DIXON – Douglas Kitto went in a different direction Saturday.
He was among 25 artists at Art 4 Art’s Sake at Sauk Valley Community College. They were donating their time creating artwork for an auction to support The Next Picture Show, a nonprofit Dixon gallery and fine arts center.
While many of the artists painted local buildings such as Books on First or Stables bar, Kitto was working on a picture of a woman. It wasn’t of anyone in particular, he said.
Kitto, a Chile native who moved to Dixon 4 months ago, was only partway through the painting about 3 p.m. A white circle was in the center of the woman’s body.
“She’s holding the spirit,” the 62-year-old said. “It’s going from her to us.”
He had until 7:30 p.m., the start of the auction, to finish the painting. He had yet to work on the section where the woman’s long, flowing hair would go.
“The hair is the last thing I do. It goes over everything else,” he said.
Event organizer Bonnie Kime said participants were welcome to do the artwork they wanted, but organizers encouraged them to do scenes from the area, which typically draw higher bids.
Linda Hinkelmann, a Byron resident who started weaving in 1989, was one of the few doing something other than a painting. She was working on a basket.
Her husband, Ron, got into the act as well. He created a basket that was an inch wide.
He said he was there to support his wife – “It’s her hobby” – but he held out the possibility of entering the mini-basket in the auction.
Most artists began working around noon. Later, the event featured a cash bar, a silent auction and music. Then came the live auction.
The Next Picture Show has been holding the fundraiser for the last 5 years.