Hand-painted Billboard Art Made from Tweets on Creativity

Here’s a billboard-sized example of a project that blends hand-painted art with digital communication technologies.

Clear Channel Outdoor, one of the world’s largest outdoor advertising companies, celebrated its sponsorship of the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity in June by completing the world’s first hand-painted micrography billboard made entirely of tweets.  Micrography is a technique is which text is used to form an image that is most visible when seen from a distance.

 The hand-painted billboard is composed of hundreds of tweets answering questions such as:

  • Who owns the creative agenda?
  • Can creativity be a bigger force for social good? 
  • Is creativity an art or science?
  • Is technology redefining creativity?

The tweets were generated by the company’s #canvas for creativity social media debate. It was the third most used hashtag at this year’s Cannes Lions festival.


Billboard muralists Tait Roelofs and Patrick McGregor painstakingly hand-painted the best comments, perspectives, observations and quotes from the conversation onto the 16 x 4 m canvas,

Set in the grounds of Le Grand Hotel in Cannes, the mural featured the 60th Anniversary Cannes logo, celebrating the creative potential of the global advertising industry, and Cannes’ 60 years of recognizing and inspiring exceptional creativity.

To continue the discussion online, the mural was converted into the world’s first gigapixel image searchable by tweet. Contributors can search for their tweet by keyword or Twitter handle, to see in high-resolution detail exactly where in the mural it appears.

“Cannes Lions is an important global celebration of the brands and businesses that push the boundaries of creativity,” said Paul Evans director, marketing and planning, Clear Channel International. “Our hand-painted Twitter mural symbolize the powerful audience effect that can result when physical and digital experiences collide in meaningful ways.”

Social media visualizations of the #canvas Twitter content were streamed on CCO’s website, digital screens at the festival, and a high-resolution projection onto a separate 18 x 5 meter canvas located on the roof of the Le Grand Hotel, Cannes. The projection canvas was built specifically for the festival and sat at the highest spot on the Croisette – a spot never before used for advertising or media at Cannes Lions. This content played for a total of 18 hours every day to over 11,000 delegates from 92 countries.

Clear Channel Outdoor’s international in-house marketing team created the program concept, working with a roster of agency partners, including Buzz Radar (data visualization), CURB Media (outdoor mural, high-resolution projection), Visualise (gigapixel image, 3600 images), Fishburn Hedges (PR), Proud Creative (design) and We Are Social (social media management).

Artists Patrick McGregor and Tait Roelofs, as part of CURB’s team. Patrick McGregor is an artist trained in hand-painted billboard ads and fine arts. Over the past two decades, he has delivered extraordinary outdoor ads for companies ranging from Nike to Marc Jacobs as well as galleries.Tait Roelofs (aka T8) is a Los Angeles based artist working in various media, mainly painting, sculpture, and video. T8 has exhibited in numerous art fairs including Art LA, Scope NY, Pulse Miami, and at the ISLIP Art Museum in Long Island. He has had numerous solo and group shows in Los Angeles and New York. He is currently represented by De Soto Gallery in Los Angeles.


Clear Channel Outdoor at Cannes

Gigapixel Image of Tweets on the Billboard

Austin Art Boards Contest Winners Will Beautify Area Roadways

Reagan Outdoor Advertising in Austin is coloring the skyline with artwork discovered through the company’s annual Austin Art Boards competition. The second annual visual arts contest drew a strong response from Austin’s creative community. The 220 entries received this year was more than double the number submitted last year.

Works from the ten Austin Art Boards winners will beautify area roadways for the next one to two years on billboards donated by Reagan.

To enter, each artist submitted a work that was 6 x 24-inches wide, and mounted with a 2-inch border. The final prints to be installed on the billboard will be 14 x 48 feet wide, with the art occupying an area of 12 x 48 feet. Entrants were encouraged to be creative and keep in mind that they were creating art, and not advertising.

The entries were judged by Wally Workman of Wally Workman Gallery, Jade Walker of the University of Texas Visual Arts Center, and Bill Keese, former president of the Austin Visual Arts Center.

“It’s a privilege to be able to contribute to our city’s unique creative culture by celebrating the work of local artists on our billboards,” said Billy Reagan, president of Reagan Outdoor Advertising. “This year’s competition attracted work from our city’s incredibly diverse and talented field of artists.” Winners in the 2012 Austin Art Boards competition include:

  • David Bjurstrom — “Labyrinth”
  • Douglas Pollard — “Heat Wave”
  • Emily Cayton — “Canyon”
  • Jules Buck Jones — “Vestigial Vulture”
  • Logan Ganshirt — “Shape Relations”
  • Marilyn Flanegan — “Get the Ball”
  • Rachel Noffke — “Considering the Birds”
  • Reagan Hackleman — “Icon”
  • Robert Bolland — “Red Sun”
  • Taylor Winn — “On the Lake”

An Austin Art Boards exhibit featuring all winning entries and honorable mentions will be open for public viewing at the Bass Concert Hall (floors L4 and L5) from August 22 through October 8. Reagan Outdoor Advertising also plans to host a reception in mid-September to further celebrate the 2012 winners.

Video interviews with the winning artists have been posted in the gallery on the Austin Art Boards website.


Austin Art Boards

About Reagan Outdoor Advertising

See Your Art Displayed on Times Square Billboards

If you would like to have your work seen in bright lights by hundreds of thousands of people who visit Times Square, submit your entry to the “Art Takes Times Square” competition.  The event is being conducted by Artists Wanted, Chasama, and the Times Square Alliance.

One artist will be selected to receive $10,000 cash, inclusion in a limited edition, printed “Art Takes Times Square” book, and the exhibition of a lifetime— his or her art displayed on the most iconic billboards of Times Square. The organizers of the competition will also be producing an online feature that will be sent out to hundreds of thousands of art enthusiasts around the globe.

Any creative person in the world can enter as long as you are 18 years or older.  Simply take a few minutes to upload photos of your creative work and create a free competition profile. You can submit a portfolio of up to 20 images.  (Standard entry deadline is April 30; final entry deadline is May 25.) The winners will be notified in June.

Curated by Art Enthusiasts around the World

The “Art Takes Times Square” exhibition will be curated by art lovers around the world. Visitors to the Artists Wanted website can sign up to “collect” their favorite artists and help decide who will be displayed on the massive billboards of Times Square this summer.

So if you decide to enter the competition, plan to share your portfolio with friends, family and colleagues. Use email, Facebook, Twitter and other social networking tools to encourage your fan club to collect your works. The most collected artists will have their submissions reviewed by chashama and Artists Wanted to determine the Grand Prize winner to be featured in Times Square and awarded $10,000 in cash.

Artists Wanted will also be selecting artists to feature to tens of thousands of followers on their social networking channels and e-mail list. Visit the Artists Wanted website for details on entry procedures and answers to frequently asked questions.


Art Takes Time Square Competition

About Artists Wanted

Artists Wanted is a collaborative project dedicated to building lasting opportunities for emerging talent. Created by several New York City artists and creative organizations, Artists Wanted is dedicated to making the process of breaking into the professional art world more welcoming, dynamic, and open-ended.

Mission Statement: Artists Wanted

About Chashama

Chashama supports creativity in New York City by repurposing vacant properties. Each property is recycled as a work or show space for artists, and made available at no charge, or at highly subsidized rates. These efforts invigorate the surrounding communities with an influx of innovative programs, culture, creativity, and commerce.

Mission Statement: Chasama

About The Times Square Alliance

The Times Square Alliance develops techniques and relationships to bring temporary high-quality, cutting-edge art and performance to Times Square’s public spaces, so that it is known globally as a place where ordinary people encounter authentic, ever-changing urban art in multiple forms and media

Mission Statement: Times Square Alliance


Marketing Firm Devotes Office Windows to Outdoor Video Art

Launch Farm, a marketing and public-relations firm in Columbus, Ohio, is using some of the windows into their offices to showcase video art by young artists.

The first installation, entitled “Le Voyeur,” was created by Istanbul-born artist Ilke Akcasoy in partnership with Launch Farm.The video stylistically details acts of voyeurism and privacy intrusions as it plays outdoors, after dark on Launch Farm’s iconic windows on their loft-like studio at 772 North High Street. The installation will run through mid April.

On any given day, hundreds of shoppers, diners, cyclists and motorists whiz by the site, with necks craned to see what’s going on in the studio upstairs. Le Voyeur flips the script, as the window looking in becomes the window looking out. Now – who is watching whom?

Akcasoy was inspired by the interplay of spectacle and spectator: “I thought it would be interesting to explore the notion of stalking while also pointing out how normalized it has become in our society today.” The stalking element of Le Voyeur surprises many viewers, as giant, high-definition eyeballs appear to follow them as they walk down the street.

Launch Farm recognizes the community value of local art and plans to promote additional public installations throughout the year.

“The more young filmmakers and product designers I meet, the more I want to harness and expose their talents to the world,” said Christian Deuber, Principal at Launch Farm. “With digital video just a smartphone click away, I hope that our actions will inspire others to transform their lifeless, dark windows at night into some sort of artistic expression beyond sales promotions.”


About Launch Farm

Billboard Art Project Offers Visual Relief from Ad Messages

ARTISTS. Would you like to see your work displayed on a roadside billboard? If so, watch for the 2012 schedule of the Billboard Art Project. The project is run by a nonprofit organization that acquires digital billboards normally used for advertising and repurposes them as roadside galleries.

The types of work displayed include images created specifically for the billboard as well as images that have been adapted to the format. Each show is open to all individuals and groups who are interested in participating.

The first Billboard Art Project debuted in Richmond, Virginia in October 2010. Since then, shows have been scheduled in Duluth, Chicago, Reading, New Orleans, Baton Rouge and San Bernardino. No two Billboard Art Project shows are alike. Each city features new work.

The show’s founder, David Morrison, was inspired to create The Billboard Art Project after seeing some test images on a newly erected LED digital billboard while he was driving to work. He said the images were like the desktop wallpaper pictures that come preloaded on your personal computer, but “they carried a striking resonance when displayed on a billboard.”

He found it refreshing to see something other than advertising posted on the billboard. Now that advertising messages are everywhere we look, he says “When you see a billboard that isn’t telling you what to buy or who to trust, it carries the impact of the unexpected.”

Visit The Billboard Art Project website for more information about applying for the show. To see work that has been displayed and announcements of upcoming shows, visit the Facebook page for The Billboard Art Project.


Website: The Billboard Art Project

Facebook Page: The Billboard Art Project