Today’s posts from our featured Port Elizabeth Blogger:
Surf & art to uplift by Millerslocal.co.za – Millerslocal’s Blog:
Turns out that True Colours founder, Luc van der Walt, is a local surfer from Blue Water Bay – and in a weird coincidence I ended up having a surf with him at Millers the day after I saw the vid. Had no idea who he was as had never seen him out there before, but after we got chatting worked out he was the guy behind the video I’d just watched the day before.
Luc’s such an inspiring dude and is doing great stuff in the community that I wanted to catch up with him for a quick interview. Cos surfers doing good stuff is lekker.
What’s the focus of True Colours – what do you guys do?
We are an ART organisation that paints murals with disadvantaged kids in their communities. We provide them the self-esteem building opportunity to be a part of something big. The kids create a huge vibrant mural with an uplifting message for their own community.
There are surf outreach organisations all around the coastline of SA. They teach kids from disadvantaged backgrounds how to surf and form little families, surf tribes. The kids are encouraged to attend school and are given all kinds of other opportunities such as art workshops with us. 🙂
The aim for this project is to raise awareness and funds so more kids can benefit from the sweet life of surfing. The way it works: True Colours cruises around the country doing art workshops with these little surf tribes. The art that is created is then documented and digitally lifted to be adapted for surf board graphics.
The plan is to create a beautiful catalog so anyone buying a new board can choose from a range of these unique designs created by the little artists. The catalog will also feature stories of the kids and their organisations. The proceeds are to go back to their organisations so more laaities can benefit from the sweet life of surfing.
The Aleph crew, what an awesome bunch of kids. They are the third group that painted with us and represented the Eastern Cape. They painted two murals, one in their clubhouse and one in their community.
And what about the spontaneous bit of street art in the Tyhoksi community outside Jbay?
Ya, that was super fun. We drove around the neighbourhood looking for a wall that could use a bit of cheering up. We found the perfect one, a wall of a house facing an unhappy playground. The owner of the house was stoked at the idea and after telling one kid what was to go down, within 5 minutes we had 20 eager little faces gazing up at us.
Ya, the atmosphere was totally transformed. We were stoked, the kids were super stoked and the locals were so stoked that they asked us to come back and paint on their houses to.
Am guessing it isn’t hard to find willing artists? Must be super fun working with the groms
Kids are always stoked to paint and it’s a pleasure to work with such happy, eager and creative individuals. They are also super cute and say the most hilarious things, often myself and volunteers are crying with laughter.
After a degree in fine-art and a year or two in the Cape Town Art scene, I decided to travel the world. I painted murals in Backpackers and hostels to support my search for perfect waves. The murals were spotted by an organisation, apt-ART, that specialises in painting with kids affected by conflict. I hopped on board and traveled around painting murals with them for about three years before starting ‘True Colours – ART to uplift’ here in SA.
When we were chatting in the surf you’ve mentioned you’ve been involved in art projects all over
I have been to very interesting places. For example Congo. Here we partnered with the organisation War Child, painting murals with orphans in Goma and Kinshasa. We also painted with children displaced by the conflict in rebel territories. That was super rad and exciting.
Another interesting place was in the Zatary refugee camp in Jordan on the boarder of Syria. An amazing experience. I have just recently finished a project in Turkey. Working with the Karam foundation who is doing such amazing work for the refugee children living in one of the border towns.
The next phase of the surf project is to get the more eager and talented kids to work their magic directly onto the boards. The phase after that is to launch the catalog I mentioned with exhibitions showcasing the best works, stories and arty pics of the project. Planing to exhibit in Cape Town, J-Bay and Durbs.
If the project is a success we are planing to work with a lot more groups in SA and even move up into Africa, maybe even go to South America, India and Indo.
We are always doing other community projects on the side and developing new ideas. One idea is have a big group of interns come in and learn from us, then split up into teams with the aim to paint with kids in all the orphanages in SA.
If peeps are keen to get involved with your projects what can they do and how can they go about it?
Well, True Colours is brand new and is always looking to add to its team of super stoked and skilled individuals. If what we do inspires you, we’d love to have you onboard. Email me anytime. We are all volunteering our time and skills for free and sometimes out of pocket. Any financial or material donations will be ultra-appreciated. We believe that ART should be fun and free for everyone.
So if you keen to help out with your time, or are able to donate materials, please give Luc a holler on: email@example.com
Shot to local surfer Andre Venter from Decor Pro for already getting involved and donating paint, and to Lippie for offering free use of his Surf Centre boards when Luc wants to do some lessons with the lighties.
Images by Kayoko Shutoh & Luc van der Walt
Read more here: Millerslocal.co.za – Millerslocal’s Blog
The week that was…. by Millerslocal.co.za – Millerslocal’s Blog:
Hopefully every banked a few sessions, cos looking at the charts there isn’t a hang of a lot coming the way of the bay for a while now, just whatever the east can whip up, or take some trips round the corner.
Did mention to the Dutchmann that he might end up with 2 shortboards pretty pronto if he drove around like that, or at least a kiff pressure ding on the deck – but he tuned all good at 40km/h but things got sketchy at 120!
Both the car (911T) and the board (retro twinnie) are beauts. Might just need some roofracks though….
(but hey, if you rocking a GP number plate you can get away with stuff like that!)
So he ambles back to Millers and stands about on the beach for about 20 min acting like nothings up, throwing stones into the sea etc. Finally a decent lil set came through, after which everyone was paddling back out with no eye’s on the beach. Dude saw his gap and grabbed the bag and ran back over the dune. Did a quick check of the contents, skyfed the phone and bucks, and ran back to his tree – did another quick change job back into his original clothes, and then calmly walked off. All he needed was a phone box and he coulda been Superman….
The cops had actually just been doing a drive-through at Millers and had seen him grab the bag whilst they were on the deck at the car park. But when they walked down the boardwalk towards Hobie to investigate he’d already done his clothes change so he walked past them un-noticed.
Ran downstairs n over the road to tell him they’d just walked right past the ou, so luckily they managed to pick him up as he was walking back towards Pipe. Stuck him in the van and off to chookie hopefully. Grom got his stuff back, so was stoked.
Hopefully everyone will now know what this dodgy dude looks like and can chase him away if you see him hanging about. He can buzz off from our beachfront and go be a scumbag somewhere else.
Best bet is to not leave anything on the beach these days. Unless you don’t mind it going AWOL.
Read more here: Millerslocal.co.za – Millerslocal’s Blog
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