbor side, Camden, Maine.

Here are some drawings done at our tent display area.

Windjammer Festival Talent Show, Camden, Maine

At 7pm on the Friday night of Labor Day Weekend in Camden, Maine, for the talent show at the head of the harbor lawn, Buckley Smith draws a 4ft x 8ft charcoal drawing on blue paper.

The audience watches & then bids on the finished piece at 8:30 pm. Winning bidders take it home.

Windjammer Talent Show live drawing 2016

Windjammer Talent Show live drawing 2015

Sailing to the Moon. 4ft x 8ft. Chalk & charcoal on blue paper. Auction price $800.
Buck adds details to Sailing to the Moon. 4ft x 8ft. Chalk & charcoal on blue paper. Live drawing in 2 hours.


Build a Boat, Camden, Maine

Part of Windjammer Weekend on Labor Day each year in Camden,Maine involves a Build-a-Boat contest in which a competitor is given materials, has 5 hours to build a boat that can float & carry 2 crew. Then there is a race of all the boats.

This little boat that Buckley Smith built was a wonderful artistic display item but did not float.

Large Performance Art Mural~Language of Peace,Sta. Barbara, Ca

When Buckley Smith does a performance mural, either as a backdrop for a play or musical performance, or for a public event, it usually involves a week of preparation and a four figure budget.

His free-standing mural, Moonsailors’ Language of Peace Mural, was done in celebration of the Santa Barbara Sea Center Opening the 17 through the 23 April 2005.

If you would like a live mural performance for your celebration or your event, contact Buckley Smith for price and details.

These photos are of the mural preparation for the Santa Barbara Sea Center opening the 17 and 23 April 2005.

First a day is spent making lists of what is needed and purchasing materials: paints, rollers, sponges, painter dropcloths, etc. On another day, we find a local sailmaker to sew the dropcloths together.

We spread the canvas on a lawn and hose it down. On the wet canvas, Buck rolls on color while I follow behind on hands and knees with a sponge to scrub the color into the canvas. After a day of drying, the background color for the composition is ready.

We fold up the canvas, load paints, rollers, spray bottles for water, staple gun,screws, lumber (if the frame is free standing), cordless tools, etc and drive to the event venue. In this case, Stearns Wharf in Santa Barbara.

The day before the event, Buck and a carpenter friend, Mike Cook, construct and set up the free-standing frame on the pier next to the Ty Warner Sea Center.

On the morning of the opening we are on the pier by 7:30am. The event starts at 10am. Buck and Mike stretch the canvas onto the frame lying on the ground and then raise it to a vertical position and screw and bolt it into place, being sure it is secure against any wind that might come up during the day.

At 10am, Buck starts to rough out the sketch of the mural with charcoal on the canvas. People gather to watch him paint all day, feeling the magic of the mural.


“From far away it looks deeper than from close up,” says one lady in a straw hat. “From close up the figures and sea creatures come alive and play.”

Children sit on a seal statue, rapt. Some parents ask questions. This Moonsailor dream sail, this large piece of art had become a community activity, with a live artist painting the scene as they watch.

By noon the painting is well underway. The picture begins to emerge.

By 6pm, most of the mural is finished on the 10×30 foot canvas. The details are saved for the 23rd when the public would have a second chance to see Buck work.

After the public vanishes for the evening, we spend two hours to dismantle the frame and pack up the canvas and materials.

From start to finish, this project takes a week: puchasing materials, lining up helpers, drawing sketches and having them approved, transporting everything to the work site, finding a place to stay overnight to be ready early in the morning to perform.

The life of a performance muralist is only for an artist with plenty of energy and spirit.  Buckley Smith loves to produce these large works of art which involve the wonder of the spectators.