Since it was first conceived by artist Ezra Claytan Daniels (Upgrade Soul), the Art Battle has been a way for artists to blow off steam and have fun with their skills. The first Stumptown Comics Fest in 2004 was the site of the second-ever Art Battle, and it has been a mainstay ever since.
This year the creator himself was the host of the festivities, and Daniels kept the crowd pumped up while still keeping control of the on-stage chaos, as Portland faced off against non-Portland.
The hometown team consisted of Lucy Bellwood (Baggywrinkles), Mike Russell (Sabretooth Vampire), and perennial favorite Cat Farris (Flaccid Badger). For the Non-Portland players, Chicago’s Tyrell Cannon was joined by Parisian Nico Hitori De. In a surprising move, Jeff Parker revealed his true colors and claimed North Carolinian origins, turning his back on Portland like Sgt. Slaughter joining forces with General Adnan and Colonel Mustafa.
The games were high-spirited, with much trash-talking and hilarious drawings. Artist Patric Reynolds was kind enough to pose for a life drawing using a shake weight, the teams decided what the child of Optimus Prime and Sailor Moon would look like, and how one would auto-erotically asphyxiate oneself with a ball-peen hammer.
Alerted by the manager of the Jupiter Hotel that time was nearly up, Daniels called for a thirty-second Battle Royale: G.I. Joe vs. fairies, to decide the ultimate victor. After dinging Non-Portland for including Robocop in G.I. Joe, he threw the decision to the crowd, who overwhelmingly chose Portland’s team.
Congratulations to Team Portland, and to Cat Farris, who has been on the winning team for two years running!
NOTE: Most of the photographs from the Art Battle were not appropriate for public display. If you want to see all the glory, be sure to attend the next Art Battle!