InsightsPOSTED October 10, 2018

#Weekending – Queen West Art Crawl

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Horse painting

Studies show that people who take part in extra-curricular activities are better problem-solvers and more creative. So, over the summer we’ll share what we like to do in our spare time.

Integrated Media Designer Vanessa Cuartas talks about her weekend exhibiting her art at the Queen West Art Crawl.

Something I have loved about Toronto since I moved here 3 years ago, is its passion for arts and culture within the community. This year I was fortunate enough to exhibit at the Queen West Art Crawl at Trinity Bellwoods. The Queen West Art Crawl is an outdoor art exhibition that showcases over 200 artists each year and I was so excited to be one of them. It was definitely a weekend filled with family, friends and art – what more can I ask for?!

Saturday was the big day and I was prepared, but as always, a little nervous. This was my first big exhibit, I had butterflies in my stomach and a million thoughts going through my head. As I finally set up my tent, I stopped, looked and thought to myself: “I’m really doing this, I’m putting my art out there”. I was ready.

Vanessa Art Show

As I’m sitting in my tent people are walking, some are stopping and looking at my artwork, I’m thinking this is a very intimidating experience but exciting at the same time. My favorite part of this whole experience was the reaction people would have when they would see my artwork: some would say “very colorful!”, some would ask if I really liked horses (if it was not obvious already), and others would just say “beautiful work!”. Hearing all these amazing comments really feeds into my passion for painting. But honestly, the best reactions and the ones I loved the most were from the kids. To hear them scream “horses!” from far away and drag their parents in just to see my work was so adorable. I was also able to interact with them and ask them what their favorite painting was, and I loved seeing their imaginations run wild as they were looking at my work.

It was Sunday morning, and it was the same feelings all over again, but this time something different happened. More people were coming to my booth to look at my art. Some were even taking my business card and it felt so good that people were appreciating my art. The afternoon came and I finally got my first sale in, a little girl who had been there for hours at the art crawl finally decided she wanted a piece of artwork. She chose one of my horse paintings! What an amazing feeling.

Business cards

It was almost 6:00 pm and I knew this great feeling and dream was coming to an end. I could not have done this without all the support from friends and family. I had such a great experience at the Queen West Art Crawl and I will definitely do it again. It taught me how to keep going and follow your dreams. It was one of the best weekends in my life.


Vanessa Cuartas is an Integrated Media Designer at ruckus digital. Check out more of our #Weekending series to see what we do on our weekends.

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